Socialists European Affairs Ministers meet in Athens

Socialists European Affairs Ministers meet in Athens

Athens, September 8, 2016/Independent Balkan News Agency

By Spiros Sideris

The road mapped by Alexis Tsipras for cooperation with European Socialists seem to be continuing in multiple layers as the European Socialists Ministers for European Affairs and top officials of the party and the European Parliament will visit Athens.

With the aim to formulate common positions for a progressive Europe with a “social face”, in view of the informal European Council of Bratislava and the EU’s major challenges, EU Socialists Ministers for European Affairs and top officials of the European Parliament and the European Socialist Party will meet in Athens next Saturday.

The meeting is a continuation of a similar meeting of the European Socialist ministers on July 15 in Rome, in which Greek ministers Nikos Pappas and Nikos Xidakis had been invited to attend. Indeed, as noted by the Office of the Deputy Foreign Minister, the meeting takes place in the context of diverse diplomatic initiative undertaken by the Greek government: On September 9 takes place in Athens the Euro-Mediterranean Summit at the invitation of Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, and on September 8-9 in Rhodes the Conference on Security and Stability in the Mediterranean at the initiative of Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias.

“There is understanding both by the people and by some leaderships that some problems are common and can have common approaches. We need pragmatism and flexibility. With the proposal for a permanent dialogue between the Left and Social Democracy, Greece is on the table with the progressive forces of Europe. We must reinvigorate a new faith in the people; that Europe is not one that destroys prosperity”, said the host of the meeting, Deputy Foreign Minister Nikos Xidakis.

The topics to be discussed at the works of the meeting will be: EU after UK’s exit polls, policies for the upgrade of the EU, deepening of integration, the fight against youth unemployment, labor protection and social rights, equitable development, tackling refugee and migration issue, EU security and foreign policy, and active link between citizens and the EU institutions.

For the meeting of the Socialist Ministers for European Affairs will attend in Athens, as guests of Nikos Xidakis, French State Secretary for European Affairs, Harlem Desiree, Italian minister for European Affairs to the Prime Minister Sandro Gozi, Portuguese State Secretary for European Affairs Margarida Marques, State Secretary for European Affairs of Slovakia Ivan Korcok, deputy Prime Minister and Minister for European Affairs of Malta Luis Greta and Vice President of the European Parliament Dimitris Papadimoulis.

On behalf of the Greek government will also take part, State Minister Nikos Pappas.

The meeting will be held at the St. Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center at the Falirico Delta.