european union

President Trump's Trip Abroad
June 2, 2017

Mark Dillen on the negative image of President Trump's first trip overseas.

The 4th “transatlantic dialogue” took place at the University of Luxembourg on Campus Belval in Esch-sur-Alzette. The theme was “creating human bonds through cultural diplomacy”. 320 attendees and 100 cultural actors from Europe, the United States, Mexico, Japan, South Africa and Saudi Arabia discussed and performed around the notion on how cultural diplomacy has a vital role to play in international relations.In 55 discussions and workshops, participants studied inter-sectionalism and common bonds; and how to bridge differences by understanding cultural identities. 

Ukraine’s bid to eventually join the European Union wins a critical vote, a victory in its war against Russia and for democratic values. [...]  At a time when three major countries are pulling away from Europe, Ukraine’s eagerness to embrace the EU and its values shows how much other countries want in. [...] For others outside the EU, however, the allure is a deeper theme, that of civic values such as equality and openness. And they are willing to make big sacrifices to join the Continent’s biggest club.

Moldova's foreign ministry on Monday expelled five Russian diplomats, ordering Moscow to remove them in a move that outraged the country's pro-Russian president. The foreign ministry declared the diplomats "personae non grata," giving the relevant note to the Russian ambassador to Moldova Farit Mukhametshin on Monday, a foreign ministry aide, Artur Sarbu, told AFP, without explaining why they were being expelled.

Trump’s trip left a big impression on our European allies. So much, that German Chancellor Angela Merkel turned around and announced at a campaign rally that “the times when we could completely rely on others are, to an extent, over.” Joseph Nye’s theory is that when the citizens of another country have a positive view of the U.S. it improves our chances of being able to achieve our foreign policy goals with that country. This soft power, the power of attraction contrasts with hard power, the power of coercion, such as military might and economic sanctions.

Stefano Manservisi, the EU's Director General for International Development Cooperation visited Somalia and signed a € 48 million new support package to strengthen governance, promote resilience and support vocational training. During his visit, Manservisi held talks with President Farmaajo and met with federal and regional leaders and confirmed the EU's commitment to supporting Somalia in consolidating achievements in security, governance, productive sectors and technical cooperation.

The European Union’s new Consensus on Development stresses the role played by co-operatives in the implementation of the UN’s development agenda for 2030. [...] The EU is the world’s largest development aid donor, accounting for more than half of assistance worldwide. The consensus is a response to the UN’s 2030 agenda for sustainable development. [...] The EU says it will also promote private sector initiatives and social enterprises, co-operatives, and women and youth entrepreneurs.

Today we celebrate the international day of cultural diversity. Since the very start, cultural diversity has been at the core of the European project. Unity in diversity is the motto of our Union, because Europe has never been just one but many. It is thanks to our cultural diversity and our commitment to dialogue that for the last 60 years we have been able successfully to face new challenges and obstacles, to change and progress.

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