angle-left Foreign Minister Soini to Foreign Affairs Council in Brussels

Foreign Minister Soini to Foreign Affairs Council in Brussels

The EU Foreign Affairs Council (FAC) will meet in Brussels on 19 November. Finland's representative at the meeting will be Minister for Foreign Affairs Timo Soini. The topics on the meeting agenda will be Ukraine, Central Asia, and Bosnia and Herzegovina. At lunch, foreign ministers will discuss the situation in Yemen. The meeting will close with a joint session of foreign and defence ministers, whose topic of discussion will be security and defence.

As regards Ukraine, the discussion will focus on the conflict in eastern Ukraine and the so-called elections in the breakaway republics, which contravene the Minsk peace agreements. Finland reaffirms its full support for Ukraine's territorial integrity. Foreign ministers will also discuss the Azov Sea and Ukraine's reforms. In their discussions relating to Central Asia, foreign ministers will review developments in the region and the opportunities that it offers. The aim is to make preparations for the upcoming EU-Central Asia ministerial meeting. Foreign ministers will also handle the political situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina and its relations with the European Union following the elections held in October 2018.

At lunch, the discussions will focus on the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Yemen. Finland will express its strong support for Special Envoy of the Secretary General for Yemen Martin Griffiths' efforts to launch political negotiations in order to improve the situation. At their joint session, foreign and defence ministers will review the progress made in security and defence cooperation. The European Union takes major steps forward when ministers adopt commitments aiming at improving crisis management capabilities, rapid reaction and cooperation between EU actors.

In connection with the FAC meeting, Minister Timo Soini and Germany's Foreign Minister Heiko Maas will hold bilateral discussions on the EU's internal cooperation related to the return of Iraqi asylum seekers

Inquiries: Riikka Taivassalo, Special Adviser to the Foreign Minister, tel. +358 46 923 4581, and Matti Nissinen, European Correspondent, tel. +358 295 351 780

The Foreign Ministry’s email addresses are in the format [email protected].