On 7–8 November in Washington, D.C., Political Directors of foreign services from the Baltic States, the Nordic countries and the United States of America gathered for their annual e-PINE (Enhanced Partnership in Northern Europe) meeting to discuss transatlantic security, relationship with Russia, China and Turkey, and developments in the Arctic. Latvia was represented at the meeting by the Foreign Ministry’s Political Director and Under Secretary of State, Jānis Mažeiks.
Jānis Mažeiks pointed out that the European Union (EU) and the United States of America should continue cooperating closely, strengthening multilateralism and framing a common policy in relation to Russia and China. European countries and the USA should work together in response to challenges such as hybrid threats and non-compliance with the international legal framework in the field of non-proliferation.
The participants were in agreement about the need for continued cooperation between the USA and Europe on security policy and building defence capabilities. The role of the NATO alliance was underlined in the strengthening of transatlantic security and it was pointed out that a united and strong Alliance is and will remain the major stabilising factor in the Euro-Atlantic space.
Discussing Russia, Jānis Mažeiks stressed that it was important for the European Union and the United States to maintain their common strong stance in relation to Russia, given that Russia’s policy in Ukraine and Russia’s policy concerning the fulfilment of the Minsk agreements remain unchanged.
As part of his stay in the USA, Jānis Mažeiks also met with officials from the Department of State and the National Security Council and experts from think tanks.
The e-PINE initiative was launched in 2003 with the purpose of enhancing U.S. cooperation with the Baltic and Nordic region. The main fields of cooperation within the e-PINE format are security policy, neighbourhood policy and development of economic relations.