The COVID-19 crisis has shaken up all habits and forced everyone to review certain operating modes. This was also the case for the FPS Foreign Affairs, where teleworking was the rule, even though it had to carry out one of its fundamental tasks: assisting Belgians abroad. Not simple when the crisis was worldwide: “It is as if you had 200 earthquakes and many aftershocks at the same time, including in Belgium”, says Minister Goffin.
The Minister for Foreign Affairs, Philippe Goffin (MR) states that: "Following the adoption on 30 June of the European recommendation which gradually authorises non-essential travel from some 15 countries outside the European Union, Belgium has begun consultations with experts from the public services concerned with a view to achieving a cautious reopening of its borders".
Minister of Foreign Affairs and Defense Philippe Goffin welcomes the adoption on Tuesday, June 30, 2020 of new conclusions of the Council of the European Union concerning the relationship between the European Union (EU) and Africa, to which Belgium has actively contributed and which will serve as a basis for discussions with a view to redefining our relationship with our African partners.
Minister of Foreign Affairs Philippe Goffin welcomes the resolution adopted today by the United Nations Security Council in New York on the Covid-19 pandemic. With resolution 2532, the Security Council calls for ninety-day humanitarian ceasefires in all conflict zones around the world to deal with the Covid-19 pandemic.
Minister of Foreign Affairs and Defence Philippe Goffin is pleased that the international conference 'Supporting the future of Syria and the region', which took place through video conference today, on 30 June 2020, managed to draw attention to the difficult humanitarian situation of the Syrian population and to advocate renewed efforts for a political solution to the conflict in Syria.
The European Member States adopted today a recommendation that allows countries from the EU and Schengen zone (EU+) to allow non-essential travel from 14 countries outside the EU+ as of 1 July. On the basis of the EU framework, the Belgian government will soon evaluate when and under what conditions non-essential travellers from these 14 countries will be allowed to re-enter Belgian territory. In addition, the exceptions for essential travel will be extended.
On 29 and 30 June, the European Union organises the fourth Brussels Conference on Supporting the Future of Syria and the Region. Belgium will also take part in this meeting, which brings together all the relevant actors to discuss the effective approach to the situation. The aim is to support the United Nations in its efforts towards a comprehensive political solution and to mobilise resources for Syrian citizens and neighbouring countries hosting refugees from Syria. The meeting will also provide an opportunity for important dialogue with civil society actors.
Belgium condemns the deadly attack on MONUSCO, the UN peacekeeping mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo, on 22 June. A confrontation between an armed group and UN blue helmets in Beni, left at least one person dead and several wounded.
Exactly six years ago today, the United Nations (UN) General Assembly declared June 19 the International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in Conflict. On this day the international community is reminded of its collective responsibility to continue to fight against rape, sexual slavery, forced marriages, certain forms of human trafficking and any other form of conflict related sexual violence. Belgium also calls for special attention to be paid to the women, men and children who survived such violence, and pays tribute to those who are committed to stopping it.