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Home arrow newsitems arrow EUParliament Vote on Ombudsman backs EF project Key parts (1997-2019, incl. Historic Buzek 2009 act)

EUParliament Vote on Ombudsman backs EF project Key parts (1997-2019, incl. Historic Buzek 2009 act)

Written by ACM
Thursday, 17 January 2019

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*Strasbourg/EU Parliament/Angelo Marcopolo/- A strong Majority in EU Parliament's plenary backed a Key part of "Eurofora" project's (+1997-2019) Principles about Citizens' Participation, on which is based the Latest EU Ombudsman's, Emily O'Reilly's, Special Report (2017-2019), including an Historic move on Transparency of the Decision-Making process made by former President Buzek, just after -and according to- what we had discussed here, already as early as before a Decade now : since 2009 !

 

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Significantly, the overall EU Parliament's Resolution succesfully attracted 479 Votes in favor, against Only 18, (with 81 abstentions).

 

 

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On the Contrary, 225 MEPs (against 360 in favor) Contested (191 opposed + 34 abstaining) just a Part of a Paragraph, which Applied such General Principles also to a Specific, Controversial Issue, relevant to EU Member States' sovereignity, (about "Preparatory Bodies" linked to "€uroGroup" and other "Financial" organs), and/or to EU Council's rejected Demand for a 1,5 Month more Timeframe in order to Reply in what it considered as "Complex" Issues, requiring "in Depth Reflection", (until "Early July" 2018), that EU Ombudsman Refused, because it Exceeded the Standard 3 Months overall Deadline set by EU Parliament's Rules, while the matter was "Important ... to EU Citizens", as she stressed (on May 2018). 

 

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- But, concerning the above-mentioned General Principles, on which is Based both "Eurofora"s Project (+1997-2019) and this EU Parliament's 2019 Resolution on EU Ombudsman's latest Report (2017-2019), a Strong Majority of MEPs (Comp. Supra) stressed Today, in particular, that  "ensuring that (EU) Citizens are able to ... Participate in the Progress of Legislation is a Legal Requirement under the (EU) Treaties (See Infra), and a Basic requirement for a Modern Democracy".


- In this regard, MEPs point at the "Articles 1 and 10 (3) of EU Treaty, (which) establish that, at Union level, Decisions must be taken as Openly as possible, and as Close as possible to the (EU) Citizens".


+ In Addition, Lisbon Treaty's Article 11 speaks even for "Regular Dialogue", as well as the "Expression" of EU Citizens' Views, and "Exchanges", on the "Acts" of EU Authorities, including EU Parliament itself, EU Commission or Council, and others, as "Eurofora" has recently evoked both with EU Ombudsman, Emily O'Reilly herself, and her Director of Communication, etc, (See: http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/euombudsmanoneurofforaproject.html + http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/euombudsmandecisionandeuroforaproject.html , respectively).


=> That's one reason more, for which EU Ombudsman's latest Report "found that", as a matter of Principle, "the ... Lack of Transparency ...of (a) Decision-Making Process - specifically during the Preparatory Stage ...- constitute(s) Mal-Administration", MEPs pointed out.


I.e. practically endorsing, on 2019, former Twice EU Ombudsman, Professor Nikiforos Diamandouros' 2010 Anouncement to "Eurofora" of his Intention to use EU's "Charter of Fundamental Rights and Freedoms", (part of Lisbon Treaty package), and particularly the Principle of "Good Administration", (established by the Charters' Article 41), in a "Wide" way, including, in Addition to "Transparency" Issues, also f.ex. the Legal Principles of "Impartiality" and "Fairness", as well as of  "reasonably Timely" Public Administration's Decisions, added to Citizens' Rights to "be Heard", have "Access to ...Files" affecting their "affairs", as well as for a Motivation giving the "Reasons" of Decisions. With the Result to form a Coherent Series of Rules inciting for a kind of <<Dialogue>> between Citizens and Public Authorities, (since the "Reasons" of their Decisions should, normally, Reply to affected Citizens' previous "Hearing", as National Administrative Law often precsribes also in several EU Countries, etc), serving also as a Safeguard against eventual "Abuse of Discretionary Power", (See: http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/euombudsman.html), which are becoming, Taken Together also with PanEuroepan CoE's recent similar Legal Tools for  National Administration, (See : http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/coeruleoflawchecklistandeuroforaproject.html), Key Building Blocks applying"Eurofora"s Project's main Idea.


>>> Now, "especially in the run-up to the European Elections in May 2019", EU Parliament "is deeply convinced that Truly Democratic and highly Transparent Decision-Making ... is indispensable to increase Citizens' Trust, ...and is, therefore, determined to Enhance the Democratic Accountability of all EU Institutions", as the new Resolution stresses.


- Otherwise, nowadays' "common Criticism", "of the EU" (and/or National States) as being "Democratically Deficient", can become "Detrimental" to any "Ambitious ... European (and/or National) Project", EU Parliament warns, expressing "Deep Concern".


=> Therefore, the Resolution adopted Today, formally "Demands" that EU Institutions, including the Council, "Align (their) Working Methods with the Standards of a ... Participatory Democracy, as required under the Treaties", (Comp. Supra).


- During Today's Debates, Dutch former Minister and currently vice-President of EU Parliament's Delegation to Palestine,, "Green" MEP Margrete Auken, rightfully pointed at the fact that "We are here with the very Core of what is called the <<Democratic Deficit>> in the EU", which appears as "a kind of Ghost (sic !) story", that "is too Far Away"...


- She referred to an expression used by experienced EU Parliament's co-Rapporteur for Ombudsman's work, German SD MEP Jo Leinen, who had just Warned that "Citizens" have important "Expectations" on "the whole Decicion-Making Process" of Public Authorities, and what "they expect at Home, inside the Nation States, they expect it, all the More, from the EU, because, (otherwise), Brussels is bound to be (perceived as) More and More Away from the People ! That is why we need (f.ex.) More Transparency at the European level, than perhaps at National level" : Here, the Decision Making Process must Not look as "a Black-Box", where "Much is happening Behind Closed Doors", he Warned.


- But, both EU Ombudsman's and EU Parliament's relevant Reports clearly show that "we have some very Good Tools" in order "to Deal with that Problem", optimistically stressed MEP Auken. A key part of "the Problem is", in fact, that various Obstacles to Transparency and/or Participation in EU Decision-Making Process "have Kept entire important National Layers Out of (the European) Democracy", as she characteristically Denounced, instead of inter-Linking them, (f.ex. via Citizens', Medias', and/or Political Parties' Access to what is happening at EU Level, so that they could Act also through the National Level, by Holding their Representatives Accountable of what they are doing here).


=> It's Interesting to note that the Most Important such "Tool", in order to Find a Solution to those Problems, according to Both relevant EU Ombudsman's Report and EU Parliament's Resolution of 2019, (Comp. Supra), Focus mainly on "Transparency" at the "Preparatory Stage" of EU's Decision-Making Process, i.e. for Information of Citizens a.o. Before Measures are taken, f.ex. by Opening Access to what is happening inside EU Parliament's Committees which Prepare the Final Decisions due to be taken, Sooner or Later, by the Plenary.


>>> That's precisely a Key Point of "Eurofora"s wider Project (+1997-2019), with which We have Helped to Deal, in real Practice, by Inciting the former President of EU Parliament, ex-Prime Minister of Poland, Professor Jerzy Buzek, (current Chair of Industry-Transports-Research-Energy Committee), to be Insprired by a Discussion that we held, the same Day of his Election as EU Parliament's Head, as Early as since 2009, in order to take the Historic Decision to "Innovate" then, by Starting to Open all the MEPS' Committees' Meetings' Events and Documents for "Live" Transmission, Registration and Permanent Access through the New Communication Technologies of Digital Tools and the Internet, already before a Decade (2009 - 2019) !


- The Crystal-Clear and Locacious Dialogue between "Eurofora" and President Buzek, in an Exclusive Interview that we had the chance to take then, just after his Election and Press Conference, in EU Parliament in Strasbourg, back on July 2009, speaks itself about the Importance of that Exceptionaly Important Event, which obviously Triggered the Web-Transmission and Publication of EU Parliament Committees' Events and Documents, for the 1st Time in History, systematically, until now (2009-2019) : See the Original NewsReport at  http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/irish/buzekeurofora.html.


- It also Reveals the Fact that, by doing so, President Buzek was initially Motivated mainly by "Eurofora" Project's central Idea to Help Debates between EU Citizens and MEPs Before Decisions which affect their Lives and/or Society at large, i.e. a kind of "Dialogue" with concerned Citizens in the EU Decision-Making Process, by using Modern Communication Technologies.


+ In consequence, Nowadays, since this 1st Part of "Eurofora"s Project has been almost Realized in Practice, (i.e. as far as Prior Information and Transparency Before Decisions is concerned, mainly in EU Parliament, mostly in EU Commission, and at a Lesser degree, Partly even in EU Council, where it seems on its way, mutatis-mutandis : Comp. Supra), then, from now on, the main Focus should, normally, be placed on the 2nd -and Most Important- Part of our Idea of +1997-2019, which notoriously was from the Start, and still is Today, to Help Develop Citizens' Debates and Dialogue with EU Politicians/Deciders Before they take impotant Measures affecting People's Lives and/or Society.


As also various converging Recent Events clearly indicate, (f.ex. in France and several Other European Countries, as well as at an overall EU Level), a Complete Application of that "Eurofora"s main Project (+1997-2019) - i.e. Also of its 2nd (and Crucial) Pilar - could Help Face, Alleviate and/or Solve most of current notorious Problems faced by the EU in its relation to Citizens, while also contributing to Open some New Horizons for a really Modern, Developed, Popular and more Democratic Europe.


 

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Benedict's "Source" to revitalize Europe : - "The World needs Hope", Pope says, calling to relaunch E.U. via Human Rights !

Paris - Lourdes - Strasbourg : 12 - 17 September 2008.

The vital need to re-launch Europe can be succesfully met by defending fundamental Human Rights of the People, said Pope Benedict XVI in his 1st speech in France, at his meeting with President Nicolas Sarkozy, who currently chairs the EU.

Sarkozy replied by welcoming Christian and other religions' contribution to indispensable Public Debates on crucial issues which affect Human Dignity, Europe, even Humankind, as BioGenetics.

- "When Europeans will see and personally experience that the inalienable Rights of the Human Person .., those of their free Education, their Family life, their Work, ..their Religious Rights, ..are respected and promoted, then, these Europeans will fully understand the greatness of the European construction and will be actively involved in it", Benedict XVI stressed.

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- "It's important that during France's EU Presidency, there is, indeed, a desire for the Church to contribute to protect Human Person's integrity, and I think that there is also a growing Conscience, beyond any polemics, to defend Human Rights, and, thus, contribute to ensure respect for Human Dignity", added to "EuroFora" the Pope's Spokesman, Vatican's Press Director Federico Lombardi.

- "Nobody really told us here that Lisbon Treaty was good for this or that reason to the People. They only told us that we "had" to ratify it, and tried to scare us, but failed", said 2 Irish pilgrims to "EuroFora", after 2 Majority Abstentions in 1999 and 2004 EU Elections and 3 "NO" to Referenda in France and the Netherlands in 2005, followed by the Irish "No" in 2008, during a Decade of EU Crisis since the controversial Turkey EU- bid (1999-2008).

More than .."224 cases of Murders, Torture, "Disappearancies" or Destructions" by "agents of Turkish Security forces", where all those responsible for so heavy Crimes still remain scandalously unpunished, despite regular condemnations of Ankara by Strasbourg''s European Court of Human Rights from 1996 to 2008, were examined the same week by CoE's Ministers, who decided to launch a fresh call "urging" the Turkish Authorities to end this dangerous "virtual Impunity" of criminals, without comparison to European countries.

- "Why not Ukraine, instead of Turkey ?", asked EuroFora a Journalist from "Kiev : the city where it's enough to cross the streets in order to realize that it's a European town", as Sarkozy recently said, before solemnly declaring this week, together with Ukranian President Jushenko and EU Commission's chair Baroso, EU's "recognition that Ukraine is a fully European Country, linked to Europe by culture and History".

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Europe's "Christian roots" and Values, with "openess and mutual respect" to other cultures and beliefs, were highlighted by Sarkozy in harmony with Benedict XVI.

The Human person should be protected "from his inception until his natural death", added the Pope, faithful to BioEthic principles defended by his predecessor and collaborator, John Paul II, of topical importance in France, Europe and the World today, as Sarkozy announced :

- "Fast and important progres in Genetic Science and procreation raise delicate BioEthical Questions to our Democracies", which "involve our view of Humans and Life, and can lead to Social Mutations. That's why they cannot remain only a business of experts", hestressed.

- "It's Politician's responsibility to set a proper framework for such Public Debates", as "France will do on BioEthics in 2009". "Religious and Philosophic traditions must take part, with their ideas and centuries' long experience : A positive Laicity is an open invitation to Dialogue", he said.

- "France engaged in Europe at another Debate on how to make Financial Capitalism more moral", and the "Social doctrine of the Church fits well what is at stake in modern Globalized Economy"

- "But, a "Real Dialogue is not for an elite of a Globalized world : It penetrates deep into the People : That's why Churches should actively participate : .. It's bringing New Oxygen to Public Debates", stressed Sarkozy.

- "Democracy must not be cut off Reason", which is "compatible with Faith", thanks to "the meeting between Christianism and Greek philosophy ", he added, referring to Pope's views. "It means to advance with logic arguments, search what's best and respect common principles of thinking :... It's an everyday need for Public Administration and the Political Debate", he added.
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Pope Benedict's 1st visit to France looked like the start of a brillant, manifold demonstration that this was well-founded and could become true in the lives of the People : After its Theoretical foundations unfolded at a "speech to the world of Culture", inaugurating Bernadins' cultural centre, and its dogmatic instrument shaped at an address to the Clergy in the Historic Notre Dame' Cathedral, he started to resolutely reach out to the People :

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The move went upwards like Bach's music : Begining with a call to more than fifteen thousand enthousiastic Youngsters gathered at Notre Dame's parvis with overnight celebrations, it gained strength in an impressive open-air Mass at Paris'central Invalides'area facing Alexander III's bridge, attended by more than 150.000 people, French Prime Minister Fillon, many Ministers, Foreign Ambassadors, etc, and culminated in a series of pan-European Mega-meetings at Lourdes 150th anniversary, together with all French Bishops, EU Commission's vice-Chairman Barrot, and some 200.000 enthousiastic People from all over Europe and beyond : After a Sea of Lights astonishingly braved Saturday Night's rain, an open-air mass at riverside fields among Pyrenees' Mountains Sunday Morning, was followed on Monday by a Sea of "Compassion" to those facing Health or Life threats, surrounded by an endless gathering of People, whose gigantic dimensions obviously surprised the organisers..

Meanwhile, Benedict had the occasion to speak to the French Priests at Notre Dame of Paris, and with the Bishops at Lourdes, where they prepare a crucial November plenary meeting, due to take important decisions on imminent EU debates and choices about Europe's identity, BioEthics, etc.
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- "A new way of thinking about Laicity has become necessary", agreed the Pope with President Sarkozy at Elysee. While keeping the "distinction between Politics and Religion, to guarantee Citizens' Liberty", "religion is important for shaping Consciousness and contributing, together with others, to create a basic Ethical Consensus in society".

- "Searching Essential realities", (as "God" for christians), needs "Speech : "Logos" in greek, i.e. Reason", "able to shape a Community","with creative work transforming Human History". But "Dialogue" is instrumental for "Reason", because it's the way to "search" for Truth", in "Liberty", according to Greek Platonic Philosophy, with Socrates' dialectics. "Reason" implies "Spirit and Liberty", hence the polyphonic "Music" of "Dialogue", in a responsible, "well balanced" way, to avoid "destruction".

Starting with a "Dialogue between christians and intellectual or artistic movements" highlighted at Bernardins' Cultural Center. with former Presidents Chirac and Giscard d'Estain, UNESCO's chair Anastassopoulos, etc., as well as representatives of Muslim Communities, (including a separate Turkish), after contacts with Jews at Vatican's Embassy, the Pope turned towards the People :

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To French Priests : "Church built on the rock" !
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- Speaking to thousands of French Priests at Notre Dame's Cathedral, Benedict highlighted a solid "Church built on the Rock" of conscious and active persons, transmitting "a lively, energetic and sharp" "God's Speech, actively working on Human History".

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"Praying together" with "representatives of Christian Churches and ecclesiastic communities", (as Orthodoxes, Armenians, Protestants, etc), he called "to reinforce the Unity of the church", against "any form of Division", around Holy Spirit', "the Word","Christ's Justice", and "Love" to fellow- humans : Essentials which "resume all holy scripts", as he said.

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To Young People : "New Horizons"
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To some 15.000 enthousiastic Young People at Notre Dame's parvis, along Seine's river, Benedict spoke about "the Energy of the Holy Spirit" and "the Mystery of the Cross" : - "The Holy Spirit opens New Horizons to Human Intelligence .. and makes it conscious of the real greatness of Christ's sacrifice, dying and resurecting for World's life".

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Some "may slander you as crazy, laugh at you, or even persecute you. But, "the Holy Cross is a symbol of God's love", and "givesmoral strength" : "Witness of People's pains, it's at the same time, a precious, unique expression of their Hopes", he told them at Paris' dawn.

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Invalides' plateau : "People chosen to become God's friends"
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At the 1st open-air Mass in Paris' center area of Invalides, facing the Grand Palais, along the river Seine, during an impressive gathering of more than 150.000, French Prime Minister Fillon, Ministers Alliot-Marie, Bachelot, Dati, Jouyet, Assembly's President Accoyer, Senate's Chair Poncelet, former 1st Lady Bernadette Chirac, former Prime Minister Raffarin, many foreign Ambassadors, and other political personalities were present. (While earlier, from the Socialist opposition, Paris' Mayor Delanoye, artist Robert Hussein a.o. assisted at the Elysee meeting).

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But the "Entry Song" focused on the "People chosen to become God's Friends". The September 11 mass was Dedicated to "Saint Chrysostomus, that great priest of Constantinople", with his "wonderful eloquence and great courage to face challenges", who "made out of despaired and godless people, a people of brothers", opening a possibility to "become all one complete entity", as Pope Benedict reminded.

- "Reason never enters in real contradiction with Faith", stressed Pope Benedict, who prepared his speeches for France during a short Summer rest at Brixen/Bressanone's Seminar, whose Library honors both "Faith and Science".. - "We must use not only our Reason, but also our Faith" : "Get away from Idolatry", "cupidity", "avidity for money, power or even knowledge deviating from essential aims", and other "falses appearances". and "build your Home on the Rock", "with the force that Holy Spirit gives to those who let it act in them", he said to the People of Paris.

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Benedict at Lourdes : - "Become Light (even) in the Dark !"
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- "Our World needs Hope", stressed Pope Benedict, addressing an impressive TorchLight procession at Lourdes' sanctuaries, where a Sea of Lights held by Hundreds of Thousands of People gathered at Pyrenee's Mountains from all over Europe astonishingly kept their flames despite a heavy Rain at a windy Dark Night...

- "150 years earlier (1858 - 2008), ..here, in the cave, ... a simple young girl, Bernadette .. saw a Light". "The everyday life of her Family was, however, made of Misery, Sadness, Sickness, Misunderstandings, Rejection and Poverty... It was hard to live in Jail". Today, "we think to all Human Beings who suffer : The innocent Victims who face Violence, War, Terrorism, Hunger, Injustices, Catastrophes, Hate and Oppression, Violations of Human Dignity and of their fundamental Rights, of their Liberty to act and think. We also think to those who face Familial problems, sufferings from Unemployment, Sickness, Infirmity, Isolation, or their situation as Immigrants, without forgetting those who suffer and die for the name of Christ", he said.

- "But the Shadows of the Earth, did not hinder Sky's Light to shine : <<The Light shines in the Dark>>" ..."A Way full of Light opens in Human History even in its Darkest moments" : ..."As Night falls, Christ tels us : <<- Keep your Lamps alight !>>."Hold a Light while walking in the Night .. sums up our condition as Christians on their way : "We need light, and we are called to become Light !", Benedict stressed to People setting in motion Lights, Flags and Songs with enthousiasm.

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"<<- She looked at me as a Person, who speaks to another Person>>, the poor girl had noted."Light emerges from such a Dialogue", stressed the Pope : "A small Flame called Hope, Compassion and Tenderness dwells inside those who return after being moved by Lourdes' experience". "Christ .. entrusts us with the Mission to let the Light of Charity shine : To make of our Prayers an Act of Love to our brothers and to Fraternal Charity", he concluded.

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