PRESS RELEASE BY THE MINISTRY FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS: “In the course of its EU Presidency, Malta is reinforcing its historic vocation as a catalyst of an innovative vision on the Mediterranean” – Minister George W. Vella

Minister for Foreign Affairs George W. Vella opened the 53rd Anna Lindh Foundation (ALF) Board of Governors Meeting, held at the Corinthia Palace in Attard. The meeting was held in Malta after the highly successful ALF MED Forum that was held in Malta in October 2016.

Addressing those present, Minister Vella said that Malta actively supports the enrichment of synergies between initiatives, such as the Union for the Mediterranean, the Anna Lindh Foundation, the Western Mediterranean Dialogue (5+5 Med), and the League of Arab States. Their distinct mandates are a complimentary component of laying the foundations of a promising future for the Euro-Mediterranean region. Minister Vella emphasised that it is only through enhanced dialogue between the key actors that the Mediterranean narrative can be changed.

Minister Vella said that the essential role of the ALF must be duly recognised as a unique resource, based on a true North/South partnership, championing intercultural dialogue across its diverse network of regional actors and partners.

The excellent relationship between Malta and the Anna Lindh Foundation is living proof that this renewed partnership delivers. “We look forward to continuing this partnership based on understanding and shared ideals”, continued Minister Vella.

The Minister pointed out that this ties in very well with one of the main priorities of the ongoing Malta EU Presidency – the “Mediterranean”, together with two other priorities, Migration and Maritime. The “EU Neighbourhood Mid-Term Review” is also a key feature of our Presidency, which will provide a policy focus on intercultural dialogue, being an institutional milestone for regional actors.

In the course of its EU Presidency, Malta is reinforcing its historic vocation as a catalyst of an innovative vision for the Mediterranean. Minister Vella said that Malta stands ready to take concrete action in promoting mutual understanding, together with the Anna Lindh Foundation.

ALF President Madame Elisabeth Guigou, and ALF Executive Director Ambassador Hatem Atallah also addressed the meeting.

Source: Government of Malta