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Haupt arrow newsitems arrow Green Candidate Strasbourg Mayor Barsheghian Endorses EF Project on Citizen/MEP Debate before EU Act

Green Candidate Strasbourg Mayor Barsheghian Endorses EF Project on Citizen/MEP Debate before EU Act

Geschrieben von ACM
Wednesday, 11 March 2020

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*Strasbourg/Angelo Marcopolo/- The currently Most Popular (according to Polls) Candidate for Strasboug's New Mayor, Armenian-origin "Green", Jeanne Barsheghian, speaking to "Eurofora" Both on 4 and 9 March 2020, Expressed, in a Crystal-clear way, her "Total Agreement" with "Eurofora"s Project for EU Citizens' Dialogue with MEPs Before Important Final EU Decisions Affecting People's Lives and/or Society at large are taken at Full Plenary Sessions here, Each Month, in order to Strengthen Modern European Democracy.

+ In this regard, She Also Added an Interesting Point concerning Relevant Cooperation also Between several European Cities Networked with Strasbourg, (and, probably, Brussels, too)

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     - "Eurofora"s 1st Question, (at a Brief exclusive Interview given After a Collective Debate among All Candidates, at the Prestigious "International Library Kleber", on March 4) evoked "European affairs", and, after observing the Fact of various "Green" Alliances in several EU Countries, including Austria, Germany, etc., also Together with ChristianDemocrats/EPP, (even at Strasbourg's Neighbour "Baden-Wurttenberg" Länder, etc), pointed at some MEPs' alleged Preferences for EU Parliament's work in Brussels and/or Strasbourg, stressing that "it's Not Only about Transports" etc, "But Also about Press Impact".

- So that "certain Projects (as "Eurofora"s, since 2006/2007+) aim to Create (MEPs') Public Debates with Citizens Before the Plenary Sessions", "i.e. Before Important Final Decisions are taken", "usually in Strasbourg, since here (Traditionaly) Concludes almost everything" in EU Parliament's decision-making process, "After having been Prepared in Brussels, to which due Attention should also be paid". For that purpose, f.ex., the Previous Friday, "Saturday or Sunday could be used", We Suggested.

- "In Strasbourg ?", she proposed the Candidate New Mayor of the City.

- "Naturally, but Not Only, since with Today's New Communication Technologies, it could be Even for those EU Citizens who might be staying up to Scandinavia !", "Eurofora" added, More Widely.

- "Certainly", Barsheghian reacted Positively.

- "I Absolutely Agree with that !", she clearly Welcomed in Reply.

+ By the way, " I've just said at a Debate about EU Parliament", "that we should Engage More the Citizens also of Strasbourg on European Issues". "F.ex., when (EU's) Free Trade Treaties are Discussed, some have the Impression that it's something which exists Far Away, While, in Fact, it's going to have a Direct Impact in People's Everyday Lives !", she observed.

_- So "I Wish that such EU Debates could involve (EU) Citizens, in our City". That's why, "I took the Commitment for, at least 1 Debate per Month, inside the City Counil's Room, on EU Parliament", Barsheghian proposed.

- "But, that Should be done Before the Plenary" session's Final Decisions, "Eurofora" Clearly suggested.

- "Thank you for that", she Kindly Concluded this conversation, Smiling.

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 + A Good Chance to Develop that Discussion Further with "Eurofora", was offered, just a Few Days Later, On March 9, when Barseghian spoke at "Cathedral's Circle", hosted at Hôtel "Cathedral", facing Strasbourg's Most Famous and Greatest Monument :

- Initialy, she stressed, there, that she "Believe(s) in the Values of Experimentation" and "Illustration", reiterating her Wish for "a Great Debate, with EU Experts (MEPs ?) and Open to Everybody", in order "to Explain, have a Pedagogic effect" on European Issues, "Each Month".

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=> This Incited a Question on "certain Pre-Existing Projects", as that of "Eurofora", proposing to Organise Debates, the Week Before (Final) Decisions are taken in Strasbourg (Full Week Plenary Sessions), Not Only for Information (of the Society), But Also with an Active Participation of Citizens, who would Express their Opinions about (imminent) Decisions which Affect their Lives (and/or Society at large)".

- For that purpose, "Internet and other New (Communication) Technologies, could be used, as well as "in situ", involving Hotels, (Associations), etc., while that would Also be of great Interest to many Medias (not only 1 or 2 alone) and MEPs, Attracting several Journalists"

+ Particularly if "such Debates would take place In View of ForthComing Decisions, With the Participation of (EU) Citizens in the Decision-Making Process, and a Duty (or Commitment, for EU Politicians), to Reply to the People Affected by those (EU) Decisions, in a way respecting, at least, Basic (Legal/Human Rights') Principles, as that of Proportionality, etc", "Eurofora" suggested.

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>>> - "I Entirely Agree With You on that Point !", Barseghian Positively Replied to the above-mentioned "Eurofora"s Question.

- Indeed, "Everything like that, which Would Strengthen (EU) Citizens' Appropriation" of Main Topical EU Issues, "Anything which Would Facilitate their Participation to Those Debates, would Also ReinForce the European Democracy, and, De Facto, European Parliament's Role, Because, in Fact, We are Speaking about that" : I.e. "the European Democracy's Importance", she Rightfully observed.

- In this regard, "there are a Lot of (Pertinent) Debates, f.ex., as that of Free Trade (International) Agreements, the Debate about the Common Agricultural Policy, with Huge Implications (also) on Our Food, Urban and/or Regional Planning, our Peasants, etc., which are Fundamental Issues Affecting Our EveryDay Lives", Barseghian concretely illustrated, inter alia.

=> In Consequence, "as far as I am concerned, I  Fully Agree with What You ("Eurofora") Propose, that is to say, Previous (EU) Citizens' Debates, which would Allow for Everybody to Participate".

+ "And", Moreover, "I Wish for Strasbourg's City, Together With all Other (European) Cities with which it Works in Network, to Facilitate, and Even Organize those Debates, which would Allow to Feed the European Democratic Debate" in Wider terms, she interestingly Suggested, in Addition.

=> - "In Conclusion, myself, I Entirely Agree with that !", Barseghian clearly Reiterated.

- Indeed, as she had already Stressed Earlier, as a matter of General Principle, "I Believe in Democratic Debate" and "Citizens' Participation".

 

(../..)

 

("Draft News")

 

(NDLR : "Eurofora"s 2 Questions were Raised

by Angelo Marcopolo on March 4, and by Eugenie Marcopolo on March 9).

 

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Former "Green-Red" German government's Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer's job at the controversial Turkish pipeline "Nabucco" was denounced as "not proper", "very bad", and "incompatible with Democracy", by the new President of EU Parliament's EuroLeft Group, German Lothar Bisky, replying to an "EuroFora" question.

For once, criticism of Joschka Fischer's doings with Turkey affecting Europe, didn't come only from the Center-Right of the political spectrum, but even from his Left side : The experienced Bisky, who has been chairing all over 1993-2009 the PDS - Die Linke party :  

- "Former Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer got involved in dealings with oil-gaz business in a foreign country, Turkey, and its controversial Nabucco pipeline. This raises questions about Democracy, also because of the well known problems of Human Rights violations in that country. Do you thing that this might be abused in order to cover up and close EU's eyes on Human Rights violations ?", "EuroFora" asked Bisky.

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- "Nabucco pipeline is (only) at the planning stage". And "there are some difficulties",  he observed from the start. But "'I don't want to get into the details of Nabucco pipeline, because I don't think that there is any point for it at the moment".
 
At any case,  "we  (EU Parliament's EuroLeft Group) strongly believe that Politicians should not get involved in the Energy Business, and all these commercial transactions", President Bisky declared on the Joschka Fiischer's affair.

- "We feel that it's something that shouldn't be done. It's not proper !"           

- "We don't think that it's compatible with Democracy either, and it gets politics into a very Bad track", Bisky went on to denounce.
                                                                                                                                                                        
- "EuroLeft  and "Die Linke" always spoke against that, saying that politicians should not get directly into the arms of private enterprises"

- "It is pretty bad if a former Minister takes a job f.ex. in a major Energy producer. So, it's an issue if a Minister who may have seen excellent opportunities, subsequently gets personally grasp of them, in very serious parts of the economy, once he has given up his (Government) job."

- "It doesn't really make politics in general look any better'", Bisky concluded.

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Earlier, this week in Strasbourg, other Journalists had also raised critical questions on former Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer's involvement in the conroversial Turkish Nabucco pipeline to the President of his own EuroParty : Kohn-Bendit of the "Greens", who, contrary to Bisky, tried to find excuses for Fischer, while criticizing his long-time partner, Schroeder for having done a similar move :

- "Shroeder was chancellor", and he "negociated" with "Russians", who gave him a job only "3 Months" after he resigned from the Government. While "Joschka Fischer", on the contrary, got a job with the controversial Turkish Nabucco pipeline only "4 Years after" he left the Government. "He didn't negociate Nabucco", so I have "no objection", Kohn Bendit claimed.

But, many Facts indicate the contrary :

Joschka Fischer was Foreign Minister in Germany from 1999 up to 2005 : I.e. from the year that EU took the controversial decision to give Turkey a "Candidate" status, until he year it started controversial "accession negotiations, (later declared "open-ended" after Sarkozy-Merkel's arrival from 2005-2007).

During that period was prepared the controversial so-called "Annan" Plan (in fact, drafted by others and attributed afterwards to the former UN SG) on Cyprus, which failed after a Popular Referendum said "No" on 2004 with a large Majoriy of 3/4 : 75%. Mainly because it was criticized for making too much concessions to the Turkish side :  Particularly by restricting Greek Cypriot Refugees' Human Right to return to their ancestral Land and/or get restitution of their Familiy Homes and private properties, usurpated by Ankara's Army since the 1974 militay invasion and continuing occupation of the northern part of Cyprus. And by weakening the Central Government, leaving to 2 "constituent States" so much powers and separate interests that more conflicts appeared inevitable, provoking the danger of a break-down in the foreseable future, with more crisis, troubles, perhaps bloodshed, etc., instead of creating an harmoniously integrated, really one federal State.

The controversial Plan was finalized on March-April 2004 at Burgenstock (Switzerland), curiously in the presence of an Envoy by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Germany, then governed by Joschka Fischer, but in the absence of a French and not even an European Union's Envoy, contrary to what was usually practiced on similar occasions in Switzerland (fex. in 1997 at Montreux, in 2000 at Geneva, etc).

Turkey notoriously exploited the failure of the "Annan" Plan in order to convince the EU to decide to start accession Negotiations on December 2004. This provoked an unprecedented series of Institutional Crisis inside the EU, shortly afterwards, when French and Dutch People rejected, 2 popular EuroReferenda by a majority "'No" vote to the EU Constitutional Treaty on 2005, aggraveted in 2004 a Majority Abstention to EU Elections, etc., followed by the recent Irish "No", etc.

"Nabucco" Gas pipeline was notoriously planned since ..2002. It follows an even earlier idea, for an Oil pipeline Baku-Ceyhun, which started to be prepared on 1999-2001 and was meanwhile recently completed.  

So, facts indicate that what is now at stake is based on decisions made during Joschka Fischer's term as former Foreign Minister, closely interested in Turkey's controversial EU-bid.

To the point that he now practically ...switched jobs with a poliician from Turkey, (the State which pays today openly Joschka Fischer), Mr. Ozdemir, who came earlier in Germany, got fast the nationality, and became EiuroMP in a few years, continuing now as head of the "Greens" in Germany, i.e. in Joschka's former job !...

Such astonishing facts risk, unfotunately, to give to German politician Lothar Bisky's criticism of  representative Democracy a topical meaning :

 - "We (EuroLeft Group) think that what is really at stake is Democracy. It's not only about Gas Pipelines or Energy sources", President Lothar Bisky went on to add in his reply to "EuroFora"'s question on Joscka Fischer's personal interests in the controversial Turkish "Nabuco" pipeline.

Such facts, "make People get more distance from Politics. ...People had had enough, and they are fed up !".

- "That's why we (EuroParliament's "EuroLeft" Group) want to strengthen Direct Democracy in Europe. Citizens should be involved in the (EU) Decision-making. In the end of the day, it's not going to help anyone if Politicians are always taking decisions, without involving Citizens. We want to give a voice to the People of Europe. They've got to have their say in the decisions that are taken. That's one of our absolutely fixed and steadfast views. We want more Direct Democracy in Europe. That's how it can become more effective and stronger", he concluded.

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