General Affairs and External Relations Council: 2nd round table
End production: 18/02/2008 First transmission: 18/02/2008
The 18 February meeting of the EU Ministers for Foreign Affairs was dominated by the latest events in Kosovo. However divided on the issue, the 27 Member States tried to agree on a common position to the declaration of Kosovo as a sovereign State. Not all EU countries are willing to recognise a new State but Ireland, the United Kingdom, France, Germany and Italy were expected to officially confirm Kosovo's sovereignty following the meeting. Meanwhile, and despite Belgrade's opposition, the EU decided to send a civil mission composed of some 2,200 policemen, prosecutors and judges entrusted with the task of strengthening stability in Kosovo and ensuring that democratic standards are observed there. The EU will take 120 days - four months - to gradually deploy the mission. After this transition period, the transfer of authority from the UN mission currently in Kosovo to the EU would become effective. Other topics for discussion were the preparation of the European Council of March, the Middle East, Sudan/Chad, Kenya, Myanmar and the WTO/Doha Development Agenda.
Only the original language version is authentic and it prevails in the event of its differing from the translated versions.
||Petras Vaitiekūnas, Lithuanian Minister for Foreign Affairs (2 shots)
||Luís Amado, Portuguese Minister for Foreign Affairs, shaking hands with Louis Michel, Member of the EC in charge of Development and Humanitarian Aid
||Karel Schwarzenberg, Czech Minister for Foreign Affairs (2 shots)
||David Miliband, British Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, and Ján Kubiš, Slovakian Minister for Foreign Affairs (2 shots)
||Erato Kozakou-Marcoulis, Cypriot Minister for Foreign Affairs
||Dimitrij Rupel, Slovenian Minister for Foreign Affairs and President in office of the Council, with Olli Rehn, Member of the EC in charge of Enlargement
||Olli Rehn joining Louis Michel