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Press release from Ministry for Foreign Affairs

EU external democracy action in focus as State Secretary Diana Janse attends report launch in Brussels


State Secretary for International Development Cooperation Diana Janse will be in Brussels on 31 January to participate in a meeting on the EU’s external democracy action. During the conference, the International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (International IDEA), will launch a report commissioned by Sweden ahead of its Presidency of the Council of the EU.

“Defending democracy and the rule of law is one of Sweden’s priorities for its Presidency. At a time of global democratic backsliding and threats from authoritarian states such as Russia, it is of the utmost importance that the EU is a strong actor for democracy – not only internally, but towards the rest of the world,” says State Secretary Janse.

IDEA’s report analyses the EU’s ability to strengthen its external democracy action. It was written in light of the difficult challenges to democracy in recent years, but also against the background that the EU was founded on democratic values, is a strong global voice for democracy and a large donor of international democracy support. In its report, IDEA recommends that the EU give greater prominence to democracy’s positive political and socio-economic outcomes in its democracy promotion efforts. The authors also recommend strengthening efforts to include civil society in the design of EU democracy policy.

“The report can be an important contribution to discussions on how the EU can strengthen its work for democracy in foreign and development policy,” says State Secretary Janse.

Recommendations report and policy brief  - IDEA's webiste

More about the conference

The launch event will take place at the Residence Palace in Brussels. During the conference, Diana Janse will meet representatives from the European External Action Service, the European Commission, the European Parliament and civil society in Brussels. During the conference, representatives from the United States and Zambia will also participate in discussions on how democracies can strengthen their cooperation on democracy issues. Another topic on the agenda is the midterm review of the EU Action Plan on Human Rights and Democracy, which will be carried out during the Swedish Presidency.

Press contact

Karl Opdal
Press Secretary to Minister for International Development Cooperation and Foreign Trade Johan Forssell
Phone (switchboard) +46 8 405 10 00