Before the official programme for the G7 Foreign Ministers Meeting in Lübeck got under way on Tuesday afternoon (14 April), there was a special warm up: a discussion with young people about foreign policy.
It’s not only Foreign Ministers who are discussing global policy in Lübeck just now: around 120 young people accepted an invitation from the Federal Foreign Office and the Willy Brandt House in Lübeck to kick things off with a Q&A session involving Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier and EU High Representative Federica Mogherini.
How are the negotiations in the Ukraine conflict going? What strategies does the international community have in the fight against Ebola? What should be done about the Greek financial crisis? And – can you be happy as the EU High Representative?
Lübeck G7 warm up ‑ We are discussing foreign policy
Most of the young people taking part in the discussion were school pupils from Lübeck and exchange students from, for instance, Belgium, China, the United States, Sweden, Ecuador and Ukraine. But there were also some trainees active in their trade unions and youth ambassadors from the “One” programme actively committed to Africa.
Questions could also be put to the Foreign Minister and the High Representative in advance via Twitter using the hashtag #G7WarmUp.
Visit to the Willy Brandt House
Before the discussion, Steinmeier and Mogherini took the opportunity to visit the permanent exhibition in the nearby Willy Brandt House with some local school pupils as their guides. The pupils are studying the political work of the former Federal Chancellor and Foreign Minister, who was born in Lübeck.
The exhibition includes Brandt’s Nobel Peace Prize citation from 1974.
In the early evening, after the panel discussion with the young people, Steinmeier and Mogherini met up with their counterparts from the G7 states. The official opening ceremony for the G7 meeting took place in Lübeck’s historic City Hall.