The Egmont Palace illuminated in the rainbow colors for IDAHOT

In 2004, May 17th was declared International Day against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia (IDAHOT). In honor of this day, the Egmont Palace in Brussels will be illuminated in the colors of the rainbow flag from Sunday, May 16 to Tuesday, May 18. “This is a first for the Egmont Palace and our way of showing our commitment, with the Belgian foreign policy, to diversity and equality for all, without discrimination on the basis of gender, sexual identity or sexual orientation. This…


Foreign Affairs Council of the European Union of 10 May: conclusions

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs, Sophie Wilmès, attended the Foreign Affairs Council (FAC) in Brussels on Monday 10 May. The European ministers discussed in detail the situation in the Western Balkans and the state of transatlantic relations, before holding a videoconference meeting with the Special Presidential Envoy for Climate, John Kerry. The Deputy Prime Minister also took advantage of the Council meeting to report to her counterparts on the Benelux mission to…


The Benelux countries met with the Baltic States in the margins of the European Foreign Affairs Council

On Monday 10 May, the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign and European Affairs, Sophie Wilmès, organised a working meeting between the Ministers for Foreign Affairs of the Benelux countries and the Baltic States (Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania) in the context of Belgium’s Presidency of Benelux, and in the margins of the Foreign Affairs Council (FAC), which was held that day. The Benelux and Baltic countries have been engaged in this type of dialogue and consultation since 2007.…


Sophie Wilmès presents Belgium's human rights policy

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Sophie Wilmès will represent Belgium today at the Universal Periodic Review of the Human Rights Council. She will speak on behalf of the Federal State and the federated entities. Belgium’s human rights policy will be reviewed for the third time since 2011. The UPR provides for a regular evaluation of the human rights situations of all 193 UN member states. Every year, three UPR sessions take place, each time covering 14 countries.…


European Affairs Council of the European Union of 20 April: conclusions

On Tuesday 20 April, the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for European Affairs, Sophie Wilmès, held a videoconference with her European counterparts within the framework of the General Affairs Council (GAC). The ministers focused mainly on European coordination in relation to COVID-19, the rule of law situation in five Member States and the Conference on the Future of Europe. COVID-19 According to the European Centre for Disease Control (ECDC), the situation remains worrying despite the fact…


Council of the European Foreign Affairs Ministers of 19 April: conclusions

During their videoconference meeting on Monday 19 April, the EU Foreign Ministers discussed in detail the situation in Ethiopia and that in Ukraine, with an informal exchange of views with the Ukrainian Foreign Minister, Dmytro Kuleba. During the review of current European foreign policy issues, the ministers focused on China, Iran and Russia. Additional sanctions have been adopted against two companies and ten individuals in Myanmar. Ukraine EU Foreign Ministers noted that, seven years after…


Sophie Wilmès speaks with Gabrielius Landsbergis, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania

On Thursday 1 April, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Sophie Wilmès spoke with her counterpart Gabrielius Landsbergis, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania. The two ministers reviewed the bilateral and regional cooperation, including between the Benelux countries and the Baltic States, of which they each hold the Presidency. They welcomed the upcoming State Visit of King Philippe to Lithuania. Finally, the two ministers discussed several international issues on the…


Belgium announces €18 million in humanitarian aid for Syria

On the occasion of the fifth Brussels Conference on Syria (‘Supporting the Future of Syria and the Region’), Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Sophie Wilmès and Minister of Development Cooperation Meryame Kitir announced today 18 million euro in additional humanitarian aid for the Syrian people. They stressed that a permanent solution to the conflict is only possible if all parties involved take…


Sophie Wilmès chairs the ministerial meeting of the International Coalition against Daesh

On March 30, 2021, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Sophie Wilmès co-chaired with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken a virtual ministerial meeting of the International Coalition to defeat Daesh. This meeting in restricted format brings together the 32 States and international organizations most involved in its action. Today’s ministerial meeting demonstrated the unity and solidarity of the Coalition and the continued commitment of its members as expressed in the…


Sophie Wilmès meets her American counterpart Antony J. Blinken

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Sophie Wilmès received her American counterpart Antony Blinken at the Egmont Palace today for a first bilateral meeting. Both ministers participated in the NATO ministerial for the past two days. It is Secretary Blinken’s first visit to Europe since the Biden administration took office. The meeting took place in a cordial atmosphere and allowed to set out some lines for concrete transatlantic cooperation. President Biden already…