The European Union has nearly agreed an update of its internal rules for naming special representatives, envoys and co-ordinators - such as Bodo Hombach for the Stability Pact for South-Eastern Europe. Under the draft currently being discussed by EU Member States' Ambassadors, special representatives will now sign a contract with the Council of Ministers rather than with the Commission, and the Council will pay their salaries and travel expenses. Operational expenditure will, however, remain under the budgetary heading of Commission spending on Common Foreign and Security Policy.The Political Committee will help assess applicants when the EU launches a candidature for a representative, but the decision on nomination and mandate will be made by the Council as a Joint Action. The Presidency, under the authority of the Council, and assisted by the Secretary-General/High Representative, will ensure coherence between...

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