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15 July 2019 Tensions in the Gulf, Iraq, external aspects of migration and Turkey’s drilling activities, on the agenda of EU Foreign Affairs Council

The last meeting of the EU Foreign Affairs Council, held on 15 July in Brussels, tackled, among other issues, some pressing challenges on the Mediterranean, including the rising tensions in the Gulf and their impact on the JCPOA, which the EU is trying to preserve despite increasing pressure from the US and Iran. Turkey’s illegal drilling activities in Cyprus’ waters were also discussed and prompted the Council to agree on several targeted measures against Ankara. HR/VP Federica Mogherini informed EU Foreign Ministers about her visit to Bagdad on 13-14 July. In its conclusions, the Council “welcomes the improved relations between the Federal Government of Iraq and the Kurdistan Regional Government, and encourages both parties to maintain the dialogue based on the Constitution of Iraq”. Finally, the Ministers addressed external aspects of migration, emphasizing the need to increase financial resources, in particular for the EU Trust Fund for Africa, and the importance of accelerating resettlement procedures for people in need of protection.