PES Meeting on Eastern Partnership
Ahead of the Eastern Partnership Summit in Riga, social democratic leaders met to discuss the agenda of the summit, talking about the precarious situation in the region and the relations between the EaP countries and the EU.
The Summit aims to confirm the EU’s commitment to pursue closer and differentiated relations with EaP member countries, something which PES Leaders have long been working for.
"The last Eastern Partnership Summit kicked off a series of events that no one could have predicted", said Sergei Stanishev, PES President. "The world today is very different from that of a year and a half ago. The conflict in Eastern Ukraine has so far taken the lives of more than 6000 people. We urge all sides to reach a long-term sustainable resolution to the conflict and its causes through dialogue, avoidingconfrontation and violence. We sincerely hope all parties remain committed to the Minsk Agreement so that Ukraine can implement much needed reforms."
Many EaP countries face a challenging economic and political climate. Yet they are determined to continue with reforms and develop democratic states based on rule of law and respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms. Ukraine, Georgia and the Republic of Moldova closed Association Agreements with the EU last year, and the Republic of Moldova has implemented a visa-free agreement. PES Leaders today, confirmed their commitment to all of the six EaP countries.
Mr. Stanishev added: "In order to keep stability, we need robust democracies with well-functioning economies in our region. Only through reforms and dialogue will we be able to establish a safe and prosperous neighbourhood."
During the Summit, the leaders will discuss state building, rule of law and institutional strengthening, developing market opportunities with a specific focus on the digital economy field, ensuring energy security and improving the interconnections, enhancing mobility and contacts between people. Conflict resolution in the region will also be high on the agenda of the summit.
Free to use photos of the meeting at the PES set on Flickr.