Thursday, December 2, 2010

Quiet Beginnings: The EEAS is Launched

This is possibly big news - but only time will tell. We detailed the EU's "European External Action Service" (EEAS) a few weeks ago
(see here), a group with responsibilities including being sent to border regions in conflict around Europe and sent to areas in "crisis". Speculation includes the possibility that any "peace-keeping forces" in the final Middle East agreement (ultimately forged by the antichrist) could come from this group within the EU.

This group has now officially been launched and we will be watching developments very closely:

Ashton names EU foreign-service priorities at low-key launch event

Relations with the US and China, climate change, poverty eradication, crisis management and counter-terrorism are to be the top priorities of the EU's new diplomatic corps, EU foreign relations chief Catherine Ashton told her stable of 136 ambassadors at a behind-closed-doors meeting in Brussels on Wednesday (1 December).

The speech, given at a regular annual gathering of EU envoys in the European Commission headquarters, doubled up as a low-key launch ceremony for the European External Action Service (EEAS), which formally began life the same day.

The sessions, which began on Wednesday and will last until 5pm Brussels time on Friday, also saw speeches by European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso, European Parliment head Jerzy Buzek and two of Ms Ashton's top managers - French EEAS secretary general Pierre Vimont and Irish EEAS administration chief David O'Sullivan.

Those could all be interesting individuals to keep an eye on. For a prophecy watcher - below are some quotes worth remembering:

Mr Barroso' speech urged the ambassadors to be "more assertive" in "co-shaping" the global agenda.

Mr O'Sullivan's catchphrase was that the EEAS will stamp the union's "footprint" on the world.

"There is a very exciting atmosphere. We feel like we are the builders of the new foreign service of the EU. But we have to manage expectations of what can be achieved," the diplomat added.

One more name that could be worth remembering:

In a related development, Ms Ashton's office on Thursday named 57-year-old Italian crisis management specialist Agostino Miozzo as her right-hand-man in charge of civilian and military crisis-response planning. The post reports directly to Ms Ashton and stands above the still-to-be-named head of the EU's intelligence-sharing bureau, the Joint Situation Centre.

its still very early for this group, and there is no telling how much power they will have. However, anything foreign policy related within the EU is of great interest, and this is THE group who will be making foreign policy decisions and implementation.

Something tells me that we'll be hearing a lot more from this group in the months to come.

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