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Home arrow newsitems arrow 1st EU University aims Integration First but Development can go Fast tell EF French+German Officials

1st EU University aims Integration First but Development can go Fast tell EF French+German Officials

Written by ACM
Thursday, 12 April 2018
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*Strasbourg/Great East Region HQ/Angelo Marcopolo/- Speaking to "Eurofora" on their Decision, Today, to start Building here the 1st European University, Key Franco-German Actors at this EU's Core Area, as, inter alia, also, f.ex, Baden-Wurttemberg's Minister-President Kretschmann, Euro-Campus' President, Professor Schiewer, French EU affairs Minister Loiseau, Strasbourg's "Great-East" Region's Education, Research and European affairs' Committee President Werner, Academy Rector Bejean, etc, (See Infra), Highlighted mainly the 1st Priorities and a Time-Horizon, as things stand Today, at the foreseable Future.

 

 official_joint_francogerman_statement_towards_the_creation_of_the_1st_european_university_400


    The Ambitious Project, had been already Evoked at an "Eurofora" Question, back on 2016, in the Press Conference which had Marked the Creation, as a 1st Step, of the Franco-Germano-Swiss "European Campus" here (Comp.:
http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/eusciencecomissioneronchinaandeuuniversitiesgroup.html, etc), and even as Early as in a Press-point by f. Rapporteur on Science for Alsace Region, f. University v.President responsible for Research, Professor Michel Granet, already from 2012, but Discussed also from the Beginning of 2018 with Strasbourg University's President Deneken and Prefect Jean-Claude Marx, (who had a ...Premonitory feeling, pointing at Franco-German Leaders' forthcoming moves: http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/strasbourgregionprefectoneuropeanuniversity.html ).

 

Meanwhile, it has Become a Key part in New French President Emmanuel Macron's EU-ReVival Project, presented at his landmark Speech at Sorbonne University in Paris on 2017, and probably also of his overall Project for the Future of Europe, that he's expected to Debate with MEPs Next Week at EU Parliament in Strasbourg, just before Launching (at the Vosges Mountain's Hights) the 1st EU Citizens' Consultation in a Long Series in the run-up to the forthcoming EU Elections of May 2019.

 

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    - Put Science Nowadays, at the Place of Coal and Steel, in the Beginning of EU Integration, could realistically Revive the European Dream, while History always Advances based on Necessities, stressed in Substance from the outset the New President of Strasbourg's "Great East" Region, (which Extends from Swizerland up to Belgium, and Brings Together 5 EU Countries at the Core of Europe, Together with France, Germany, and Luxembourg, by Sharing Common Borders), Jean Rottner, giving the tone.

 

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"Eurofora" was Surprized to be given the floor to Raise the 1st Question among Journalists in a Press-Point organized just after the Officials' Announcements and the Signature of a Formal Declaration of Intent for the Creation of the 1st European University, asked, in substance, whether the Priority, at the Beginning, would be Integration at the Franco-German Core of the EU, or, rather, to Focus from the outset into Dealing with the Most Developed Science centers in Europe and the World, as, f.ex. in USA, Russia, China, etc, (the one, obviously, not excluding the other)...

 

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  - The First thing to do, naturally is to launch an Efficient Integration, creating a Common Organisation, withOut various Obstacles provoking Division, but f.ex. Common Courses, Joint Infrastructures, Planification, etc. But this is certainly due to evolve, at a 2nd Stage, in Joint Projects able to Succesfully Face Global Competition, stressed, in substance, in Reply to "Eurofora"s Question, the President of "Euro-Campus", Professor Hans-Jochen Schiewer, from the University of nearby Freiburg.

 

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 - The Franco-German+ Integration aims to create an Avant-Guard Able to UpGrade All the EU", since it acts according to the General European Interest, reacted, in substance, to "Eurofora"'s Question, afterwads, the New French Minister for EU Affairs, Nathalie Loiseau.

 

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    + At the Same Time, in Parallel, Strasbourg University's President, Michel Deneken, speaking to "Eurofora", declared also his Interest to take a Leading Part in a possible realisation of the proposal made by new COE Assembly''s President, Michele Nicolletti, to create PanEuropean "University Networks" around Research on the Content and the Implementation of CoE's main Legal Treaties, as that on Human Rights, BioEthics, etc..


+ Nevertheless, When "Eurofora" started Asking the main participants about a more or less concrete "Time Horizon" for the real Beginning of the overall Project to Build the 1st European University at EU's Core, there were Various, but, in fact, Convergent reactions :

 

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 - Winfried Kretschmann, the Minister-President of Baden-Wurttemberg's Federated State (Länder), at Neighbouring Germany, Replying to a relevant Question by "Eurofora", pointed a the Need to Consult, at First, collectively the Academia, about its own concrete Preferences, and, the, in about one years' time, really start to move collectively. But, already, in the Meantime, there are at least "2 First Pojects", almost Ready to Boost, one including Quantum, the other Chemistry, etc., as Kretcshmann told us, (speaking also in the vicinity of NOBEL Prize Winner in Chemistry, Professor Jean-Marie Lehn, from Strasbourg)...

 

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 -------------------


- F.ex., the Rector of the Academy of Strasbourg, (who represented there also the French Minister of Education and Scientific Research), Sophie Bejean, told us, in substance, that a very Probable RDV might be around the "End of 2018", i.e. just "Before" the May 2019 EU Elections.

 

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- Because, inter alia, also Jean-Claude Juncker, EU Commission's President, has expressed the Wish to See the First Projects from European Universities to Start be presented for EU Funding at approximatively that Period of Time, she explained.

------------------------

 

great_east_regions_education_science_europe_committee_president_werner__agg_eurofora_400 


- At any case, "If they (Public Authorities) don't Move Fast Enough, then, it's the Society which will Start doing things by itself !", Warned, with Voluntarism, Francois Werner, the President of Strasbourg's "Great East" Region's Committee for Education, Research and European affairs...

 

 eurocampus_map__data_eurofora_400

 

 Already, "Euro-Campus" brings Together 5 Universities around the Superior Rhine (Ober-Rhine) Trans-Border area, (Strasbourg, Freiburg, Basel, Kalrsruhe and "Haute Alsace" - i.e. Colmar+Mulhouse), with more than 15.000 Scientists, 10.000 PhD Young Researchers, and 120.000 Students. Without excluding a priori also an eventual Future Extension up to Luxembourg and particularly Belgium, (since the New Strasbourg's Region of "Great-East" was, meanwhile, Extended up to there too, adding also another German Länder as Neighbour by the way), where "the Universities are Ready", as President Werner spontaneously reacted to a relevant "Eurofora"s query.

----------------

 zukunft_industrie_nov._2018_planned_megaexhibition_of_3_core_european_countries_france_germany_swiss___eurofora_400

+However, Science/Research are expected to Develop also the Economy, as "Great East" Region's President Rottner had already stressed Earlier Today, and, indeed, the Franco-German Regional Presidents Rottner and Kretschmann's Working Meetings didn't stop there at all, but fully Extended also during a busy Afternoon, as "Eurofora" found, Focusing, inter alia, particularly on the preparations of a Joint Franco-Germano-Swiss Mega-Exhibition on the "Industries of the Future" ("ZukunftsIndustrie"), scheduled on November 2018 at nearby Mulhouse, where Automatisation/Robotisation and Digitalisation seem to play the overall Music's main tune... 

 

futue_industries__robotisation_eurofora_400

future_industry_eurofora_400 

 

(../..)

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People in Europe and the World expect from CoE to make a succes of its "Monitoring" for Human Rights and Democracy, despite difficulties, said Finland's President Tarja Halonen to "EuroFora" at a crucial moment for the mecanism built 15 years ago by the paneuropean organization which celebrates its 60th Anniversary in 2009.

Halonen, known as "Mother" of CoE's "Monitoring" mecanism, a long-time MEP and former Foreign Minister before becoming Finland's President, holds a long experience in the mattter, after also serving twice as CoE and EU Chairwoman in the past. That's why she is well placed to judge how CoE's "monitoring" should deal today with some crucial issues of importance both to CoE and to the EU.

The move came just a Month before a crucial, last visit to Turkey, scheduled for June, by the President of CoE''s "Monitoring" Committee, Ukranian MEP Serge Holovaty, to finalize his Report on Ankara, the CoE Member State with the longest Monitoring procedure. From its results depends its overall credibility.

This is a Test-case, because, in fact, it's in order to avoid Sanctions threatened against Turkey by a CoE's Assembly's April 1995 Resolution for grave Human Rights violations, Democracy gaps, the continuing Military Occupation in Cyprus, the unresolved Kurdish problem, Aegean differend with Greece, etc., that MEPs decided to create, for the 1st time on April 1996, a "Monitoring" proces, allegedly destinated to check, without excluding Countries who did not fulfill all CoE's standards.

In the Past, the obliged withdrawal of Greece's Military regime and of its "Civil" cover-up out of the CoE had helped bring back Democracy in 1974. But, on the contrary, since April 1996, the idea was to "monitor" Human Rights' respect while keeping most concerned Countries inside the CoE. After Turkey's oldest example, this was extended also to several former "Eastern" European Countries, even if CoE's Assembly has imposed to some of them (fex. Ukraine, Russia, etc., after Belarus, Serbia, etc) various "Sanctions", that Ankara always avoided. Curiously more succesful even than .. USA itself, (a CoE "Observer" since 1995), which has been at least threatened with sanctions some years ago..

EU-effects of CoE's Monitoring process became obvious between 2001-2008, since the "closure" of this procedure, when CoE felt that a Country had met most of its Human Rights, Democracy and Rule of Law obligations, (i.e. the "Copenhagen Criteria" for the EU), helped trigger Negotiations with the EU for "Accession" or other closer relations : This occured already before the 2004 and 2007 EU Enlargements to former "Eastern" European Countries, as well as for the commencement of "accession" negotiations with Croatia, and of "open-ended" negotiations with Turkey in 2005.

    But a stricking new development are Holovaty's recent findings that on core Human Rights issues as Torture and Freedom of Expression, Turkey, even "5 Years after" CoE closed its "Monitoring", back in 2004, inciting EU to start accession Negotiations in 2005, still presents grave problems.

    His findings are of crucial importance after a 2008 CoE Resolution called, "if need be", to "seriously consider the possibility of Re-Opening the Monitoring procedure for Turkey" : A move which might affect Ankara's controversial EU bid, since EU Accession Negotiations are based on the Hypothesis that the Candidate fullfils the "Copenhagen Criteria" (See above)..
-------------------------
    Holovaty expressed his will to check  "Matters still Outstanding" and  those that he "didn't have an opportunity to discuss" at an earlier visit this year, "in order to discuss the more complex issues in greater depth", at his forthcoming New Visit to Ankara, before the December 2009 EU Summit.  This is all based on the 2004 CoE Resolution which stresses that, CoE "will continue.. post-monitoring Dialogue with the Turkish authorities,...in addition to a 12-points list,..and on any Other Matter that might arise in connection with Turkey’s Obligations as a CoE member state".

    CoE's Resolution also asks  from Turkey "to secure the proper Implementation of Judgements, particularly in the Cyprus v. Turkey InterState case", of 2001, which concerns also the plight of many Hundreds of MISSING People. It adds Turkey's obligations to "execute" ECHR's Judgements in the Loizidou case,..and in particular adopt General Measures to avoid repetition or continuation of Violations found by the Court" to the detriment of Refugees.

    Nevertheless, Holovaty said to "EuroFora" that "MISSING" persons,"might be included" and cannot be excluded, but he has yet to examine the situation "to find out  which issues will be raised" to the Turkish Government.

    Therefore, "EuroFora" asked Halonen, as the Historic "Mother" of CoE's Monitoring mecanism, if she thought that, "whenever there are grave Human Rights Violations, as fex. "MISSING" persons, attested even by ECHR's judgements, they should be always checked by a Monitoring process. Or could they be forgotten ?"
    
     - "We (CoE) must be, at the same time, Fair, Realistic, but not in the mind that "now we have Forgotten", etc., replied to "EuroFora"'s question Halonen, speaking as a matter of general principle.

    - "When we think of those People that are suffering from the lack of Democracy, of Human Rights, and of the Rule of Law", "we should find a base on how to deal with the (Monitoring) system more rapidly"', she stressed.

    - "Sometimes it's very difficult to combine Transparency and Effectivenes together, particularly in this specific case", she went on to say. But, "I have not found a (CoE Member) Country who could be insensitive in this sens", Halonen answered concerning grave Human Rights violations attested by the ECHR.

    - "I have no ready-made answer. I have the expectations that you, in the CoE, will, step by step, find the different types of the monitoring systems."

    Also "because this is a part of the UN's Post-Conflict system, (fex. when it comes to Cyprus' MISSING persons), and it's a more Global system". So that, "If we make a succes in Europe, the others will follow", throughout the World.  "But they expect that we (Europe) are this opportunity, this Opportunity to make a Succes", Halonen concluded.

    In addition, she advised to extend CoE's Monitoring to all its 47 Member States, "because, as long as we hear that, all these monitoring systems are "OK for the neighbor, but not for me", "it's very difficult" to understand. Something which could make easier to Compare...

    Finnish MEP Jaako Laakso, former CoE Rapporteur on the Occupied Territories of Cyprus and one of the 5 Signatories of the Historic CoE's call to create the "MONITORING" mecanism since 1996, was more specific :  - "We (CoE Assembly) have to find a way for the issue of Cyprus' MISSING People to be better followed", he stressed, anouncing his intention to "speak to Mr. Holovaty" about that. "There might be also other ways", added Laakso.

    - The 2008 "Year had been a very Bad one for Turkey with regard to Human Rights in general, and Freedom of Expression in particular", denounced, meanwhile, Holovaty's preliminary Post-Monitoringh Draft Report by Holovaty, published by the CoE on April 2009.

    "Amnesty International believes that freedom of expression is not guaranteed given the various articles of the Criminal Code that restrict it. .. "For example, 1,300 Websites are said to have been closed down by the (Turkish) authorities in 2008" ! While "the new Turkish Criminal Code was used to bring a total of 1,072 proceedings between June 2005 and April 2008, and led to the conviction of 192 people", for expressing views. "Representatives of the Özgür Gündem newspaper, which specialises in Kurdish affairs, ..complained about Numerous Attacks on their Freedom of Expression ...as was everyone who advocated a settlement to the question by means other than the intervention of the army" "According to their figures, 19 Newspapers had been suspended 43 times between 4 August 2006 and 4 November 2008" !...

    Moreover, on 2008,  CoE's "Ministers adopted its 4rth Resolution on the execution of the judgments of the ECHR, ...and outstanding issues regarding 175 Judgements and decisions relating to Turkey delivered between 1996 and 2008...  concerning Deaths resulting from the excessive use of force by members of the Security forces, the failure to protect the right to life, the DIisappearance and/or death of individuals, Ill-Treatment and the Destruction of property". CoE's " Ministers urged the Turkish authorities ...to ensure that members of Security forces of all ranks can be prosecuted without administrative
authorisation" for "serious crimes". Holovaty reminded.

"Nonetheless", Holovaty heard anew of "Several cases of Violence committed last year (2008) by the (Turkish) security forces". Amnesty International speaks of Many Cases of ill-treatment and Torture in the prisons and by the police". "Including, fex."'the death of Engin Ceber, a young man of 29 who died on October 2008 as a result of the TORTURE allegedly inflicted on him by police officers, prison staff and members of the gendarmerie. He was part of a group of people arrested on September 2008 during a demonstration and Press Conference in Istanbul'. Proceedings against suspects are "on-going" in this case.

- " I therefore noted an Obvious Contradiction between the Government’s stated “zero tolerance” policy.... of Torture and other forms of ill-treatment, and the different testimonies given", denounced CoE's Rapporteur.  Turkish "authorities must make considerable efforts to guarantee that proper investigations are carried out into allegations of abuses by members of the security forces and that perpetrators are effectively punished" "In this respect, I have requested detailed Statistics on the number of Investigations, acquittals and convictions in cases involving allegations of abuse in order to show the positive impact of the measures taken to date", Holovaty said, repeating a permanently unsatisfied CoE's demand to Turkey since a Decade...

    - "The Political Crisis that shook the country in the spring of 2008 highlighted the Weaknesses of the (Turkish) Constitution", which comes from the Military regime of 1982, "and the Urgent Need of Reforms", stressed from the outset CoE's Rapporteur in 2009. In particular, "the ...Democratic functioning of state institutions, including the independence of the judicial system, are crucial", he observes.

    But, "the Electoral  system and the ways in which it is circumvented do not appear to give those elected complete Legitimacy, and tend to pervert the course of direct universal suffrage", denounces Holovaty, observing that, even 5 Years later, Turkey did not yet change the 10% nationwide Threshold for a party to take any seat, which is "far higher" than the "3%" maximum in Europe and already condemned as contrary to European Standards by the CoE.

    + Moreover, EU Parliament's 2009 Report on Turkey, drafted by Dutch MEP Ria Oomen-Ruijten and adopted in Strasbourg on March, expresses "Concern over the Failure of the (Turkish) Judiciary to prosecute cases of Torture and Ill-treatment, the Number of which is Growing". EU also "is concerned about continuing Hostility and Violence against Minorities" in Turkey. It also "calls on the Turkish Government to launch, as a matter of Priority, a Political Initiatve favouring a lasting Settlement of the Kurdish issue, (while "condemning violence.. and terrorist groups"). EU "regrets that No progress has been made on establishing full, systematic Civilian suprevisory functions over the (Turkish) Military".

    The final results of Holovaty's 2nd and last visit to Turkley will be known later this year, and, at any case, before EU's December 2009 Summit.

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