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Home arrow newsitems arrow Macron and Merkel appeal to "EU Citizens"/"Europeans" for a "Crucial" Year 2018+

Macron and Merkel appeal to "EU Citizens"/"Europeans" for a "Crucial" Year 2018+

Автор ACM
Monday, 01 January 2018
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*Strasbourg/Angelo Marcopolo/- From Both sides of the Rhine river, French and German Leaders, Emmanuel Macron and Angie Merkel, (the Youngest and the most Experienced), joined their forces by launching parallel Vibrant Appeals, for the 1st Time directly addressed to "EU Citizens", speaking as "We, Europeans", etc., on the occasion of their Wishes for the New Year 2018, which point at an Horizon of forthcoming Crucial Public Debates and Moves for Europe's foreseable Future.

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 - "My dear fellow European Citizens : 2018 is a very Particular Year", because "it will be of Decisive importance on a European level", stressed from the outset French President Macron.


 - "As you know, I am fully Committed to this Fight, since I'm very deeply convinced that Europe is Good for France", and "that France can't succeed withOut a Stronger Europe" he reminded.


 >>> -  In fact, "I will Need You (EU Citizens), this Year". Because "I wish, indeed, that you'd be able to Express yourshelf, through (EU) Citizens' Consultations, (and) Say What you Want for Europe, some Months Before our European Elections" of May 2019, in order "to allow for your (EU Member Countries') Governments to Design a Great Project", he highlighted.


- Because "We Need to Find anew the European Ambition, to find a Europe with more Sovereignity, more Unity, more Democratic, because it's Good for our People".


- Indeed, "I profoundly Believe that Europe can Become that Economic, Social, Ecological and Scientific Power, which will be Able to Face China, (and) the USA, by supporting those Values which shaped our lives and are our Joint History", Macron vowed.

- "For that European UpSurge, I Need Your Determination, so that, Together, we don't yield anything, neither to (narrow-minded) nationalists, nor to euro-Sceptics"

- "As far as I'm concerned, I'll continue to Work with Each one of our European Partners, and particularly with Germany", he promised in this regard.

- Because "such an Intimate Colloquium with our German Friends is the Necessary Condition for any European Advance ; it doesn't exclude Dialogue with All our other (EU) Partners, but it's by this, that Everything Starts", he observed, (speaking just one year before UK's 2019 BREXIT).


- And "it's Necessary to Advance much Further, on that area too, Breaking up with the Habits of the Past", in order "to Find anew that shared Taste of a Future that We Decide for ourselves".


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- Making an indirect but crystal-clear Hint to a Method strikingly Similar to "Eurofora"'s 1997-2017 Project (for Public Debates between Citizens and EU Institutions Before they take Important Decisions affecting their lives or Society at large), Macron, characteristically promised, as far as the Decision-Making Process is concerned, to "Respect, and Always Listen" to "Many among you (Citizens) who don't share such a Policy Today". And "I'll make sure that All Debates take place, and All Voices - even Dissident - are Heard. But ... I won't stop Acting : I'll Always Listen, I'll Explain our situation and its Realities, i'll Respect (People's Views), and, at the End (of that Process), I'll Do, because that's what is Needed, and that's what you Expect", he described earlier, mutatis-mutandis.


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+ Almost at the Same Time, from the Other Side of Rhine river, German Chancellor Angie Merkel, stressed that "the Crucial Issue of the Coming Years" , "will be" the fact that "the 27 EU Countries (after UK's BREXIT) must be Motivated, more Strongly than ever, to Hold Together, as 1 Community".


- Indeed, regarding the "Challenges of the Future" and "the Needs of All our Citizens", "Germany's Future is InSeparable from the Future of Europe", "because the World will Not Wait for us", accross "All" main points, she observed :


- "We must Act Today to Create the Conditions ... to Thrive 10 - 15 Years from now. And (we'll) truly Thrive, when, .. Success Benefits Everyone, improving and Enhancing our Lives", the German Chancellor Highlighted :
- F.ex., "In this pursuit, the Key principle of the social market economy – that Economic Success and Social Cohesion are two sides of the same coin – can also be the Compass guiding us through this era of Digital progress".

=> "This means, on one hand: - securing existing jobs while also creating entirely new jobs for the future, - supporting companies even more when it comes to researching and developing innovative technologies, - making the state a digital pioneer,- and especially preparing ourselves and our children for digital progress through the best education and further training".


+ "And, on the other hand, it means: - focusing on Families, relieving the Financial burden on them, so that they can find an even better balance between the demands of professional and family life, - making good and dignified Care possible by strengthening the care professions and providing even better support to people who care for family members at home, - and – not least – providing for Equal living conditions in every region ..., whether in cities or in the countryside. And we will have to invest even more in a Strong state that Defends the Rules of our society, and provides for your Security – for all of our security"


>>> But the overall Main point "will be a matter of whether, WE : EUROPEANS, represent our Values in a Globalised and Digital World", Merkel characteristically underlined.


=> - "Germany and France want to work Together to make this a success, and in doing so help make Europe fit for the Future", she vowed.


- This must be done "assertively and in a spirit of Solidarity, both Internally and Externally, thus also working for an Economically Successful and Equitable Europe".


+ "As well as consistently standing up for the Protection of our External (EU) Borders, and the Security of our (EU) Citizens".


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 - In this regard, French President Macron vowed to "Win the Battle" "against the Islamist Terrorism", both in the Middle-East and at SubSaharian Africa, as well as inside Europe, but Also to "Win the Peace" at an "International" area, by "guaranteing the Stability of States, and the Respect of All Minorities".

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+ As Macron (Comp. Supra), mutatis-mutandis, Angie Merkel also pointed at "a Vibrant Democracy", "part" of which is "the Struggle to Find the right Answers", in "a Society with Many Voices, in the best sense", (i.e. via Public Debates too).

- However, "at the same time, we are United by the Values of ... Respect for the inviolable Dignity of every Individual, and of every individual's Liberties", the German Chancellor concluded.

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>>> But a Crystal-clear Common overall Concern, shared by Both Franco-German Leaders, is, for "2018," to Ensure the Social Cohesion" of EU Countries' People, as they described in extenso, (on a key point deserving a specific publication for itself).


    While "Social" measures, "Work", and "Education", etc. were cited, in this regard, from Both, Macron also added the "Need for a Cultural Imaginary of a Future, where Everyone can find his/her place".

 

(../..)
 
 
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    The incoming Swedish EU Presidency (July-December 2009) may still remain in favour of Turkey's controversial EU bid, despite June 2009 EU Elections' results, but it has "very strong demands on Turkey"'s obligation to respect EU Rules, said the Head of Swedish Foreign Ministry's Press Service, Cecilia Julin, to "EuroFora", reacting to critical Press reports.

    - "I know (that) the link is often made also to Sweden's position on Turkey"'s controversial EU bid. Indeed, "we (Swedish EU Presidency) are very much engaged in the future membership of Turkey, but not without fullfiling all the Criteria".

    - "It's very clear that we (Swedish EU Presidecny) have very Strong Demands on Turkey, in a sort of concept for Future membership of the Union, ...which will be a Long Process...", she stressed.

    This means, in particular, "the Copenhagen Criteria (on Human Rights, Democracy and Rule of Law), and also the adaptation to the Acquis of the European Union".

     - "If you listen to what Mr. Bildt (the Swedish Foreign Minister) says on Turkey at different occasions, it's very clear : We want Turkey to become part of the Union, in the Future. But we want it to fullfil all the Criteria : The Acquis of the European Union. That's very clear", she concluded.

    The Senior Official of the Swedish Foreign Ministry was reacting to critical Press Reports, from Brussels' Journalists invited by EU Commission's secretariat to Stockholm, who claimed that Bildt was abusing of a ..."Whip" (sic !) against Cyprus, by "threatening" the presence of UNO's Peace-keeping force at the "Green line" which separates the island's Government-controlled areas from the territories occupied by Ankara's army, if Nicosia didn't accept any political solution, regardless of Turkey's demands, before the end of 2009.

        Governing AKEL Party's new Secretary General, Andros Kyprianou, reacted by declaring that no-one can threat the People of Cyprus : -"We shall decide for our Future, and nobody else",  he reportedly said, asking to "keep calm". "In order to find a Solution soon, certain basic Principles must be respected", he stressed, calling those who feel an urgency to use their influence on Turkey. Other Political Parties were more critical.

    This was a reference to recently reported statements by Turkish Minister Bagis, Prime Minister Tayip Erdogan and Turkey's National Security Council (a Military-Political body), accused to push towards a partitionist "2 States" solution, contrary to UNO SC Resolutions for Cyprus' reunification.

    December 2009 is a crucial moment for EU's appraisal of Turkey's controversial EU bid, because EU Council has decided to review then Ankara's compliance with the European position on the recognition of Cyprus' Government, which was clearly set out by an EU reply of 21 September 2005 to Turkish Prime Minister Tayip Erdogan's claims, refusing to recognize even the existence of EU Member Cyprus, in controversial statements he made to London (former EU chair) on July 29, 2005.

    EU Parliament's latest Resolution on Turkey, adopted on March 2009 in Strasbourg, warned Ankara that "the non-fulfillment of Turkey's commitments... by December 2009, may further seriously affect the process of Negotiations" with the EU.

    In practice, the issue boils down to Ankara's "embargo" against Ships and Airplanes using Cyprus' seaports or airports at the strategic EU island, which traditionaly hosts one of the World's biggest Shipping flags. EU has already "freezed" 6 relevant Chapters in EU - Turkey Negotiations since December 2006, after Ankara refused to fullfil a commitment it had undertaken when EU had decided to open controversial "accession" negotiations with Turkey, back on December 2005.

    - "As far as EU - Turkey relations are concerned, it's clear that Turkey needs to fullfil its obligation of full, non-discriminatory implementation of the additional Protocol (to "EC-Turkey Association Agreement"),  This is an important issue....and should be addresseed as soon as possible as it clearly affects the pace of the accession negotiations.Issues covered by the Declaration of September 2005 will continue to be followed up, and progress is urgently awaited", warned earlier in Strasbourg the out-going Czech EU Presidency (former vice-Prime Minister Alexander Vodra).

    But the Head of the Swedish Foreign Ministry's Press Service, Cecilia Julin, dismissed "interpretations" by "some" that Foreign Minister Carl Bildt was reportedly "threatening" Cyprus with consequences on the UNFICYP, if it doesn't accept any solution until December 2009, while Turkey is reportedly delaying in an attempt to impose a partitionist "2 States" solution.

    On the contrary, Julin, stressed that "Sweden has strong demands on Turkey'"s respect of "Copenhagen Criteria and EU Acquis".

    Meanwhile, Sweden  is "concerned" about the risk of "Stalemate" in Cyprus' Talks, but is well aware that "the main responsibilities lie with the two leaders and the UNO", Europe playing only a role of "facilitator".

    After carefully verifying, the Head of Swedish Foreign Ministry's Press Service, stressed to "EuroFora" that Bildt's reference to UNFICYP "was not linked to a Threat", and dismissed those who "interpreted" it so.

    On the contrary, the Swedish EU Presidency acknowledged the fact that Peace Talks are mainly for the UN and the leaders of the Cypriot communities, EU's role being limited into that of a "facilitator".

    As for Turkey's reported attempts to impose a "2 States' solution", the Head of the Swedish Foreign Ministry's Press Service sharply replied by stressing that Turkey must respect the "EU Acquis" rules.

    In particular :

    - "Basically he (Bildt) underlined that it's the leaders of the two communities in Cyprus and the UN that have the main responsibilities for solving the problem", started to say the Swedish Senior Official to "EuroFora", referring to the above-mentioned "briefing".

    - "But the EU had a role in sort of pointing out the benefits and facilitating a little bit the outcome for the settlement of the whole Cyprus' issue", she added.

    - "And he did state the Fact, that the rest of the World (i.e. USA, etc) will, of course, look at the differend issues which are at the table, and the future of the UN Peace keeping force is part of what is at the table", she admitted.

    - "I understand that some have interpreted that as a Threat, by the Swedish Minister" "But", in reality, "it's a statement of a Fact, that, when we'll look at the differend issues, one of the issues on which we shall have to take a stand on, is the future of the UN Peace keeping force in Cyprus".

    Indeed, one of the questions usually raised for a Solution of Cyprus' issue is what International and/or European or other Guarantees, by a Peace-keeping force, might be needed afterwards, eventually for a transitory period.

    Questioned anew by "EuroFora" whether (according to critical Press Reports) this could be taken as a veiled warning that, if Cyprus didn't accept any Turkish demand for any solution whatever, it might be left alone to face Ankara's Military Invasion/Occupation, she denied :

    - "He (Bildt) didn't say it in that way"... "It was not linked to a threat, or anything like that", the Head of the Swedish Foreign Ministry's Press Service stressed.

    On the contrary, "he (Bildt) underlined that the main responsibility lies with the parties concerned on the island". "The EU can try to facilitate and show the benefits of reaching a settlement. But also, when the EU and the rest of the World (i.e. USA) will have to look at it, they will look at all the Facts on the table, and the presence of the UN Peace-keeping force is one".

    And "he (Bildt) didn't speak about that at all", she replied to "EuroFora" question on Turkey's reported attemps to impose, in one way of another, a partitionist "2 States solution".

    Asked whether Bildt's aim was to incite both parties to move forward efficiently, she agreed :

    - In fact, "the EU is really very concerned with the Stalemate in the situation. Yes !", the Head of Sweden's Foreign Ministry's Press Service anounced. That's why Bildt "was hoping for the two parties (i.e. for Turkey's also) to engage and break, a little-bit, the present stalemate, come to a solution of the issue" of Cyprus.

    But, replying  to a "EuroFora"s question on the risk, denounced by several politicians in case of strict Time Deadlines, for Turkey to provoke a stalemate and wait for the time to come to impose a partitionist "2 States' solution", she reacted by pointing at Turkey's obligation to respect "EU Acquis" :

    - "Turkey must fullfil the EU Acquis : That's clear !", the Swedish Senior Official stressed.

    More details are expected when Swedish Prime Minister Reinfeldt will debate his Programme with new MEPs at EU Parliament's plenary mid-July in Strasbourg, that he has visited already in 2008.

    Foreign Minister Carl Bildt became familiar with Strasbourg's CoE last year, when Sweden chaired the PanEuropean organization of Human Rights. As EU chairman-in-office, he will also chair the 27-member States strong EU Group inside the 47-member States strong CoE.

    Minister for EU affairs, Cecilia Malmstrom is well known at EU Parliament, where she has been an active MEP of the Liberal Group for many years, following also Press Freedom issues.

    Both have already made various statements at "EuroFora", on differend topical matters.

    ***

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