EaP Summit Declaration ready, but last minute surprises not excluded, Latvian FM says

Aghavni Harutyunyan

Latvian Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkēvičs says the text of the final Declaration of the Eastern Partnership Summit is ready, but added he would not exclude “last minute surprises.”

“My experience form the Riga summit shows that you can always expect a last minute surprise even when the heads of state and government are already in the mood of improvement. We had this interesting experience 2.5 years ago in Riga,” Mr. Rinkēvičs told reporters on the sidelines of the Summit that kicked off in Brussels today.

“According to the information I have just received all unclear issues have been clarified, and I do hope we are not going to have last-minute surprises and the heads of state and government will be able to formally endorse,” he said.

The declaration has not yet been endorsed, he said. “It’s normal that the declaration is being endorsed at the end of the meeting. But I understand that we are on the way of no substantial changes being made any more,” the Foreign Minister added.

Asked about alleged disagreements between Armenia and Azerbaijan regarding certain provisions of the declaration, Edgars Rinkēvičs refrained from commenting on “deliberations” that member states or partner states have. “That’s not a good thing to do,” he said.

“We held the presidency in 2015 and I know how difficult it was to cover some of the points, including territorial integrity issues, frozen conflict issues, but what I have seen is that all outstanding issues are being addressed in the most constructive way,” Minister Rinkēvičs stated.

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