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Home arrow newsitems arrow CoE Assembly EPP+Socialist+Left Groups Chiefs Fischer+Nicoletti+Cox to EF on Chairman Agramunt row+

CoE Assembly EPP+Socialist+Left Groups Chiefs Fischer+Nicoletti+Cox to EF on Chairman Agramunt row+

Written by ACM
Friday, 28 April 2017

*Strasbourg/CoE/+Brussels/EPP Summit/Angelo Marcopolo/- The sudden Big Row about CoE Assembly's President, Pedro Agramunt, (a ChristianDemocrat/EPP from Spain), Hotly Denounced by several Critics for a Hasty Trip to Syria, where he met President Assad, with the Help of Russian MEPs, accused to have Ommitted to previously Warn PACE's Bureau, etc., while, possibly, rushing to seize any opportunity to help Peace through Dialogue, (See also Infra, on Agramunt's initial Explanations), has now Reached Proportions withOut Any Precedent in History, on which the Presidents of the ChristianDemocrat/EPP, Socialist and Left Group of MEPs, Axel Fischer, Michele Nicoletti, and Tiny Cox, respectively, briefly but Topically spoke with "Eurofora":


To put it in a nutshell :


    President Agramunt, (after Initially providing a first Explanation to Critics, Earlier this week in Strasbourg), he did Not Participate, this Time, to an Exceptional Meeting of PACE's Bureau, due to Focus on againg Criticizing him, and, apparently, Left from CoE's Building, probably even from Strasbourg. According to PACE's Rules, there isn't any Legal means to Oblige him to do otherwise, Neither to eventually Resign.

    A PACE's Bureau Majority published a Critical Note against its President, Agramunt, calling to Strip him from many of his prerogatives, (f.ex. to Speak on Behalf of the Assembly, etc), and Elected its Senior Member, British Conservative MEP Sir Roger Gale in order to represent them, according to a Press Statement that he has just Read to Strasbourg's Journalists, including "Eurofora".




   Lithuanian ChristianDemocrat/EPP MEP Egidijus Vareikis, observed that there were several Absents, as well as Critical MEPs who didn't understand why Agramunt would have, necessarily, to Resign, and noted the Fact that, according to PACE's Rules, a simple Majority inside the Bureau could Not Destitute an Elected PACE President.

   Center-Right French MEP Ponzo di Bongo expressed his Anger for, curiously, Not being Informed at all, about what really happened, by the out-going Chair of his National Delegation, MEP ... from the Socialist Party, (who appeared in a Hurry to immediately Phone somewhere).

   After an apparently Unconclusive meeting (with Many Absentees, as "Eurofora" witnessed on the spot) of PACE's Biggest Political Group : That of ChristianDemocrats/EPP, (Agramunt's Political Family), its President, German CDU MEP Axel Fischer, anounced to "Eurofora" and other Journalists present in Strasbourg, his intention to Travel to Brussels in order to Speak about that Agramunt issue with the President of the European ChristianDemocrat/EPP Party (which Federates together All National Center-Right ChristianDemocrats/EPP parties in all European Countries), the Experienced Joseph Daul.


   Daul, speaking to "Eurofora", Afterwards in Brussels, at the Conclusion of an EPP Summit of Heads of State/Government, while locacious on various Other Topical Issues, on the Contrary, prefered Not to make yet Any Public Statement on Agramunt's case, but Told us that he, indeed, just Met with Fischer and they spoke about that matter. His momentaneous Silence might, perhaps, be due also to the Fact that, Exceptionally, the Spanish Prime Minister Rajoy wasn't present at that EPP Summit, while Daul himself, even if he was an Experienced former Chairman of EPP Group in EU Parliament, and Long-Time MEP of Strasbourg (CoE's Headquarters' City), nevertheless, had not a frequent opportunity to deal with CoE Assembly's Internal Affairs as such, (two Points obviously pleading for a Careful Approach of such a Delicate and UnPrecedented Issue).  

  Meanwhile, while already in Strasbourg, "Eurofora" had also a brief but Topical encounter with the President of the Socialist Group in CoE's Assembly, Italian MEP Michele Nicoletti, (who had just met also with Other Strasbourg's Journalists earlier, but obliged to decline for several others, from various CoE Member Countries, for exceptional reasons Independent of his free will).



 Nicoletti told us, in substance, that his Group was among those who believed that Agramunt should Resign, but claimed that, in fact, this would be UnRelated to the existence or absence of a Political Will for Good Relations with Russia and for a Peace Deal in Syria, that his National Government in Italy, (including EU's High Representative for External Action, Federica Mongerini : originating from the Same Political Family as his own), reportedly supported. Indeed, Nicoletti prefered to Focus on matters of General Principle, particulalry as far as CoE Assembly's working methods are concerned, Criticizein mainly an alleged Lack of previous Warning of PACE's Bureau by Agramunt about his imminent Meeting with the Syrian President Assad, escorted by a Russian Delegation.

    Agramunt, (who had been, in fact, Accompagnied also by some Other PACE's Top MEPs, including, f.ex., the President of the Liberal Group, etc), had already presented his Excuses, for not being able to meet, Previously, with PACE's Bureau, and stressed, earlier this week in Strasbourg, that he visited Syria as part of a National Team from Spain, (where he is Senator), and had informed his Foreign Ministry. He did not felt personally responsible for any eventual exploitation that others might have done of his participation to that trip, while he was deeply Committed to the Need to Help Find a Peaceful Solution to the Syrian Conflict, through Political Dialogue, as a matter of General Principle. But, despite having briefly met him Earlier this week in Strasbourg, at a entirely Different occasion, "Eurofora" (and several Other Strasbourg's Journalists) had Not any opportunity to Timely and clearly know what, in fact, was PACE President Agramunt's real and full Version for what happened nowadays, the Criticism and Measures take by a Majority in PACE's Bureau.

    President Nicoletti, (who is also Expected, according to a usual Agreement between the Biggest PACE's Political Parties, to eventually take over PACE's Presidency since Next Year, from January 2018 : A Possibility the he did Not Deny, while also Avoiding to Confirm Now Explicitly, with a kind Smile), however told "Eurofora" that he "Understood" the personal Sorrow of Pedro Agramunt, (who due to Conclude his Mandate as PACE's President, normally, towards the End of this Year), and, at any case, would not have any objection for that Job to be, eventually, entrusted, in the MeanTime, to anOther Member of the ChristianDemocrat/EPP Group. But he Firmly Excluded any eventual Compromise that might imply for Agramunt to Stay Longer in PACE's Presidency now, as things stand.



    + A priori, even more Surprizing appeared the Strong Criticism of Left Group's President, Tiny Cox from the Netherlands, who is, however, a frequent Ally to Russia's attempts to Explain its Position during PACE's various Debates, as well as traditionally against Militarist Interventions and Wars, but favorable, in Principle, to any attempts to find Peaceful Solutions to Conflicts : Indeed, speaking to "Eurofora", Cox Strongly Denounced mainly the (uncontested) Fact that Agramunt should Not have given any Impression (even Involuntary) to eventually Represent Officially CoE's Assembly in such a Controversial Top Political Meeting withOut Previously Informing PACE's Bureau, and Lacking its Previous Agreement.  

    [NDLR : UPDATE = New French President Emmanuel Macron's subsequent Statements in Brussels, about Accepting Syrian President Assad's role in a Desirable Peace Deal for the Future, were Not yet Known neither to Nicoletti, nor to Fischer or to Cox, when we spoke with them at the CoE in Strasbourg]

    In the MeanTime, "Eurofora" confirmed, in parallel, that an Exceptionally Important PACE's Draft Report on the most "Explosive" BioEthical Issue Nowadays, about Interventions on the Genome of Human Beings, (which, notoriously, can have Crucial Consequencies on all Humanity's Future), is Still on the Pipeline for a possible Public Debate and Vote of a Resolution by a PACE's Plenary, apparently Before the End of this Year (2017).

    Curiously, that "Hot" Report's preparation has been entrusted to a Socialist MEP from Belgium, whose Previous Drafts, on Various Other BioEthical Issues, had notoriously provoked Exceptional UpHeavals and Strong Reactions by Critics in the Recent Past, (Resulting, f.ex., in Referrals Back to Committee, and/or Votes of many Amendments radically Changing her Initial Draft, etc). And, usually, it was mainly (even if Not Only) the ChristianDemocrat/EPP Group of MEPs (i.e. Agramunt's Political Family) which freqently intervened in order to Rectify various eventually Dangerous Shortcomings, by such Controversial Drafts, inside CoE's Assembly.

    In such Contexts, normally, the successive Presidents of PACE's ChristianDemocrat/EPP Groups in CoE's History, (f.ex., among others, also Luc Van Der Brande, Lucca Volonté, Pedro Agramunt, etc), used to play an Important (even  if Discreet) Role in the Way that such "Hot" BioEthical Issues were Dealt with, already several Times in the Past, until recently.

    But, now, one among the Various Consequences of that UnPrecedented Row against Agramunt, (current PACE's President, and former ChristianDemocrat/EPP Group's President previously), is that it obviously may put such a Mechanism in Jeopardy : Only the forthcoming Future will tell...








(NDLR : Partly UPDATED on 29 April 2017)





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     The High-Tech, brand new Crisis' management Center (CMC) inaugurated Wednesday by French Minister Bernard Kouchner, fits well EU's Humanitarian and Security-Defence aims, revealed a gathering of the largest Group of MEPs (EPP) organised in Paris these days, to prepare the debate on French EU Presidency's priorities (July - December 2008), that President Nicolas Sarkozy will present next week in EU Parliament in Strasbourg.

        Due to face a large spectrum of Crises : from Humanitarian (f.ex. Natural Catastrophes, evacuation of Civilians or rapatriation of expats, populations exposed to Hunger and/or risky Sanitary conditions, etc), to various consequencies of Terrorist threats, Armed conflicts, or of Peace-keeping operations, etc, and joining Geopolitics with Diplomacy, CMC is able to deal with urgencies in real time anywhere in the world, by concentrating qualified Experts and impressive High-Tech equipment (i.e. Giant Computer Screens working in parallel, Visio-conferences, Satellite connections, etc).




        Kouchner stressed that "Humanitarian and Political considerations can co-exist in real practice, if each one respects its independence", and, speaking to EuroFora, underlined his intention to have special representatives in "Strategic" locations, creating a "Network", open particularly to European cooperation.


        - "We must fill the gap in Europe's Civilian and Military capacities", declared earlier at Matignon, French Prime Minister Francois Fillon, while EU Commissioners met with their counterparts among French Ministers.

        This point was at the focus of European People Party's "'Study Days" in Paris, from 2 to 4 July 2008, entitled  : "For a Safer Europe", with a central Debate on EU's Security and Defence policies, where EU Parliament's President, German MEP Hans Gert Poettering, French Minister of Defence Herve Morin, and the Chairman of EU's Defence Committee, MEP Karl von Vogaw, spoke before meeting with Sarkozy, Wednesday afternoon.

    - "We need specifically European systems, including, f.ex. Satellite networks, etc", stressed the experienced Chairman Karl von Vogaw, speaking after the meeting with President Sarkozy to European Journalists from EuroNews, EuroPolitique and EuroFora.
    - And there where "European forces are already gathered, (f.ex. in Cyprus, Balkans, Lebanon, etc), if new operations started, I'd prefer to see them under European command in Future", he added, in reply to questions on how to overcome problems raised by a 3rd Countries as Turkey.

    Vogaw presented earlier, at EPP's plenary, a comprehensive Report on EU's Security and Defence policy, with a strong High-Tech component (including Satellites, UAV, protected Telecoms, Strategic Air and Sea Transports, Space assets, etc), sharp references to Political will and Historic necessities, while also stressing that EU must overcome the divide between Civilian and Military research and activities, making "a close cooperation between Civilian and Military means" a "specific" mark of Europe.

    The experienced Top MEP, after helping to build the "EuroZone", as a long-time Chairman of EU Parliament's Economic Committee, has recently started to chair a brand new "Security and Defence Committee", aiming to build European Defence, as the 2nd task of his life, as he told earlier to EuroFora.


     The Committee, chaired by Vogaw, will hear, next week in Strasbourg an Experts' view about on the French EU Chairmanship's priorities in ESDP on Wednesday, before President Sarkozy's plenary debate, exceptionally on Thursday.


2009 EU Elections were won by Parties against Technocracy and Turkey's controversial EU bid, while the 1999-2004 Majority Abstention trend decelerated. What should be done in 2009-2014 ?


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