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Home arrow newsitems arrow Sarkozy for a New Era of Mediterranean Renaissance, key for EU-fast developing Africa links

Sarkozy for a New Era of Mediterranean Renaissance, key for EU-fast developing Africa links

Written by ACM
Wednesday, 31 August 2011
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    *Paris/Elysee Palace/Angelo Marcopolo/- Endorsing an "EuroFora"s Spring 2011 suggestion to EU's rotating Chair (See infra) to actively seek a "Renaissance" in EU's Mediterranean, after the Eastern European, neighborhoods, French President Nicolas Sarkozy launched a call for "a New Era" in Euro - African links, of growing Economic and Demographic importance, and stressed EU's emerging GeoPolitical Role in the surrounding area, including Middle East, and €uroZone's Monetary strength compared to other Currencies in the World, as well as EU's new leading role in NATO's  and/or other UN-sponsored operations, calling for renewed Global Cooperation to definitively overcome the Global Crisis
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      
        Artfuly pointing at a Strategy which dynamically combines GeoPolitical and Structural Values' aspects inside one and same vision for the Future, Sarkozy, in one among his best performances, with a fighting spirit among various difficulties and/or attempts to divert attention elsewhere, decisively focused at the essentials, speaking to an Annual gathering of French Ambassadors and Foreign Diplomats, at the eve of a crucial International Conference tomorrow here on Libya's future; urging them to "be Voluntary" and "Imaginative" enough in order to become able to face with "New Ideas" the Challenge of a "New World", emerging after a series of "Crisis", with "a New Governance".

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    Starting by African developments, Sarkozy observed from the outset that 2011 will certainly stay on Record for "Major Progres of Democracy" in the Continent, with "more than 20 important Elections at the South of Sahara",  the recognition of the electoral success of President Quattara in the Ivory Coast, the victory of President Conde in the 1st Democratic Election since the Independence of Guinea, and a return to the Constitutional Order in Nigeria, as well as Peace in Sudan. But the "unacceptable Somalian Crisis and the famine hitting Africa's Horn, Eastwards, "should  incite the whole World to do more in order to put and end to such Tragedies", 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        - North of Sahara, Young People started the "Arab Springs", from Tunisia, afterwards Egypt, they won, one by one, the Countries from Maghreb to Machrek", speaking "not against the West, or USA and Israel", but "asking for Freedom and Democracy, Respect and Dignity", Sarkozy observed. Meanwhile, "Moroco and Jordany proved that Real Reforms can have equally significant Results as Revolutions".

After the Ivory Coast, "when an out-going former President refused to recognize Electoral Results endorsed by the African Union and the UNO, and tried to keep power by Terror and Massacers", also in Libya, "when People asking for Liberty were threatened to be crashed under fire from Canons, Tanks and Gaddafi's Airplanes", France made a "decisive"; but "Politicaly and Moraly Just choice", "supported by the Arab Ligue and our African Union partners", on the basis of an Explicit Mandate by UNO's Security Council", which marked a progress in International Law respect, by concretely materializing, for the 1st time in History on 2011, with acts, not only words, the 2005 Principle of the Responsibility to Protect" "populations martyrized by their own leaders", and, also for the 1st time, "Unanimously", UNO's SC brought to the International Criminal Court the Crimes of Libyan former leaders", he added.

- But,"What about the Massacers in Syria ?". The Syrian President" Bashar Assad, "already committed irreversible" crimes. "Dama's Regime shouldn't make the Error to believe that it might be protected from its own People", Even if "I regret the fact that UNO's Security Council doesn't always undertake its Responsibilities vis a vis the Syrian Tragedy", nevertheless, "together with our Partners, we shall do Everything Legaly possible for the Syrian People's Aspirations for Liberty and Democracy to Triumph", "But inside the UNO's framework, i.e., it's up to us to fight for a Consensus" in the UN SC, he invited.

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- In fact, "only People make History, and can take their Destiny in their Hands, without anyone being able to anticipate, even less provoke from far away or trigger their Movement towards Freedoms and Democracy, even if it might be foreseen. But there is No "Arab Exception" which might have Condemned those People to Dictatorship !" Advancing Today well beyond Past Risks to be accused of "Neo-Colonialism", if you did too much, or, on the contrary, of "Guilty Indiference", if you didn't act enough, and/or delayed, what is "New", now, is that the "Principles on which is based our New Policy", express a "will to resolutely accompagny People's Movement towards Democracy", the French President stressed.

The New trend cuts short with a policy of the Past which deyfied "Stability"at any price, putting us (EU) in Contradiction with the (Democracy and Human Rights') Values that we should promote"; Sarkozy pointed out.

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=> This is the Meaning of our Initiatives with the "Deauville Partnership launched by the G-8 Summit last May 2011 (See "EuroFora"s NewsReports from the spot), and in the framework of the EU, the G8/G20 Chairman observed.


Because the "Democratic Earthquake" which has recently shaken authoritarian regimes in the Mediterranean, even if it has an equally important Historic significance as the Berlin Wall's Fall (in Eastern Europe), nevertheless, might have a more complicated aftermath, because of a "Threefold Difference" :

- A Demographic Difference, with Youth representing 2/3 of the People, bringing each year Millions of Young People, often with several Diplomas, to the Labor Market, etc..

- An Ideological difference, where what is at stake is to prove that Democracy is not contrary to Islam, while it was incompatible with Marxism.

- And an Organisational difference, because the way was "obvious" for the former Central-Eastern European Countries, which had just to Integrate themselves inside an Enlarged EU, while, on the contrary, at the other side of the Mediterranean Sea, it's important to develop a Partnership, respectful of these States' Independence and Sovereignity, as that recenty proposed at the May 2011 Deauville G8 Summit of Heads of State/Government, which took Long-term Commitments proposing 40 Billions $ to Tunisia and Egypt between 2011 and 2013, as well as BERD's unique Expertise (and Loans), etc (See "EuroFora"s NewsReports from Deauville's G8 Summit).

Since that G8 Summit, (8-11/8/2011), two more Countries joined the Deauville's Partnership", Moroco and Jordany, while, now, If New Libya would like to join, it will be very Welcome", he added

 

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+ Because, at the same time, in parallel,  there is also an overal "Progress in Development in Africa : "For 15 Years, African Economies experience a Growth superior to + 5% annualy", and, during the present Decade (2001-2010), 6 out of 10 Economies (i.e. 60%) in the World which experienced the Biggest Growth Rate, were African", while the continent's Population will Double before 2050, so that "Africa will become more populated than China !".

=> "Africa is Booming and becoming the Youth of the World", he concluded.

- "All this makes of Africa's Economic Boost a Priority for Europe, for whose Economy, Africa's Proximity is a Chance", the French President pointed out.

  - "EU's and Africa's Destinies are interwoven together", Sarkozy stressed, launching a call for an "Equilibrated and Modern Partnership", with full "Transparency" on all Agreements, even on Defense, as he promissed.

 => F.ex. "Tomorrow, when we'll welcome here, at Elysee palace, the New Authorities of Tripoli (Libya), together with all represented Countries (including China and Russia), the UNO, the Arab Ligue, the African Union, etc., we shall turn the page of the (former Gaddafià Dictature and of Clashes, to open a New Era of Cooperation with Democratic Libya", he anounced.
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        + In extension, the Middle East issue seriously concerns Europe, which should be placed at the Heart of the Peace process, together with the indispensable USA, but not left aside, in order for it to succeed, particularly now, when it woud be unacceptable if, even at the moment of the "Arab Spring" movement towards Democracy, some might "freeze" the Middle East !            

=> The "Mediterranean Sea is first of all a European affair, before becoming also a US affair", Sarkozy stressed in an overall GeoPolitical conclusion, based on an obvious GeoPoliical and Historic/Cultural vision, while reminding also his well-known reputation as "America's Friend".

>>> By adapting and relaunching innovative institutional Tools such as "the Union for the Mediterranean" (founded by the EU and 3rd Mediterranean Countries' Heads of State/Government in a July 2008 Summit in Paris, during the French EU Presidency : See "EuroFora" co-founder's NewsReports at "TCW" from the spot), can become "the Motor for a Mediterranean Renaissance"; Sarkozy highlighted.
    ----------------------------------------------
    - As for far away Afghanistan, he reminded that the implication of French forces was due to a decision taken many years ago by Mr Jospin (former Socialist Prime Minister) and Mr Chirac (former ChristianDemocrat President, of the same party with Sarkozy, in fact towards the end of his mandate), but refused a precipitated withdrawal, because of Security concerns today, prefering an orderly "Tranfert" of all power to the regular Afghan Authorities, "according to a determined Timetable, and observing that "Taliban don't have, no more, the means for Military actions, but are obliged to abuse of sly, criminal Terrorism, aggressing blindly anybody".
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Meanwhile, EU plays a greater role inside NATO, as the example of an operation led by France and the UK clearly indicated in Libya, he observed, comparing today's action to protect dissident Libyan People, with contrary Past moments of dramatic EU inaction, almost totally replaced by USA Military, as f.ex. in the former Yugoslavia war, particularly in Bosnia, etc.

However, Sarkozy observed that it's mainly 2 EU Countries, France and the UK, who currently invest 2/3 of European funds for Defense, warning all EU Countries, that Europe needs to muscle its Capabilities, if it wants to really play a political role proportional to its important Economic Power in the World.
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 - "Libyan Clashes brought the better Reply to the Prophets of "Schock of Civilisatons and Religions : In fact, side by side, Arab Forces, European and North American, helped a martyrized People to realize its Aspirations for Freedom", Sarkozy rightfully stressed.

    In the case of Libya, "those who anounced Negative Reactions from the Arab World", on the contrary, saw "the United Arab Emirates, Quatar and Jordany, participate to the Coalitions' operations right from the start", while, "our Libyan Friends were asking every day more action", he reminded ...

By the way, in the Future, the manner in which 3rd Mediterranean Countries a.o. will protect their own ancestral Christian Minorities, will be a "Mark" measuring Democracy's importance in each Country concerned, the French President concluded.

(../..)
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 NDLR: Meanwhile, it's topicaly interesting to note that the very same Logic which underlies Sarkozy's main observations (See supra) can also be found in a questions-reply exchange between "EuroFora" and EU's rotating Chairmanship, during a Press Conference at EU Parliament, back in Strasbourg at the beginning of Spring 2011, as far as it concerns, precisely, the integration of the recent 3rd Mediterranean Countries' recent developments and EU's Neighborhood policy :

Hungarian EU Minister Nemeth, then chairing the EU Council, had initially described the situation as follows :

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<<To "Highlight Key elements of the Debate :"

"EU's Southern Neighbourhood policy is Now facing Serious Challenges : We now see compeletely New Tendencies, that we've never seen in the Past. We are now seing new symptoms of Democratic Transition. We have now to deal with this so-called "Arabic Spring"".

=> Therefore, "we (EU) need to come up with a New Concept, a completely New Concept, that is able to provide a Response to very Differend and specific Situations :

- "I mentioned 3 Countries, but, of course, I could mention 2 more where there is a(n EU) Military presence based on a UN Mandate. The EU, with the support of its Member States, is pursuing this.

I could also mention Other States, where the Transition Process has already started.  And here, the Targets are Differend :   Constitutional Monarchies, or Republics, etc. so that the Final Goals of these Countries are differend. So  now see also some Transitional processes that are quite significant : Such as in Egypt, Tunisia, etc. But we could also mention Morocco.

So I think (that) we have a lot on our plate.... Although we postponed the Eastern Partnership Summit, we now have to use our Time very well,  to encompash all proposals related to (EU) Neighbourhood policy, and to integrate them into a New Neighborhood policy, which could deal with both Areas : Southern and Easterrn Regions".

Unless we are able to do this, we (EU) loose Credibility, our Neighbourhood and Partnership policy loses credibility,  and we also lose Support. I think that, looking to the past Decades, we can that whenever the EU is not unified, we lose credibility, Neighbour in our Neighbour's eyes.

Now, our Southern and Eastern Neighbours are looking upon us, and I think they deserve a Unified Policy, a credible, Robust Neighbourhood policy.

A policy that is built on all the Tools that are available to us : So I think, a sound Analysis should be reflected in this New Neghbourhood policy that we really examine our House in order too.

So, as regards the 3 Countries (See supra), there is one thing I'd like to emphasize, on behalf of Baroness Ashton, and that's the following :

- We (EU) do not accept any form of Violence, We refuse to accept any form of Violence, and this is a Starting point of our (EU's) policy. So, Violence is completely Unacceptable. That is our Starting point.

- Second : These Countries are Differend, very differend from one another. And, although these Dictatorships covered on the face their differencies, now we'll see that it's (coming ?) into the surface, and we hope to welcome this Diversity. We hope to see this in Societies. We think that it's important for this Diversity to come forward, and also to be shown in the Decision-making : It can't be any Democracy without an internal Dialogue, and that's our 2nd Principle : When representatives of very Differend Opinions have to engage in Dialogue.

+ And the 3rd one : This is an Irreversible process. So, now, Changes have started in the Arab World, (and) we (EU) hope that these Changes will lead to Democratic Systems. We need to keep up these processes. We need to give them a Boost.

And, let me remark, just in practice ; Central and Eastern EU Countries have valuable Experience in this field, and they would likehese Countries concerned. So, the main thing is that we shouldN't let this process Stop !

But we (EU) are not the Owners of theses processes, the NATO or the EU : We are just Facilitators. These Countries own the Transition Processes. We (EU) provide the Support. >>
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Question  : East - South  : too much Differencies, between the South and the Eastern neihbours, i order to have a Unified Approach. Isn't this Difference too Big ?

Nemeth : ... - Of course there are big Differncies between our Neighbours?But, I have to emphasize, that there are Differncies, significant Differences, within our Southern Neighbourhood.

The Eastern and the Southern Dimensions may be treated in a Unified distance,  But this Unified Approach is about the EU : (I.e.) That We have an Environment that will determine our Future.

Are we able to look towards our Outside Environment ? Now, Rightaway we (EU) have two Libers (Southern and Eastern): If we had a Northern Neighbourhood we'd consider it. But now it's the Atlantic Ocean. So, we need to Focus on our Environment, on our Vicinity, and that's what Neighbourhood Policy is about.

And, of course, our Eastern Neighbourhood policy will have its Particularities, as Compared to the Souhern Neighbourhood : F.ex. we don't have a 80% illiteracy, and we don't have to deal with that, we don't have to be prepared for that in the Eastern policy.

But, at the same time, there are points of contacts on the Development policy, Trade, etc. But also there will be another range of efforts towards the Rule of Law, and that will have to be reflected on. And we also have to focus on Energy partnersship, that used to be part of the Southern partnership, but will have to be reflected also to our Eastern policy.

So, when we speak about Armenia, Georgia and Azerbaidzan, etc., the Eastern and Southern policies will overlap.

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+ Turkey, is an important factor. It's Difficut to Distinguish, but, Is it an interesting factor towards the Caucasian Region, or more and more under the Southern sphere of influence ?

So, I think, we have to put an End to the Mechanical Separation between the East and the South.  Instead, the EU has to be "open" towards its outside Environment, in our own, best interests. The only Risks we face in these Regions are the Crises around the EU. ----------------

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 - In our Question, "EuroFora" reminded that Nemeth "represents, here (at EU Parliament), both the Hungarian EU Presidency and (EU's High Representative on External Action) Cathy Ashton :

- "You spoke about an interesting General Concept, the Need to find something that will respect the Diversity, but also a Coherence between the Eastern and the Southern (EU) Neighbourhood policy.

- Do you think that one among the words which might be useful, with a Positive projection, is that this might become, a little-bit, a kind of "RENAISSANCE" ?  

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Because we had also an Arab Civilisation in the Past, (destroyed later by the Ottoman-Turc Military Invasion and Occupation), which (had) helped to keep some kind of Classic European Civilisation, i.e. Greco-Roman, f.ex. by Texts in Alexandria, etc.,

- And, at the same moment, during that period, the Eastern part of Europe was very much Closer than later-on, Europe was more United, including your own country (Hungary), and others, that are far away (f.ex. Russia, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, etc), than it was after, during the (subsequent) Cold-War period"; "EuroFora" reminded.
 
 
In this direction, don't you think that the various Minorities, Religious (f.ex. various traditional Christian communities) and others, who are Historically living there, who might be themselves (also) Arabs or others, instead of being considered as something coming from the Exterior, (on the contrary), they might be helpful to "Bridge", in the Future, if they integrate inside Pluralist Democracies, as you said, (f.ex.) in Egypt, Syria, etc. and hopefully also other Countries (in the Future), and the European Union, in the Future".

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- "Not easy questions, but very Interesting", spontaneously reacted the EU President-in-office.

"Concerning your 2nd Question, I find it very Interesting", the EU President-in-office observed in reply to "EuroFora"'s suggestion and interrogation (See supra).  

- "I'm sure that, after the Fall of the Homogenizing, Authoritarian Rule, in the Arab World, (a) Colourful Patchwork of Identities is going to be reflected" in the Mediterranean area, Minister Nemeth stressed from he outset.

- "And I hope that these Countries will be able to avoid the Danger of Sectarianism, which is an inherent Risk for the Region : Just look at the Danger of the Division inside Libya, the Territorial type of Division, or you can Identify a very similar Challenge in Yemen in that respect as well. But, if we don't just look at these Questions from a Territorial aspect, we can look at the Religious Challenge of Sectarianism : (f.ex.) Christianity versus Muslims, (etc), in Countries like Lebanon or Syria, or even Egypt. Or just the differend Wings of the Muslims, (f.ex. Shiites, Sunites, etc), also in Syria or in Bahrein or other Countries (f.ex. Iraq, Iran etc).

- "So, I'm sure (that) some kind of Pluralistic Democratic Model is needed, and Not any more the Homogenizing, (traditional) .. type of Centralized Democracy, but (preferably) that Tendency which is reflected in the Recent developments of, let's say, (f.ex.), British Democracy, with these Devolutions to Welsh and Scotland, I could also mention Spain,  or Italy, Post-War developments, (etc). But this is a very Sensitive and Theoretical question at this stage".

- "We (EU) hope that the Transition is going to be towards Democracy. Be it Constitutional Democracy, or Republican type of Democracy, and we (EU) are very much encouraged by the developments of the Arab Spring. For us (Hungary, Poland, etc), the Central European Countries, it reminds the developments in 1989-1990, and that's another Source of Solidarity from our side, towards these Countries", the Hungarian EU President-in-office concluded.

***

(NDLR : Draft News, as already sent
earlier to "EuroFora"s Subscribers/Donors. Watch out for a more Complete and Accurate, Final Version asap.)

***




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(Opinion).

 In Democracy, the forthcoming choices for EU's Top Jobs, as the New EU Parliament's President, new EU Commission's President (+ probably EU Council's President, EU Foreign Minister, etc) should be made according to EU Citizens' Votes in June 7, 2009 European Elections, and main EU Governments' strategic policies.

At the heart of the biggest EU Countries, in France and Germany, EU Citizens clearly voted for a renovated, non-technocratic but Political Europe based on Values, declared explicitly incompatible with Turkey's controversial EU bid.

This main choice was also supported in several other small or medium EU Countries, such as Austria (cf. promise of a Referendum), Spain (cf. EPP program's reservations vis a vis Enlargment), etc., while EPP Parties won also in Poland, Hungary, Cyprus, etc.

In other Countries, whenever Governing coalitions didn't make these choices or eluded them, continuing to let a Turkish lobby push for its entry into the EU, they paid a high price, and risked to damage Europe, by obliging EU Citizens to massively vote for euro-Sceptics whenever they were the only ones to offer a possibility to promise  real change and oppose Turkey's demand to enter into the EU :

It's for this obvious reason that British UKIP (IndDem) succeeded now (after many statements against Turkey's EU bid) to become Great Britain's 2nd Party, unexpectedly growing bigger even than the Governing Labour Party, as well as the Liberal party  ! Facts prove that it's not an isolated phenomenon : A similar development occured in the Netherlands, where Geert Wilders "Party for Freedom" (PVV) became also the 2nd biggest in the country, (after EPP), boosting the chances of a politician who had withdrawn in 2004 from an older party "because he didn't agree with their position on Turkey". And in several other EU Member Countries, even previously small parties which now focused on a struggle against Turkey's controversial demand to enter in the EU, won much more or even doubled the number of their MEPs (fex. Bulgaria, Hungary, Greece, etc).

On the contrary, whenever Socialist and oher parties were explicitly or implicitly for Turkey's controversial EU bid, they obviously lost Citizens' votes and fell down to an unprecedented low.

In consequence, EU Citizens clearly revealed their main political choices, in one way or another : They voted to change for less Bureaucracy, but more Politics and Values in a Europe really open to EU Citizens, but without Turkey's controversial EU bid.

Recent political developments are obviously different from the old political landscape which existed in the Past of 1999-2004, when Socialists based on Turkish 1% vote governed undisputed not only in Germany, but also in the UK, Greece and elsewhere, France followed old policies decided when it had been divided by "cohabitation", before the 3 "NO" to EU  Referenda since May 2005, before Merkel, before Sarkozy, etc.... before the surprises of 7 June 2009 new EU Elections.

If the current candidates to the Top EU jobs promise and guarantee to respect People's democratic choices, OK.

Otherwise, Europe must find new candidates, really motivated and able to implement these democratic choices of the People.

The beginning of crucial, final Decisions are scheduled for the 1st EU Parliament's plenary session in Strasbourg, in the middle of July, and they could be completed towards the October session, when Lisbon Treaty's fate will have been fixed.


See relevant Facts also at : http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/2009electionsandturkey.html
http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/daulelections.html
http://www.eurofora.net/brief/brief/euroelectionresult.html

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