Safadi Co-Chairs EU-Jordan Association Council Meeting

July 14, 2017

AMMAN — Federica Mogherini, the EU high representative for foreign affairs security policy, on Monday said that the EU highly appreciates Jordan's approach in the war against terrorism and extremism.
Mogherini also underlined the values of wisdom, moderation and unity that His Majesty King Abdullah called for in his speech to the European Parliament in Strasburg in 2015, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported.
The EU official's remarks came during a joint press conference with Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi, following the 12th meeting of the EU-Jordan Association Council that was held in Brussels. 
Safadi expressed the Kingdom's appreciation for the EU's approval to extend Jordan a soft loan of 200 million euros to support the budget, in light of mounting pressures brought about by regional circumstances and the Syrian refuge influx. 
Discussions addressed the Arab-Israeli conflict and efforts to re-launch the peace process until reaching a solution to the Palestinian cause, the “core regional conflict”, based on the two-state solution, Safadi noted.
In this regard, he said that Jordan relies on the EU to provide suitable circumstances to resume effective and serious talks in the Palestinian cause.
The Syrian crisis was also on the meeting’s agenda, the minister said, noting that he briefed Mogherini on the situation in southern Syria, where a Jordan-US-Russian deal led to a cease fire as of Sunday.
The agreement on southern Syria is part of efforts exerted to end war and destruction, and is the first step towards reaching a comprehensive ceasefire in the entire country, he said, reemphasising the Kingdom’s stance, shared by the EU, that there is no military solution to the Syrian crisis. 
Replying to a question on the Gulf crisis, Safadi expressed hope that involved countries would reach a solution within the Gulf Cooperation Council that ensures cooperation of all in building a better future for the region’s peoples.
For her part, Mogherini said that the talks constituted an opportunity to discuss issues of mutual interests and bilateral relations between Jordan and the EU.
She noted that both sides reached an agreement on a memorandum of understanding on a micro-finance project with the value of 380 million euros to support Jordan under the difficult regional conditions.
Meanwhile, Safadi on Monday agreed with his Belgian counterpart Didier Reynders to increase economic cooperation and political coordination. 
Safadi and Reynders discussed latest regional developments specially those concerning the two-state solution to resolve the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, according to the Jordan News Agency, Petra. 
The two officials also discussed the latest developments in the war on terrorism, stressing that terror is a common threat that does not belong to any nation or religion. 
The ministers looked into the situation in Syria. Safadi acquainted his counterpart with the efforts being made by Jordan, the United States and Russia to ensure a ceasefire and a de-escalation zone in the south of Syria. 
Safadi stressed that Jordan supports a comprehensive ceasefire on all Syrian lands as a step to forge a political solution that the Syrian people accepts. 
They also discussed the consequences of Syrian refugee influx and the burden it poses on Jordan, in addition to the need for the international community to continue its support and take on the responsibilities to help the Kingdom meet the increasing needs as a major refugee host. Safadi commended Belgium’s support in this regard. 
The top diplomat arrived in Brussels on Monday to co-chair the 12th meeting of the EU-Jordan Association Council alongside Federica Mogherini, the EU high representative for foreign affairs security policy and vice president of the EU Commission.
Jordan Times
July 11, 2017