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Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg Attends Foreign Affairs Council in Luxembourg

AUSTRIA, April 10 - On 11th April 2022, Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg attended the meeting of the Foreign Affairs Council in Luxembourg. The focus of this meeting of EU foreign ministers was the Russian war of aggression against Ukraine as well as coordinating support for Ukraine at a bilateral and multilateral level. Council members also discussed the stability of the overall region and further sanctions against Russia.

During the meeting of EU foreign ministers, Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg also emphasised the significance of Austrian Chancellor Karl Nehammer’s trip to Kyjiw and Moscow. As a neutral country and the official seat of numerous international organisations, Austria holds an important role in building bridges between East and West. However, the Chancellor’s trip will also clearly address the suffering of the civilian population and the accusations of war crimes.

Any voice that makes it clear to President Putin what the reality outside the walls of the Kremlin really looks like is not a lost voice,

said Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg.

In the face of a potential Russian offensive in the eastern part of the country, Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg anticipates that the brutality of Russia's war of aggression in Ukraine will increase even further. Given this background, Alexander Schallenberg argued that no opportunity should be missed to end the humanitarian suffering.

The point is that we cannot miss any opportunity and must use every possibility to end the humanitarian hell in Ukraine,

said the foreign minister.

Also under discussion were the collaboration with the Western Balkan countries and the war’s destabilising effects on the region. Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg emphasised that the goal now was to minimise the impact of the war, and to support the Western Balkan states in the face of rising prices for food and energy. In view of the current geopolitical situation, a credible European perspective is more important than ever, he said. That is why, on the initiative of the C5 countries (Czech Republic, Slovakia, Slovenia, Austria, Hungary), strategic talks on the Western Balkans will be scheduled at EU level in May.

Furthermore, the foreign ministers discussed the EU’s Global Gateway strategy. The Russian war of aggression in Ukraine has shown how quickly supply chains can overloaded or collapse. Through the Global Gateway Strategy, up to 300 billion euros are to flow into developing and emerging countries to finance infrastructure projects to improve energy, transport networks and digital infrastructure worldwide. In addition, the Foreign Affairs Council addressed the situations in Mali, Libya and Yemen.