10 SEP 2010
By Andrew Rettman
EUOBSERVER / BRUSSELS - EU foreign ministers meeting in Brussels on Friday and Saturday (10 and 11 September) are likely to discuss the carve up of senior posts in the EU's diplomatic corps and the Middle East peace process, on top of the main agenda.
The informal or so-called Gymnich event, which is to take place in the Belgian foreign ministry's Egmont Palace building, has on its primary agenda the prospect of launching a strategic partnership with China and the idea of reducing EU trade tariffs for Pakistani goods to help the country following disastrous floods.
But with EU foreign relations chief Catherine Ashton expected to name her first tranche of senior personnel in the European External Action Service in the coming days, EU diplomats foresee an outbreak of bilateral meetings between Ms Ashton and member states as capitals lobby for their candidates.
Belgian foreign minister Steven Vanackere is planning to stir debate by distributing a study by the Polish Institute for Foreign Relations about the unequal distribution of senior jobs in the current EU foreign relations set-up.
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