FM Droutsas addresses EU General Affairs Council

The European Union demands the immediate ceasefire, the protection of non-combatants and expresses its readiness to organise a humanitarian operation in coordination with the UN, according to the conclusions adopted Tuesday by the 27 Foreign ministers in Luxembourg on developments in North Africa and the Middle East and also expresses its solidarity to member-states facing immigration pressures.

Greek Foreign Minister Dimitris Droutsas, in light of Wednesday's first session of the Contact Group on Libya in Qatar at which he will represent Greece, stressed that "we must utilise this week of diplomatic consultations to enable us to promote the starting of a political process." Droutsas also made a briefing on Libyan emissary Obeidi's visit to Athens, last month.

The Foreign minister also reiterated Greece's adherrence to the respect of the sovereignty, territorial integrity and independence of Libya and called on the international community to help the creation of preconditions so that the Libyan people will be able to decide their future.

Reffering to general developments in Syria, Bahrein and Yemen, Droutsas said that the EU must not have double standards, but must tell things with their name and demand respect for human rights in all the countries in the region without exception. As regards Syria in particular, he said that the specific conjuncture might become the cause for changes but this necessitates substantive reforms on behalf of President Assad.

He also made a briefing on his contacts in Cairo on Monday, stressing that the EU has undertaken specific commitments towards the Egyptian perople to support the great development effort that is starting now.

Droutsas will be leaving for Doha in Qatar on Wednesday morning, where the first meeting of the Contact Group on Libya will be held, in which 21 countries are participating, the UN and regional organisations. On the sidelines of the session, a meeting is being scheduled between the Greek Foreign minister and the representative of Libya's rebel forces Mahmoud Djibrill.

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