ATHENS — An informal web meeting of the members of the Foreign Affairs and Defence Committees of the parliaments of the southern EU countries, chaired by the chairman of the Parliamentary Committee on National Defence and Foreign Affairs Konstantinos Gkioulekas, took place on Wednesday, September 8, 2021. The keynote speakers of the meeting were Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias and the Vice President of the European Commission, Margaritis Schinas.
According to a Parliament announcement, participants stressed the need to strengthen the cooperation between the region's parliaments, in order to plan an effective strategy for dealing with the great common challenges and problems in the Mediterranean region.
In particular, Dendias stated that the specific area is characterised by very fragile conditions, as both forces for prosperity and destabilising forces are active within it. The common goal of the countries of the South, but also of all the member states of the European Union, should be practical solidarity with each other, support for political processes in conflict zones such as Libya and Afghanistan, and the isolation of practices not compatible with the 21st century, as well as a holistic approach to the Mediterranean, he said.
The Vice President of the European Commission for the Promotion of Our European way of Life, Margaritis Schinas, noted that the participation of the deputies of national parliaments is necessary in the negotiation of the new EU Pact on Migration and Asylum. He appeared very optimistic about the course of the negotiations, saying that political conditions in the European Union for reaching a balanced agreement have never been more favourable.