EU Mediterranean leaders sign climate change declaration
9 European countries agree to work together to tackle global environmental crisis in Athens Summit
Nine European countries bordering the Mediterranean meeting in Athens on Friday agreed on global action against climate change and to preserve the natural environment of the Mediterranean.
Referring to the fires that hit several South Mediterranean countries, Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis told the EUMed9 summit: "This summer's catastrophic fires did not leave any Mediterranean country unscathed, while northern countries were hit by deadly floods."
He added that Greece and its allies are working on building a stronger civil protection mechanism as well as protecting the forest and seas.
In a declaration issued at the end of the meeting, the nine countries' leaders committed to implementation of the Paris Agreement to work to rein in climate change.
The leaders also discussed the recent crisis in Afghanistan and migration issues. Mitsotakis said: "We will not allow the recurrence of the phenomenon of uncontrolled migration flows that we experienced in 2015."
The participants also adopted a joint declaration on issues of political and humanitarian significance, referring to peace, security, and stability in the Mediterranean as a strategic priority of the EU.
They also discussed Syria, Lebanon, Libya, and Afghanistan, and joint efforts to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic, among other issues.
The summit brought together the leaders of Spain, France, Italy, Malta, Greece, Greek Cyprus, Slovenia, and Croatia, as well as the Portuguese foreign minister and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen.
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Climate Studies & recent events show: the Mediterranean region is at risk.— Ursula von der Leyen (@vonderleyen) September 17, 2021
We are reinforcing EU civil protection, helping in reconstruction & investing: #NextGenerationEU
At #EUMED9 I stressed: together & with #EUGreenDeal we can make the region a leader in climate solutions. pic.twitter.com/3m1ieEBxlQ