The European Union is the first partner of the UN
Cooperation UN/EU - Syria - Remarks to the press by Mr. François Delattre, Permanent Representative of France to the United Nations - 9 May 2017
Two quick words. The first on the meeting we are about to have with Federica Mogherini. This is particularly timely as today is Europe Day. It is a very important day for us and we have the chance to welcome Federica Mogherini, the European Union High Representative.
You know that the European Union is the first partner of the United Nations in many aspects, in terms of peacekeeping in particular. EU Member States contribute to 40% of the UN budget for peacekeeping. I think it is important to remember that.
The European Union is also engaged on all fronts, diplomatic, economic, military, sustainable development, in partnership with the United Nations. The EU is leading 15 military and civilian operations on the ground in constant cooperation with the UN. So there is a growing strategic partnership between the UN and the EU, that we only want to consolidate and develop.
And today more than ever, the European Union is a solid and indispensable partner for the United Nations.
One word on the Astana accord.
France took note of the agreement between Russia, Iran and Turkey announced on Thursday in Astana which aims at setting up de-escalation zones in Syria.
The question today is do we have all elements we need to understand the substance of the agreement and the way it is going to be implemented? This is really the key question and the answer to this question is not yet.
So we believe it’s important that we have a meeting of the Security Council to get all the clarity needed before engaging on a draft resolution. I believe many members of the Council are waiting for this discussion on the details of the agreement that we need.
Our priority remains crystal clear: we want a complete stop to all combats and violence so that humanitarian aid can get through without any obstacles, on all the Syrian territory, including the besieged zones, which continue to suffer as we speak.
Q: What are the specific details that you want about the de-escalation zones?
We want, and it is perfectly objective, to have all the elements we need in order to engage seriously, in goof faith, into a serious negotiation. And for the time being we lack some of the key elements on the substance of the agreement in itself and on the way it should be implemented. On the two fronts we need some more elements, which is perfectly legitimate and objective.