By Ata Ufuk ┼×eker
Brussels letter, April 3

The Foreign Affairs Council will meet in Luxemburg on Monday when ministers will discuss the EU strategy for Syria and Libya. EU ministers will exchange views with the Secretary General of the Arab League and discuss key issues for the region including the situation in Syria, Libya, and the Middle-East peace process.

A conference to support the future of Syria and the region will take place in Brussels on Tuesday and Wednesday.  The European Union, Germany, Kuwait, Norway, Qatar, the United Kingdom and the United Nations will co-chair the Brussels conference.The conference, which will be held at ministerial level, will bring together 70 countries, international organizations and civil society. The conference will seek to assess where the international community stands collectively in fulfilling commitments made at the London conference in February 2016 and agree on additional efforts.

United Nations Secretary General António Guterres, EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini, Prime Ministers of Syria's neighbors: Hani Al-Mulki of Jordan, and Saad Al-Hariri of Lebanon, Foreign Ministers of other co-chairs: Sigmar Gabriel of Germany; Sheikh Sabah Khalid Al Hamad Al Sabah of Kuwait, Borge Brende of Norway, Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani of Qatar, Boris Johnson of the United Kingdom will attend the event.


-European Parliament

European Parliament plenary sessions will take place in Strasbourg this week.

Germany's newly elected Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier will address MEPs in a formal sitting on Tuesday.

Eurogroup President and leading “Troika” figure Jeroen Dijsselbloem was invited to Parliament to explain the state of play on the second review of the Economic adjustment program for Greece in a debate on Tuesday.

Political groups will set out their Brexit priorities in a key debate before talks start on the U.K.’s withdrawal from the EU. MEPs will then vote on a resolution officially setting out the European Parliament’s key concerns and goals throughout the process on Wednesday.

An informal agreement between the Parliament and the Council on wholesale price caps for carrying “roaming” data transfers between EU countries will be put to a final vote on Thursday. Capping wholesale roaming prices is a necessary step towards the full abolition of retail roaming surcharges on June 15, 2017, which will enable mobile phone users to transfer data while in other EU countries, just as they do at home, without incurring extra fees.

Ukrainian citizens will have the right to visa-free travel to the EU under a draft law to be voted in a plenary session on Thursday. The text has already been informally agreed with the Council. It is likely to enter into force at the start of June.

The Eurogroup will gather in Brussels on Friday. Ministers are expected to discuss the Greek economic adjustment program.


03 Apr,2017