The European Union Ambassadors in Pakistan are celebrating Europe Day by visiting Pakistani universities to inform students and faculty about the European Union
ISLAMABAD – The EU Ambassadors in Pakistan are celebrating Europe Day by visiting universities across Pakistan to inform students and faculty about the European Union, its bilateral relations with Pakistan as well as the country they are representing. This year, for the first time, Ambassadors and diplomats from EU Member States will give lecture at public as well as private universities in different cities which include Islamabad, Lahore, Karachi, Faisalabad, Peshawar and Charsadda. Haripur, Rawalakot and Quetta are also expected venues.
“Europe Day is an opportunity to take stock of the relationship between the EU and Pakistan. In many respects, the EU and Pakistan are bound together by a shared history and by common goals and shared values. Many Pakistanis have found a home in Europe and are valued members of our societies. We are committed to the pursuit of democracy, economic development and peace. The event ‘EU Ambassadors back to Universities’ will be an excellent opportunity to exchange with the Pakistani youth on the EU, Pakistan and global issues” Ambassador of the European Union to Pakistan, H.E. Jean-François Cautain said on the occasion of Europe Day 2016.
The Ambassadors and diplomats participating in the ‘EU Ambassadors back to Universities’ event include H.E. Dr. Brigitta Blaha, Embassy of the Republic of Austria, Mr Karel Van Hecke, Counsellor, Embassy of Belgium, H. E. Mr Roumen Pirontchev, Embassy of the Republic of Bulgaria, H.E. Mr Jan Füry Ambassador, Embassy of the Czech Republic, Lukáš Musil, First Secretary, Embassy of the Czech Republic, H.E. Mrs Ina Lepel, Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany, Dr Peter Felten, Minister Counsellor, Deputy Head of Mission, Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany, Dr. Dan Tidten, Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germnay, Ms Elena Claudia Di Vito, First Secretary, Head of Economic, Cultural & Press Office, Embassy of Italy, H.E. Mrs Jeannette Seppen, Embassy of the Kingdom of Netherlands, H. E. Mr Piotr Opalinski, Ambassador of the Republic of Poland, Mr Krzysztof Jasiński, Chargé d’Affaires a.i., Embassy of the Republic of Poland, H.E. Dr. João Paulo Marques Sabido Costa, Chargé d’Affaires en Pied, Embassy of Portugal, H.E. Mr Emilian Ion, Embassy of Romania , Islamabad, Sándor Mihálkó, Counselor, Embassy of Hungary, H.E. Mrs. Martine Dorance, the Ambassador of France to Pakistan, H.E. Mr Javier Carbajosa Sánchez, the Ambassador of Spain, Islamabad, H.E. Mr Jean-François Cautain, Ambassador of the European Union to Pakistan, Mr Stefano Gatto, Minister Counsellor and Deputy Head of the EU Delegation, Dr. Amaury Hoste, Mr Giacomo Miserocchi, Mr Michele Rizzi, Mr Bernard Francois and Ms Anne Kofoed from the European Union Delegation.
Europe Day held on 9 May every year celebrates peace and unity in Europe. The date marks the anniversary of the historical ‘Schuman declaration‘ when at a speech in Paris in 1950, Robert Schuman, the then French foreign minister, set out his idea for a new form of political cooperation in Europe, which would make war between Europe’s nations unthinkable.
European Union and Pakistan partnership
The partnership between the European Union and Pakistan dates back to 1974 but the 2004 cooperation agreement paved the way for closer relations. In order to further strengthen EU-Pakistan relations the two sides in 2012 adopted a 5-Year Engagement Plan with the common goal of building a strategic partnership for peace and development rooted in shared values, principles and commitments. The Engagement Plan aims at facilitating cooperation on a wide range of issues, including democracy, human rights, rule of law, socio-economic cooperation, energy, counter terrorism and migration.
Today, the EU and Pakistan are not only partners in trade and GSP+ but also important political and development partners. The EU is a strong supporter of Pakistan’s democratic development, illustrated by successive election observation missions and technical assistance provided to Pakistan’s parliament and to the Election Commission of Pakistan to advance electoral reforms. The EU is also committed to cooperate with Pakistan in its fight against the shared burden of terrorism and extremism. At the same time the EU supports Pakistan’s efforts to improve its human rights record, in particular in areas such as access to justice, freedom of religion or belief and the rights of women and girls.
The EU-Pakistan 5-year engagement plan will come to an end in 2017 and the two sides have initiated discussions about a new framework for cooperation that can guide relations for the future aiming at further strengthening the already strong ties between the peoples of the EU and of Pakistan.
The EU also fully recognises Pakistan’s vital role in promoting peace and stability in the South Asian region and beyond, supporting the Governments declared goals of improving relations with its neighbours.