image001The Heads of State or Government and the representatives of the Republic of Armenia, the Republic of Azerbaijan, the Republic of Belarus, Georgia, the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine, the representatives of the European Union and the Heads of State or Government and representatives of its Member States have met in Riga on 21-22 May 2015. The President of the European Parliament and representatives of the Committee of the Regions, the European Economic and Social Committee, the European Investment Bank and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the Conference of Regional and Local Authorities of the Eastern Partnership and the Euronest Parliamentary Assembly were also present at the Summit.
1. The participants of the Riga summit reconfirm the high importance they attach to the Eastern Partnership as a specific dimension of the European Neighbourhood Policy. They reaffirm their shared vision of this strategic and ambitious Partnership as one based on mutual interests and commitments and supporting sustained reform processes in the Eastern European partner countries, States participating in the Eastern Partnership. Summit participants recommit themselves to strengthen democracy, rule of law, human rights and fundamental freedoms, as well as the principles and norms of international law, which are and have been at the heart of this Partnership since it was launched as a common endeavour of the Member States of the European Union and their Eastern European partners. They recall that the Eastern Partnership is founded on shared ownership, responsibility, differentiation and mutual accountability. They underline the importance of the engagement of all society in turning this shared vision into reality.
2. In the framework of the European Neighbourhood Policy and the Eastern Partnership, the Summit participants reaffirm the sovereign right of each partner freely to choose the level of ambition and the goals to which it aspires in its relations with the European Union. It is for the EU and its sovereign partners to decide on how they want to proceed in their relations. The Summit participants underline that strengthening democracy and enabling functioning market economies, improving macroeconomic stability and the business environment, as well as enhancing interconnectivity, mobility and people-to-people contacts open new prospects for cooperation, contributing also to trade, growth and competitiveness. This serves the shared commitment to stability, security and prosperity of the European Union, Eastern European partners and our entire continent.
3. The acts against Ukraine and the events in Georgia since 2014 have shown that the fundamental principles of sovereignty and territorial integrity within internationally recognised borders cannot be taken for granted in the 21st century on the European continent. The EU remains committed in its support to the territorial integrity, independence and sovereignty of all its partners. Full adherence to all the principles and commitments enshrined in the 1975 Helsinki Final Act and 1990 Charter of Paris by all OSCE Participating States, as well as full respect for the principles and provisions of the UN Charter, is critical to our vision of a free, democratic, peaceful and undivided Europe. The participants of the Summit stress that the Eastern Partnership aims at building a common area of shared democracy, prosperity, stability and increased cooperation and is not directed against anyone. In this context, the Summit participants express their willingness to help rebuild trust and confidence on our continent.
4. The Summit participants strongly support all efforts aimed at de-escalation and a political solution based on respect for Ukraine's independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity. They call on all parties to swiftly and fully implement the Minsk Agreements of September 2014 and the package of measures for their implementation of February 2015, supported by the quadrilateral Declaration of Heads of State and Government, and endorsed by UNSC Resolution 2202 of 17 February 2015. They expect all parties to honour their commitments in this framework. They call for the urgent release of all hostages and unlawfully detained persons.
They express their full support for the OSCE and its efforts through the Special Monitoring Mission and the Trilateral Contact Group. They will also continue to support all diplomatic efforts within the Normandy format and appreciate the contribution of Belarus in facilitating negotiations. The Summit participants call upon all parties to fully cooperate with the international investigations and criminal proceedings to hold to account those who are responsible for the downing of MH17. The EU reaffirms its positions taken in the Joint Statement made at the EU-Ukraine Summit on 27 April, including on the illegal annexation of Crimea and Sevastopol. The Summit participants reaffirm their positions in relation to 'UN General Assembly Resolution 68/262 on the territorial integrity of Ukraine'.
5. The Summit participants emphasise the need for the earliest peaceful settlement of the conflicts in the region on the basis of the principles and norms of international law. The resolution of conflicts, building trust and good neighbourly relations are essential to economic and social development and cooperation. The Summit participants welcome the EU's contribution to further promoting stability and confidence building, and underline the need for stronger EU engagement in this regard. They welcome the EU's strengthened role in conflict resolution and confidence building efforts in the framework or in support of existing agreed formats and processes, including through field presence when appropriate. They highlight the importance of advancing the negotiations in the 5+2 format on a comprehensive political settlement of the Transnistrian conflict and welcome intensified Chisinau-Tiraspol dialogue in all formats. They reiterate their full support to the mediation efforts by the co-chairs of the Minsk Group on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, including at the level of Presidents and their statements since 2009.
Recalling the need to fully implement the 12 August 2008 Ceasefire Agreement, Summit participants reiterate their commitment to conflict resolution efforts in Georgia, including through the co-chairmanship of the Geneva International Discussions by the EU Special Representative for the South Caucasus and the crisis in Georgia and the full implementation of the mandate of the EU Monitoring Mission in Georgia. Participants stress the specific role of the OSCE, as an inclusive organisation, in conflict resolution in the region. The Summit participants also agree to intensify cooperation between the EU and Eastern European partners in international fora.
6. Summit participants reaffirm the Eastern Partnership objective to develop strengthened, differentiated relations between the EU and its six sovereign, independent partners. The scope and depth of cooperation are determined by the EU's and partners' ambitions and needs as well as the pace of reforms.
7. Summit participants reconfirm elements and principles embodied in Eastern Partnership Summit Declarations and underline their firm intention to carry forward the commitments taken at previous Summits and in bilateral agreements. Summit participants recognise that democracy, respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms, and the rule of law lie at the heart of political association and economic integration as envisaged in the Association Agreements. They recognise the commitment of the partners concerned to implementing and promoting these values. Summit participants acknowledge the European aspirations and European choice of the partners concerned, as stated in the Association Agreements.
8. Summit participants underline that the Eastern Partnership continues to serve as the inclusive framework for cooperation and dialogue aimed at long-term, comprehensive modernisation reforms. They remain committed to ensuring that the full potential of this partnership is reached, building on achievements to date. The Summit discussions on the strengthening of relations between the EU and its partners will also inform the ongoing review of the European Neighbourhood Policy. The Summit participants encourage all sections of their societies to contribute to this review.
9. The participants of the Summit reviewed and welcomed the significant achievements in the Eastern Partnership since the Vilnius Summit in 2013, notably the signing and provisional application of the Association Agreements (AA) with Georgia, the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine, which constitute a major step in accelerating these partners' political association and economic integration with the EU. The Summit participants stress that implementation of AA/DCFTAs will be a top priority of the EU and the partners concerned for the coming years. It is the key means of achieving sustainable democracy and the deep modernisation of these
partners' economies and societies for which their citizens are calling. Summit participants look forward to the provisional application of the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area (DCFTA) with Ukraine starting on 1 January 2016 and the positive impact its implementation will bring about. Constructive efforts in the trilateral consultations on EU-Ukraine DCFTA implementation, using the existing flexibilities available to the contracting parties within the DCFTA, are important. They welcome the completion of ratification procedures in a majority of EU Member States and call on the remaining Member States to follow suit to enable early and full entry into force of these agreements.