Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Didier Reynders is shocked by the terrorist attack of yesterday evening in Manchester. His thoughts are with the victims and with their families and friends. He offered his deepest condolences to his British colleague Boris Johnson. Belgium sympathizes with the British people.
Today, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Development Cooperation Alexander De Croo has made a plea for a better humanitarian funding. The Council also consulted with Amina Mohammed, Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations, on the reform of the UN System and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Prior to the Council, minister De Croo had a talk on Digital for Development with Sven Mikser, Minister for Foreign Affairs in Estonia.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Development Cooperation Alexander De Croo has met today with Julia Gillard, former Prime Minister of Australia and current chairwoman of the Global Partnership for Education (GPE). The next four years, Belgium will release 26 million euros for the GPE, a multilateral mechanism that focusses on access to primary and secondary education.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Didier Reynders is satisfied with the new Belgian Civilian Crisis Management Strategy approved by the cabinet this morning. The strategy describes Belgium's vision, priorities and ambitions related to civilian crisis management. Our country uses civilian crisis management to contribute to the efforts of the international community in preventing or dealing with foreign crises by means of non-military actions.
On Wednesday 17 May, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Didier Reynders met the ambassadors of the Arab countries accredited in Brussels. The main focus of the meeting was the situation in the Middle East Peace Process. It also allowed an exchange of views on the regional situation as a whole.
May 17 is the International Day against Homophobia and Transfobia (IDAHOT). Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Didier Reynders underlines that the fight against discrimination and respect for human rights of LGBTI persons remains a priority in Belgium’s foreign policy.
Transfer costs on the remittance of money to developing countries must be lower. Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Development Cooperation Alexander De Croo said this in reaction to the 11.11.11 and HIVA research into Belgian money remittances to developing countries. The research shows that the average transfer price of remittances from Belgium fluctuates at around 8%.
In its annual report 2016, published today, the Belgian Development Cooperation highlights some new accents of the Belgian development policy, a whole range of results and activities as well as the distribution of budgetary resources. Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Development Cooperation Alexander De Croo emphasizes the renewal of our international development policy. A renewal that he wants to pursue in the next few years, including in the field of digitalisation, the link between the private sector and the development world, and our humanitarian efforts.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Development Cooperation Alexand De Croo is worried about three recent cases of Ebola in the province of Bas-Uélé, a remote area in the Northeast of the Democratic Republic of Congo. Our country closely follows the situation.