On 15 March 2019, HR/VP Federica Mogherini forwarded her reply to the letter we had sent her in preparation for the EU-LAS Summit which occurred on 24-25 February in Sharm El-Sheikh. This letter was signed by 31 MEPs from different political groups.
The letter of Ms. Mogherini represents a lukewarm reply to our request of addressing human rights issues with the proper vigour expected. She reiterated that human rights, alongside regional conflicts, climate change and terrorism, were tackled for “the EU constantly and consistently raises issues related to human rights with all partners throughout the world, and the EU-League of Arab States Summit was no exception.” In this regard, she highlighted the fact that the joint Summit Declaration is committed to upholding human rights issues and international human rights law.
In the final part of the letter, Ms. Mogherini remarked once again that “the EU remains vocal on human rights, governance, and economic development.” The respect of human rights embodies a key principle in European Union’s foreign policy, which aims at developing an institutional relationship with the League of Arab States.
The European Centre for Democracy and Human Rights (ECDHR) is disappointed by the unenthusiastic answer of Ms. Mogherini. Cognizant of the leading role of the European Union in fighting inequalities and violations of human rights, we expected a different outcome of the EU-LAS Summit, as well as a less general letter. ECDHR restates the necessity to address human rights issues more strongly.