Ursula von der Leyen reported on the alignment of Africa and Europe’s interests, stating that they are more in sync than ever before. This was noted in the live updates.

Ursula von der Leyen reported on the alignment of Africa and Europe’s interests, stating that they are more in sync than ever before. This was noted in the live updates.

“Europe is united not only by our shared destinies, but also by our aligned interests, now more than ever before.”

She added:

We must all transition to renewable energy and adjust to the effects of climate change. We must also prepare our workforce for future employment opportunities. It is our collective goal to prevent further loss of life on migratory paths and provide opportunities for our youth.

Not only are we connected by our geographical location, but we are also dedicated to ensuring mutual advantages for all individuals within our community.

Therefore, we need to be specific.

The president of the commission stated that Italy’s proposals and the EU’s initiatives are complementary.

I am thankful to Italy for prioritizing collaboration with Africa in its foreign policy and during its G7 presidency.

The latest Mattei proposal is a valuable addition to our ongoing collaboration and complements our European Global Gateway.

As you are aware, Global Gateway is a 150 billion euro investment initiative for Africa, led by team Europe.

President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen delivers a speech next to President of the European parliament Roberta Metsola and Italy’s Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani, inside the Madama Palace (Senate) as Italy hosts the Italy-Africa summit, in Rome.

Africa as she strives to position her country at the forefront of European cooperation on the African continent in return for curbing illegal migration.

  • The leader of Italy held a summit in Rome with senior officials from Africa and the European Union.

  • Meloni explained that her strategy was built upon various foundations, including education and skill-building, healthcare, farming, access to clean water, and energy resources.

  • The chairman of the African Union Commission, Moussa Faki Mahamat, stated that their partnership is built on freedom and agreement, without any party forcing their own agenda.

  • During the summit, Roberta Metsola, the president of the European parliament, stated that the connection between the two continents should be defined by a genuine alliance of equals.

  • The president of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, stated that it is crucial to take action and work together, as interests are now more aligned than ever.

  • Charles Michel, president of the European Council, stated that nations were collaborating on tangible initiatives that would significantly impact people’s lives in areas such as energy, security, and resilience.

  • Experts noted that Meloni’s proposal lacked significant measures addressing environmental concerns, despite this being a central aspect of the plan.

  • French farmers who are operating tractors have followed through on their warning to block the city of Paris for an unspecified amount of time. This has resulted in the halting of traffic on eight major highways leading into the city, as a result of a dispute regarding regulations, wages, and taxes.

  • NGOs and lawyers report a rise in the recruitment of individuals from former Soviet republics in central Asia by people-smugglers to steer boats transporting individuals from Turkey to Italy.

  • According to NGOs and lawyers, Italy is the country in question.

    The migrants are taken by sea from Turkey to Italy, often using sailing boats, as an alternative to the longer overland route through the Balkans where border guards in Croatia and Slovenia have engaged in illegal pushbacks of asylum seekers at the EU border.

    In 2023, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) reported that 7,153 individuals arrived on the coasts of Sicily, Puglia, or Calabria from the Turkish ports of İzmir, Bodrum, and Çanakkale. Each person paid more than €8,000 (£6,820) for the journey.

    An investigation conducted by the Italian organization Arci Porco Rosso and the non-governmental group Borderline Europe revealed that out of 68 individuals detained in 2023 by Italian authorities for illegally transporting asylum seekers from Turkey, at least 18 were from Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, Azerbaijan, and Tajikistan.

    The boat operators from Central Asia have taken over the roles of Ukrainian and Russian captains, who were previously hired by Turkish smuggling groups that control the route.

    Please refer to the complete narrative by clicking on the link provided.

    The continent of Africa was named after the founder of the Italian oil company Eni. However, experts believe that she did not have much input on the environmental concerns that are supposed to be a fundamental aspect of the strategy.

    According to Giulia Giordano, a representative from think tank Ecco, there was minimal discussion of climate change. However, Meloni did mention a shortage of water as a contributing factor to migration.

    According to Giordano, Italy’s goal to serve as a bridge for energy between Europe and Africa remains the focus of cooperative efforts.

    Meloni emphasized the importance of guaranteeing energy security in Italy while also promoting growth in Africa. Though the use of oil and gas was not explicitly stated, the inclusion of Eni’s CEO among the delegates and the mention of Italy’s private sector suggests that the industry will continue to play a significant role in the plan.

    In the past 24 months, Europe has increasingly turned to Africa as a source of energy, leading to a decrease in imports of Russian gas. The EU is promoting the use of renewable energy in countries such as Namibia and Morocco to produce hydrogen for powering European factories.

    Meanwhile, European energy companies with a strong demand for African oil have been granted permits to conduct drilling operations throughout the continent.

    Dean Bhebhe, a member of the advocacy organization Don’t Gas Africa, expressed disapproval of the Italy-Africa summit for neglecting the perspectives of African civil society.

    The Mattei plan represents Italy’s desire for fossil fuel production, which could potentially reduce Africa to simply a means for supplying energy to Europe. This ambition disregards the pressing issue of climate change and ignores the perspectives of African civil society.

    The prime minister, Gabriel Attal, pledged over the weekend to “surround” Paris by causing disruption on the seven major highways leading into the city by early afternoon.

    A minimum of 1,000 tractors were anticipated to participate in the protest. They were projected to position themselves within a distance of 20-25 miles from the city center, with the goal of limiting entry and exit. This may cause disruptions in reaching the Charles de Gaulle-Roissy airport to the north and Orly airport to the south, as well as the primary fresh food market in Rungis.

    The officials recommended that drivers avoid or delay any unnecessary road trips.

    Rural farmers, especially the numerous independent producers in the country, express frustration with the bureaucratic and regulatory burdens imposed by the EU and France. They argue that these obstacles are threatening the traditional way of life in rural areas. The farmers are requesting more equitable prices for their products, the ongoing provision of subsidies for agricultural diesel to power their tractors and other machinery, and financial support for those who practice organic farming.

    Read more here.

    According to an official from the EU, the report in the Financial Times which referenced a document proposing a plan to intentionally target Hungary’s economic vulnerabilities and undermine its currency in order to weaken investor confidence, if the country fails to provide aid to Ukraine, does not actually detail any specific actions towards Hungary.

    The official said:

    The Financial Times article mentions a background note prepared by the Secretariat of the council, detailing the current state of the Hungarian economy. The Secretariat takes full responsibility for the content of the note.

    This is an informative document that does not accurately represent the current state of negotiations for the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF), the EU’s long-term budget, among Sherpas and EU leaders. The document does not detail any particular strategy regarding the MFF and Ukraine Facility, nor does it outline any plans concerning Hungary.

    Discussions within the MFF are currently in progress and have consistently centered around reaching a mutually agreeable compromise among all 27 EU member states. The discussions among Sherpas and EU leaders are guided by the principles of open communication, consultation, and finding common ground in the best interest of all parties involved.

    When asked for more information, the official also stated:

    The preceding document does not provide a specific plan, but instead offers a suggestion that deviates from the negotiation strategy.

    Today, at the Italy-Africa summit, Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni urged for a fresh start in the connection between Italy and the continent.

    According to Reuters, she expressed the belief that there is potential for a new phase in the history of our partnership, one based on mutual cooperation rather than exploiting or patronizing Africa.

    The Italian leader announced that the initiative would start with a fund of over 5.5 billion euros.

    Meloni also spoke about immigration.

    Preventing mass immigration and defeating human traffickers requires addressing the root causes that compel individuals to leave their homes.

    At the Italy-Africa summit, Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission, emphasized the importance of taking tangible steps towards cooperation.

    The leader of the commission stated that there is currently a strong and renewed collaboration between Africa and Europe. This is due to the fact that not only are our fates intertwined, but our interests are also more aligned than ever before.

    She added:

    It is imperative that we transition to renewable energy and prepare for the effects of climate change. We must also equip our workforce with skills for future job opportunities. Additionally, we strive to prevent the tragic loss of life during migration and provide opportunities for our youth.

    Not only our shared geography, but also our dedication to creating mutual advantages for all individuals has brought us together.

    We need to be specific.

    The president of the commission stated that the plans of Italy and the EU’s programs go hand in hand.

    I am thankful to Italy for prioritizing collaboration with Africa in their foreign policy and during their G7 presidency.

    The latest Mattei proposal is a significant addition to our current partnership, and it complements our European Global Gateway.

    Global Gateway is a 150 billion euro investment initiative focused on Africa, driven by team Europe.

    Speaking at the Italy-Africa summit, the president of the European parliament, Roberta Metsola, said:

    If Africa succeeds, Europe will also succeed – and the entire world will benefit. We can progress together.

    She added:

    The bond between our continents should be marked by a true partnership of equals, one where we recognize the past and work towards a shared future. This is the key to our collective prosperity and the fulfillment of our peoples’ potential.

    The president of the parliament emphasized the need for a genuine partnership, stressing the importance of adapting to the changing world.

    According to Metsola, we are now in a time of increased global dependence, where working together is crucial. She emphasizes the importance of being truthful with ourselves, recognizing our successes and acknowledging areas for improvement.

    The president said:

    We can sustainably grow together without sacrificing one another.

    She emphasized the importance of forming partnerships in order to address migration in a comprehensive manner.

    Source: theguardian.com