PRESS RELEASE ISSUED BY THE MINISTRY FOR HOME AFFAIRS AND NATIONAL SECURITY: Federica Mogherini to attend Valletta Summit follow-up in Malta in February

Federica Mogherini, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign and Security Policy, has confirmed that she will attend the Senior Officials’ Meeting that will be held in Malta on the 8th and the 9th of February 2017 to follow up on last November’s Valletta Summit on Migration.

At a bilateral meeting with Minister for Home Affairs and National Security, Carmelo Abela, at Fort St Elmo in Valletta on Wednesday 2nd November 2016, Ms Mogherini said the follow-up meeting is important to assess what has been achieved since the Summit and what remains to be done by both the EU’s Member States and their African partner countries. Minister Abela said the High Representative’s participation will send a strong message of EU commitment and unity, adding that preparations for the meeting are well underway.

The themes discussed during the meeting included the EU’s approach to migration, security and defence, as well as Malta’s role in missions and operations of the EU’s Common Security and Defence Policy.

Welcoming the first Progress Report on the Partnership Framework with Third Countries under the European Agenda on Migration, issued recently, Minister Abela said there have already been some encouraging results from the heightened engagement with the five priority African countries as well as with other relevant third countries over the past few months. “We believe it is vital to maintain this momentum and use the weeks ahead to achieve more concrete and tangible results in time for the EU Heads of State or Government’s next European Council meeting in December,” he remarked.

On Libya, the Minister said that Malta welcomes the ackowledgement, in that Progress Report, of the pivotal role of Libya in the migratory flows along the central Mediterranean route. Expressing Malta’s belief that the EU should increase its engagement in Libya, he reiterated the island’s commitment to support further EU efforts to train the Libyan Coastguard, as part of its anti-migrant smuggling Operation Sophia.

On EU-NATO cooperation, he said that while Malta recognises the significance of these relations in the light of threats that call for synergies arising from shared geopolitical interests, it stresses the importance of respect for the autonomy and different purposes of the two organisations.

Source: Government of Malta.