Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Slovak Republic Miroslav Lajčák will participate at the EU Foreign Affairs Council to be held on 23rd April 2012, in Luxembourg.
Foreign Affairs Council (FAC) will start with a discussion on Burma/Myanmar in the light of recent encouraging democratic changes in the country. To encourage the reform process, the Council will suspend restrictive measures imposed on the Government with the exception of the arms embargo.
Ministers will then discuss the future of further EU engagement in Afghanistan, notably in the context of ongoing preparations for the NATO Summit in May in Chicago and withdrawal of armed forces from Afghanistan by 2014. Slovakia will continue its participation in ISAF and EUPOL mission in Afghanistan.
The Council will assess the crisis in various African countries, starting with Mali (situation after the military coup d´état in March followed by the seizure of the northern part of the country by Tuareg rebels), Sudan and South Sudan (South Sudan's occupation of town and area Heglig) and Guinea-Bissau (situation after the recent military coup d´état). Council conclusion for these three countries will be adopted.
Ministers will also discuss the events concerning Syria, in particular the implementation of the Kofi Annan´s plan as well as further steps concerning the immediate deployment of an advanced team of military observers in Syria. The Council will adopt conclusions and decision on extending the EU sanctions against Syria.
During the working luncheon the Middle East peace process will be discussed. The High Representative Catherine Ashton will also brief Ministers on results if renewed negotiations with Iran concerning its controversial nuclear programme that took place on 14 April in Istanbul and should continue next month in Baghdad.