The Bahraini Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr. Abdullatif bin Rashid Al-Zayani, met with the European Union's High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Josep Borrell, during a visit to Brussels on Wednesday (10 FebruarY).
Bahraini media say that in the meeting, Al-Zayani affirmed Bahrain's pride in the distinguished friendship between the Kingdom of Bahrain and the European Union and the development and growth it is witnessing, expressing the Kingdom's aspiration to increase areas of joint cooperation with the European Union in various fields. Al-Zayani also stressed on the importance of the European Union's active contribution in supporting the efforts of the countries of the region to face various political and security challenges and supporting the endeavours aimed at establishing peace, stability and prosperity for the benefit of the countries and peoples of the region.
For his part, Josep Borrell welcomed the visit of the Minister of Foreign Affairs to the European Union, highlighting the importance of expanding and increasing bilateral cooperation between the two sides.
A statement on the website of the European External Action Service said High Representative Borrell and Foreign Minister Al Zayani signed a Cooperation Arrangement between the European External Action Service (EEAS) and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Bahrain. The Cooperation Arrangement provides an institutional framework for political dialogue and cooperation in areas such as trade, research and innovation, clean energy and renewables. The statement added:
Both sides look forward to holding the first EU-Bahrain Senior Officials Meeting later this year, where possibilities of bilateral cooperation will be further explored, including in support of Bahrain’s economic diversification efforts. The importance of human rights in the bilateral relationship was underlined, the 5th round of the Human Rights Working Group to be held shortly offering another opportunity to engage in this field.
Today’s meeting also provided an opportunity to discuss latest developments in the region. The High Representative and the Foreign Minister welcomed recent breakthroughs on normalisation of relations among GCC members, as well as with Israel and expressed hope that these positive developments would create momentum towards de-escalation, dialogue and confidence-building in the Gulf, and regarding the Middle East Peace Process.
Al-Zayani also met with the President of the European Council, Charles Michel, who expressed his support to enhance cooperation between Bahrain and the European Union. In their meeting, the two sides also discussed several regional developments and various political and security issues. Charles Michel hailed the efforts of Bahrain to increase cooperation and coordinate future visits.