On 14 December, EU High Representative Josep Borrell took part in a European Parliament plenary debate on the recent developments in the Eastern Partnership region.
Borrell underlined that “the last year and especially these last months have been particularly difficult and have tested all of us”.
“Several of our partner [countries] experienced conflicts, violent repression, unrest and popular demand for democratic values and reforms,” he added.
Borrell also mentioned that strengthening resilience was identified as the main objective of the future Eastern Partnership policy in March. He stressed that the EU will work with its partners on five areas of resilience – economic, democratic, environmental, digital and societal.
“I think it is key to empower civil society and independent media to increase accountability, to expose corruption and to enhance critical thinking,” he added. “There is no hidden agenda behind this approach. We are only guided by the values we believe in – free, open societies based on human rights and the fundamental rights of citizens.”
“I think there is a strong consensus that the framework has delivered and that we can be proud of many achievements,” he said. “But many challenges remain.”
In conclusion, Borrell stressed that stability, security and even economic prosperity in the entire Eastern Partnership region depend heavily on how the countries in the region are performing.
Find out more