EU HIGH REPRESENTATIVE
H.E. JOSEP BORRELL
VISITED THE AHA CENTRE TO DEEPEN RELATIONS BETWEEN THE TWO REGIONS IN DISASTER MANAGEMENT
In the first visit by a VVIP after more than a year of working from home, on 3 June 2021 the AHA Centre had the honour of welcoming High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/Vice-President of the Commission, European Union (EU) H.E. Mr. Josep Borrell.
Arriving at the AHA Centre, Mr. Borrell was welcomed by Executive Director of the AHA Centre Ms. Adelina Kamal, Deputy Executive Director Mr. Arnel Capili, and staff of the AHA Centre. During his visit, Mr. Borrell had the opportunity to see how the AHA Centre’s Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) works during an emergency response. Other important information about the AHA Centre’s responses and activities in disaster management in the ASEAN region was also presented.
Mr. Borrell stated that his visit to the AHA Centre was important and informative as he had the opportunity to listen to the presentation of the valuable work that was done there. “The EU continues to provide capacity building to [the] AHA [Centre] and civil protection and emergency humanitarian assistance when disasters strike,” he said after the visit.
According to him, ASEAN and the EU share the same commitment to rules-based multilateralism. This is one of the reasons why he needed to visit ASEAN in the midst of the current pandemic.
“ASEAN is the nucleus around which inclusive forms of regional cooperation are built. Regional integration is a way to safeguard our respective ‘strategic autonomy’ for both of us,” H.E. Mr. Josep Borrell
stated in his official statement published by the EU website (https://eeas.europa.eu/)
Ms. Adelina stressed the significance of Mr. Borrell’s visit to the AHA Centre. Not only because it was the first VVIP visit hosted by the AHA Centre after more than one year working from home, but also because the EU is one of the biggest supporters of the AHA Centre through the Integrated Programme in Enhancing the Capacity of the AHA Centre and ASEAN Emergency Response Mechanisms (EU SAHA) project. “EU support shaped the AHA Centre in our formative years. We look forward to working with the EU in our transformative years to come,” said Ms. Adelina.
The 45-minute visit was also attended by Ambassador of the EU to ASEAN H.E. Mr. Igor Driesmans; Mr. Gunnar Wiegand, Managing Director for Asia Pacific, European External Action Service (EEAS); Mr. Nereo Penalver Garcia, Cabinet Member of the HRVP, EEAS; and Mr. Fabian Breuer, Senior Communication Advisor to HRVP, EEAS. During the visit, Mr. Borrell also discussed several important issues, including how to strengthen the partnership between the EU and the AHA Centre in disaster management and the humanitarian assistance sector.
Written by : Moch Syifa | Photo Credit : AHA Centre & europa.eu