First Minister and Minister for Europe, External Affairs and Culture in Brussels
The First Minister, Alex Salmond, and Linda Fabiani, Minister for Europe, External Affairs and Culture, arrived in Brussels on 11 July and that evening hosted a reception in Scotland House for Scots in Brussels and key people working in the EU institutions, permanent representations and business community.
The next day the First Minister held meetings with four senior European Commissioners with resposibilities for Fisheries, Trade, Budget and the Internal Market, laying the groundwork for strengthening Scotland's role in Europe.
The First Minister also attended the commemoration service to mark the 90th Anniversary of the Battle of Passchendaele. Afterwards he laid a wreath at the Menin Gate, Ypres. He said: "No family in Scotland was untouched and no community unaffected by the loss of so many young soldiers who died in 1917. The carnage of Passchendaele is a poignant reminder of why the European institutions were established, to build lasting peace and prosperity in our continent."
The Minister for Europe, External Affairs and Culture attended a dinner that evening hosted for her by Geert Bourgeois, Flemish Minister for Administrative Affairs, Foreign Policy, Media and Tourism.