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14 May 2007
THE EUROPEAN UNION
9471/07 (Presse 103)
(NOTE: Development issues to be
covered on 15 May)
2800th Council Meeting
General Affairs and External Relations
Brussels, 14 May 2007
Mr Frank-Walter Steinmeier
Federal Minister for Foreign Affairs of Germany
Ministers, over lunch, had an exchange of views on the Middle East peace process in the perspective of their meeting with the Arab League.
In a joint informal meeting in the margins of the Council, they met, for the first time, with a delegation of the Arab League composed of the League's Secretary-General, the foreign ministers of Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Morocco, Lebanon, Syria, the Palestinian Authority and Qatar and a representative from Egypt. The Arab League delegation presented the Arab Peace Initiative to EU foreign ministers. After a discussion, both sides agreed to follow-up on the meeting by continuing to work together with a view to supporting efforts towards a settlement in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and to enhancing cooperation between the EU and the Arab League.
At its 23 April meeting, the Council welcomed the Arab Peace Initiative as reaffirmed in the declaration of the Arab League Summit in Riyadh on 29 March, supported it as a major element in moving the Middle East peace process forward and expressed the EU's readiness to work closely with the Arab League.