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The President of the Government takes part in the Summit of Southern EU Countries (MED7)

Pedro Sánchez stresses importance of coordination by Mediterranean countries to push through policies of mutual interest in EU

Thursday 10 September 2020

MED7 gathers together seven European Union countries whose geographic specificity allows them to contribute added value to the European process: Spain, France, Italy, Portugal, Cyprus, Malta and Greece. It was set up in 2014 as an informal forum to forge closer positions by Mediterranean countries in negotiations with the EU. This is the seventh meeting of the group. The President of the Government highlighted "the importance of the geographic neighbourhood" in addressing the "conflicts and tensions in the region, and the systematic and governance crisis that endangers the security and stability of Europe".

He also spoke about the new Migration and Asylum Pact that the European Commission will present shortly. "We hope that this is a balanced and effective reform based on the principles of solidarity and humanity, as well as on a fair distribution of responsibility", declared Pedro Sánchez. In this regard, the President of the Government sought to pass on his "solidarity with Greece", following the fire at Moria refugee camp on the Greek island of Lesbos.

The European leaders addressed the recent events in the Eastern Mediterranean. Pedro Sánchez conveyed the support and solidarity of the Government of Spain to his Greek and Cypriot counterparts "following the violations of their maritime waters and sovereign rights".

The President of the Government called for "moderation" in ensuring its "de-escalation" and urged respect for international law, particularly the international law of the sea, and encouraged all parties to resolve their differences through dialogue and negotiation. Pedro Sánchez stressed "the commitment to true dialogue and support for mediation by the High Representative of the EU, the President of the European Council and Germany "to ensure the resumption of dialogue between Greece and Turkey on the question of the maritime zone".

Pool Moncloa/Borja Puig de la BellacasaAnother of the issues addressed at the meeting was the situation in Libya and support for the ceasefire declared on 21 August. In this regard, Pedro Sánchez remarked on its "special importance" because this is an agreement between parties in Libya and offers the best chance of making progress on the political negotiations pushed through by the United Nations.

The President of the Government stressed the need to quickly ratify the necessary instruments to allow the Multiannual Financial Framework to be implemented by 1 January 2021 in order to tackle the consequences of the pandemic. "After a difficult yet historic agreement in July, the gravity of the situation means that time is a luxury that we can no longer afford", underlined Pedro Sánchez.

Non official translation