Extraordinary Foreign Affairs Council on Mali: extracts from the press conference by Catherine Ashton
Type: Summary of press conference
End production: 17/01/2013 First transmission: 17/01/2013
On 17 January 2013, Catherine Ashton, High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice-President of the EC, held a press conference following the extraordinary Foreign Affairs Council on Mali.
Only the original language version is authentic and it prevails in the event of its differing from the translated versions.
||General view of the press conference
||Catherine Ashton, High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice-President of the EC, at the press conference
||Soundbite by Catherine Ashton (in ENGLISH): We agreed to establish the EU mission to train and advise the Malian Armed Forces and we appointed French Brigadier General Francois Lecointre as mission commander. The first technical team for this mission will start preparatory work in Mali in the coming few days. We agreed to accelerate our work to support the African-led military mission to Mali, and are offering financial support to it through the African Peace Facility. We are also stepping up our humanitarian assistance. You will probably be aware that we have already mobilised over 93 million euros for the food crisis and political conflict in Mali.
It was very good to hear from Minister Coulibaly that he was committed to adopting a Roadmap he described as having two elements. The first was to "recover the North"; I think that is how he described it. To bring back the north to the country. The second in which we also have great interest is about the Roadmap towards elections.
||Cutaway of the audience
||Soundbite by Catherine Ashton (in ENGLISH): And the EU's role is to come and to support France in its operations. You have seen that in the support logistical and other that come from Member States, you have seen that, in bringing together our support today in the Foreign Affairs Council. And you have seen that in the ongoing work that we do, as 27 countries working together to provide a comprehensive approach to the short, medium and long term for the region. France is not alone, France is a key part of the EU and France has acted in exactly the right way in addressing a concern in response to request from the President of Mali and of course in the context of the international community.
||Cutaway of cameramen
||Soundbite by Catherine Ashton (in ENGLISH): On Algeria, I am going to say a very little. Information is coming in, we need to verify quite a lot of data information. And of course, we are in touch with our Member States who are the most concerned about this, they have individuals and of course with Algeria itself. But forgive mu because for obvious reasons, I won't say too much now.
||Departure of Catherine Ashton