Russia is no longer the EU’s strategic partner, Mogherini?
EurActiv bssb.be 07.09.2014
Mogherini, the Italian foreign minister appointed to become the next EU foreign affairs chief, said that Russia was no longer the EU’s “strategic partner”, referring to the phrase which describes the relationship between the Union and its largest neighbour in hundreds of official documents.
Mogherini refuted views that she had little interest in the Ukraine situation, stating that her first visit, as a minister under the new Italian President, was to Kyiv, also saying that she has been holding weekly calls with her Ukrainian counterpart Pavlo Klimkin, who she called her good friend.
Asked if she would make changes to the Italian Presidency programme, in which the word Ukraine appears only once in a sentence saying that EU attention would be “chiefly devoted to support of the normalisation process and internal stability”, Mogherini said this was not a problem.
“If there is one sentence that I would change in the program, it is the first one in the chapter relating to Russia […] that says Russia remains a strategic partner in tackling regional and global issues. I would change this”, she said.
“I think Russia stays a strategic player in the regional and global challenges, we like it or not, but I don’t think it’s a strategic partner anymore”, Mogherini said and added:
“I wish it could go back in the future, I wish Russia would choose to go back to be a strategic partner in the future, but I don’t think this is what is happening now”.
Mogherini didn’t answer the question, regarding Ukraine’s ambitions to join NATO. Ukrainian PM Arseny Yatsenyuk said that his government will introduce a proposal in Parliament to change the non-aligned status of the country, and to request membership of the Atlantic alliance.
EurActiv – bssb.be