"The last light of hope is dying out in Aleppo. Despite all the efforts deployed so far, the EU has been absent and our High Representative has been working hard, only to conclude that, if the policy of the carrots hasn’t worked so far, neither have the sticks brought their effect," says MEP Elmar Brok, Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs and author of the Report on the Implementation of the Common Foreign and Security Policy, adopted today. “It will be up to the European Council at their upcoming summit to show the way forward in terms of the Common Foreign and Security Policy," he insisted.
"The passivity that we often showed is no longer permitted. 70% - or even more - of European citizens claim that more Europe is needed when it comes to security. It is now important to change the mindset of the Member States so that they become more favourable to joint diplomacy, which would enable them to act together, and more efficiently. It is the Member States, not EU citizens, that have been blocking this development so far,” insisted Elmar Brok.
As the lines between external and internal threats become more and more blurred, the EPP Group believes that the EU’s external action can only work if based on three pillars: Defence, Development and Diplomacy – defined as the three 'Ds'.
“The migratory movements which were preoccupying us continue; in Europe itself, violations of international rights are being committed in a war-like way, as we have witnessed in Ukraine. In the Mediterranean, development problems are at the origin of growing insecurity and of a growing number of people wanting to leave. It has become evident that Russia’s behaviour is contrary to international law, including as regards the US presidential campaign, which in turn undermines the credibility of NATO itself. This implies that we need to develop our own defence capabilities and be able to take over from NATO, if the latter appears unable to function as it should,” added Elmar Brok.
“Development is a condition for security, but only when stability and the rule of law are granted,” he stressed. “For this, we need to strengthen our cooperation in the field of security and defence. Member States need to better spend money through creating synergies, also in terms of defence research. I hope that the developments that we have witnessed over recent years can be translated into concrete decisions at the upcoming Council meeting,” he said.
“It is about nothing more than giving EU citizens the security they aspire to, to confront the fears fuelled by populists. As democrats, we need to provide security based on development and on human rights,” he stressed.