27th Jun 2022

Finland slams EU foreign policy leaks

Finnish foreign minister Erkki Tuomioja, whose country holds the rotating EU presidency since 1 July, has accused member states of leaking important foreign policy documents to countries outside the EU, including Israel.

"For a long time it has been known that, within an hour after being distributed to the member states, all EU documents concerning the Middle East have already reached Tel Aviv, and probably Washington and Moscow," Mr Tuomioja wrote in a comment in Hufvudstadsbladet, the biggest Swedish language daily in Finland.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Become an expert on Europe

Get instant access to all articles — and 20 years of archives. 14-day free trial.

... or subscribe as a group

"The problem with the EU foreign policy is not the lack of openness, but its false transparency" reads the exceptionally outspoken piece titled: "False transparency".

He went on to write that the leaks have a negative effect on the EU's foreign policy capabilities and encourage member states to act outside the EU's formal decision-making structure.

"This is problematic for the Union as a whole, but particularly harmful to the smaller member states", he wrote.

The very first weeks of the Finnish EU presidency have been extraordinarily busy for Mr Tuomioja with the crisis in Libanon exploding just days after he took over responsibility for the bloc's foreign policy.

In the article, Mr Tuomioja lambasted EU ministers for acting in their national interests and for preparing for EU summits as if they were "entering difficult negotiations with potentially hostile countries."

He also criticised EU officials for giving comments to media prematurely and for giving "highly coloured and nationally conflicting accounts of how the decisions were reached, which many ministers often have a hard time recognizing as descriptions of the meetings they attended."

"It would do wonders to the EU's morale, credibility and effectiveness if ministers were to come to EU meetings with a sense of common purpose and not primarily to collect domestic credits as defined by their national press," he wrote.

EU opens door to Ukraine in 'geopolitical' summit

EU leaders will also discuss eurozone issues with European Central Bank president Christine Lagarde, as more and more leaders are worried about voters' distress at soaring inflation.

EU parliament revokes Russian lobbyist badges

After months of stalled negotiations to remove Russian lobbyists from the EU's joint-transparency register, the European Parliament has decided to go solo and unilaterally bar them from its premises.

News in Brief

  1. Poles and Ukrainians hold gay pride march in Warsaw
  2. Possible terror attack halts gay pride in Norway
  3. Belgian PM: Gas shortage requires joint response
  4. Bulgarian MPs set conditions for lifting enlargement veto
  5. Latvia: We need a brigade-size Nato force to 'feel safe'
  6. Deal reached on controversial energy treaty reform
  7. EU carbon emissions from energy up 6% in 2021
  8. Germany step closer to gas rationing

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Nordic Council of MinistersEmerging journalists from the Nordics and Canada report the facts of the climate crisis
  2. Council of the EUEU: new rules on corporate sustainability reporting
  3. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic ministers for culture: Protect Ukraine’s cultural heritage!
  4. Reuters InstituteDigital News Report 2022
  5. EFBWW – EFBH – FETBBHow price increases affect construction workers
  6. Nordic Council of MinistersNew Nordic think tank examines influence of tech giants

Latest News

  1. EU summit's uncertainty in the face of economic war
  2. Next winter's gas looms large at EU summer summit
  3. Ukraine becomes EU candidate after 120 days of war
  4. How to enhance EU cybersecurity
  5. Competing options for EU enlargement
  6. MEPs demand to exit 'ecocide treaty' after reforms 'fail'
  7. Finland optimistic in Turkey talks over Nato
  8. Hungary's global-tax veto seen as 'blackmail'

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us