News from Berlin

EU Foreign Affairs Council Meets Following Flight MH17 Crash

July 24th, 2014

News from Berlin – Several days after the crash of flight MH17 over eastern Ukraine, which resulted in a death toll of 298 people, the Foreign Ministers of the 28 EU countries met in Brussels on July the 22nd for the Foreign Affairs Council.

The discussion emphasised on the situation in Ukraine, and especially on the apparent shooting down of the Malaysian Airlines Boeing 777 on the 17th July. Commenting on the matter, the German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier stressed the disgraceful behaviour of the pro-Russian separatists at the crash site.

Russia was notably criticised for its complacency, and its unwillingness to de-escalate the conflict. According to Steinmeier, the conflict in Ukraine could only be resolved by a ceasefire, in conjunction with an effective border control between Ukraine and its neighbour Russia.

There was a resounding consensus that Europe should be more assertive in the Ukraine crisis. The Foreign Ministers have in consequence agreed to ramp up pressure on member states that do not cooperate with agreed sanctions against Russia.

The ministers agreed on three measures; the expansion of the criteria enabling sanctions to be applied, the accelerated implementations of such criteria, and the elaboration of export restrictions – such as in the area of military equipment – by the EU Commission.

News from Berlin – Berlin Global