EU calls for cessation of violence in Bahrain
Brussels, February 2, 2014
The European Union (EU) has called for cessation of violence in Bahrain for serious dialogue to get underway.
"Violence, especially the incidents that mar rallies, has to stop," said EU special representative for human rights Stavros Lambrinidis, reported the Gulf Daily News (GDN), our sister publication.
He stressed the EU's firm support for long-term reform and national reconciliation in Bahrain.
This came as he received in Brussels Interior Minister Lieutenant-General Shaikh Rashid bin Abdulla Al Khalifa who reiterated Bahrain's firm resolve to pursue the path of dialogue to reach a consensual solution engaging all parties.
"The royal initiative to continue the National Dialogue reflects the seriousness of His Majesty King Hamad's reform project," Lt-Gen Shaikh Rashid said.
"Dialogue is continuing and has never stopped despite the hesitation of some parties," he added, stressing the ministry's efforts since the beginning of the crisis to create a favourable environment.
Lt-Gen Shaikh Rashid was on his way back from Washington, where he held key talks with senior officials from the US State Department, Congress, Pentagon, Federal Bureau of Investigation and National Security Agency.
Lambrinidis commended the royal initiative, stressing the importance of inclusive dialogue to bolster Bahrain's security and stability. He offered European expertise to help Bahrain in its efforts to promote human rights, pledging support for key institutions. He cited the Interior Ministry's Ombudsman, hailing its independence and pivotal role.
The two sides discussed the importance of co-ordination and communication.
The minister also held talks with Pierre Vimont, executive secretary-general of the European External Action Service and deputy of high representative of the EU for foreign affairs and security policy Catherine Ashton. Vimont stressed the importance of bolstering ties and welcomed the royal initiative to resume talks. - TradeArabia News Service