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On 8 October 2015 in Luxembourg will take place the High level Conference on the Eastern Mediterranean – Western Balkans Route. Jean Asselborn, minister for Foreign and European Affairs, minister for Immigration and Asylum, and Federica Mogherini, High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Vice-President of the Commission, convened this meeting, in order to discuss with all relevant partners the importance of this route in the increased migratory flows coming from the Middle East.
EU Ambassadors within the Political and Security Committee agreed to start the first step of the second phase of the operation as of 7 October 2015 and approved the corresponding rules of engagement. The EU naval operation against human smugglers in the Mediterranean will be able to board, search, seize and divert vessels suspected of being used for human smuggling or trafficking on the high seas, in line with international law. The Political and Security Committee also agreed that EU NAVFOR Med should be renamed "Sophia" after the name given to the baby born on the ship of the operation which rescued her mother on 22 August 2015 off the coast of Libya.
During the IAEA's 59th General Conference, which is taking place at the organisation's headquarters in Vienna between 14 and 18 September, 2015, the 164 Member States will discuss the big issues linked to the use of nuclear energy and principally those related to non-proliferation. Within the context of the Luxembourg Presidency of the Council of the European Union, the Minister of Health, Lydia Mutsch, presented an EU declaration.
An Informal Meeting of Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the EU (Gymnich) was held in Luxembourg on 4 and 5 September 2015 and focused on the migratory crisis. Luxembourg's Minister of Foreign and European Affairs, Jean Asselborn, stressed in particular the need for the distribution of asylum seekers and refugees to be based on established criteria. He was supported by the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini, who highlighted the importance of setting up a mechanism for sharing responsibilities and called for a truly common and rapid system.
The EU's response to migratory pressure has been at the heart of statements made ahead of the Informal Meeting of Ministers for Foreign Affairs of the EU to be held on 4 and 5 September 2015 in Luxembourg. Luxembourg's Minister for Foreign and European Affairs, Jean Asselborn, seeks a European solution to migratory pressure and calls for solidarity, stressing the need for a system of quotas or a plan for the "humane" distribution of migrants. For the German Minister for Foreign Affairs, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, a "common European asylum policy with common standards and procedures in Europe" is needed, a position shared by his Italian counterpart Paolo Gentiloni. Meanwhile, the Hungarian Minister, Péter Szijjártó, stated that Hungary - currently facing "a tragic situation" - complies with all European regulations.
The Chamber of Deputies organised the interparliamentary conference on the common foreign and security policy (CFSP) in Luxembourg on 5 and 6 September 2015. Nicolas Schmit, the minister responsible for relations with the European Parliament during the Luxembourg Presidency of the EU Council, spoke on European challenges relating to the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP).
At the joint invitation of the Foreign and European Affairs Minister, Jean Asselborn, and the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini, the EU Ministers of Foreign Affairs will meet on 4 and 5 September 2015 in Luxembourg for their customary informal Gymnich meeting.
In his speech to the European Union (EU) Ambassadors' Conference held on 3 September 2015 in Brussels, Luxembourg's Minister for Foreign and European Affairs, Jean Asselborn, called for a European Asylum System. Although the current system has a "European focus", "national management risks leading to striking differences between the length of proceedings and the international protection recognition rate", he explained. In his capacity as Minister of Immigration and Asylum, Jean Asselborn invited the Member States to "reconsider the logic of the system" at the extraordinary Justice and Home Affairs (JHA) Council on 14 September 2015. The EU needs a specialised European jurisdiction to hear cases on international protection, applying common rules concerning the length of proceedings and granting approvals, considered Jean Asselborn.
The informal meeting of Defence Ministers of the European Union will be held in Luxembourg at the European Convention Centre Luxembourg (ECCL) on 2 and 3 September 2015. Chaired by the Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Defence, Étienne Schneider, the first session of the Meeting of EU Defence Ministers will focus on the follow-up of the European Council in June 2015. In the second session, chaired by the Commission Vice-President, High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini, Ministers will be briefed on the current CSDP operations (common security and defence policy).
Co-chaired by Luxembourg's Minister of Defence, Etienne Schneider, and the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini, an informal meeting of the Ministers of Defense of the European Union (EU) was held in Luxembourg on 2 and 3 September 2015. The first session focused on the results and implementation of the conclusions of the European Council in June 2015. The second session addressed current CSDP operations (Common Security and Defence Policy) and, in particular, the EUNAVFOR MED naval operation, in respect of which the High Representative called for the launch of the second phase of the operation which provides for the seizure of vessels used by smugglers and to apprehend them in international waters. The High Representative noted "a broad consensus" among Ministers of Defence and expressed hope that it would lead to a decision being taken "in the forthcoming weeks, not months".