Cyprus committed to continue active support of EU Common Security and Defence Policy

Defence Minister Christophoros Fokaides has conveyed to his EU colleagues Cyprus commitment to continue supporting actively the EUs Common Security and Defence Policy operations.

The Minister outlined his position in his address at a two day EU Defence Ministers meeting, in Valletta, which concluded today, a Defence Ministry press release says.

On the sidelines of the meeting Fokaides met with his German counterpart Ursula von der Leyen and signed an Agreement on the Protection and Exchange of Classified Information. The Cypriot minister invited der Leyen to visit Cyprus.

Addressing the EU meeting, he referred to the EUNAVFORMED SOPHIA operation and spoke of its significant contribution to the effort to save lives.

He reiterated Cyprus continued active commitment to operations of the Common Security and Defence Policy of the EU, noting in particular Cyprus contribution in training the Libyan coast guard, the press release says.

It adds that the Cypriot Minister stressed the importance of a comprehensive EU approach in cooperation with Libyan neighbouring countries and noted that in a closed sea such as the Mediterranean, instability and insecurity can easily spread and affect not just the region in general but the EU as a whole.

He also conveyed to his fellow EU Ministers the concerns expressed to him by Egyptian top officials on the current situation in Libya during a recent visit he paid to Cairo, the press release continues.

Apart from his meeting with his German counterpart, Fokaides also met with British Minister of State for the Ministry of Defence Mike Penning.

The Defence Minister returns to Cyprus on Thursday evening.

Source: Cyprus News Agency