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Haupt arrow newsitems arrow Strasbourg Region Prefect Marx to EF on European University: Wait FrancoGerman Summit+TransBorder c.

Strasbourg Region Prefect Marx to EF on European University: Wait FrancoGerman Summit+TransBorder c.

Geschrieben von ACM
Friday, 02 February 2018
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*Strasbourg/Pefectoral Palace/Angelo Marcopolo/- Replying to an "Eurofora"s Question, during his Press Conference for the New Year 2018, the Prefect of Strasbourg's "Great East" new big Region, Jean-Claude Marx, pointed, concerning a recent query for the eventual Creation of a European University here, at relevant Decisions that might, perhaps, be taken during a forthcoming Franco-German Summit, focused on TransBorder Cooperation and Integration at EU's core, which is expected during the 1st Semester of 2018.

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The creation of a European University was strongly Supported recently by the New President of Strasbourg's University, Professor Michel Deneken, while speaking with Journalists, including "Eurofora", at an Annual Event organized Previously this Week, in the Historic University Palace by the City's Press Club.


strasbourg_universitys_president_michel_deneken__agg_press_club_annual_2018_event_university_palace_eurofora_400


+ In addition, Strasbourg University's President told "Eurofora" that he was Interested to a Parallel Project, recently presented by the New CoE Assembly's President Michele Nicholetti, to establish PanEuropean Inter-University Networks for Studies and Research on COE's Human Rights, Democracy and Rule of Law-related Conventions (including BioEthics, etc : Comp. relevant statement by PACE President Nicoletti to "Eurofora" at ..), and looked forward to Meeting with him asap.

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minister_vidal_visits_deneken_dna

 (Minister Vidal + University President Deneken - DNA)


Deneken had just met, Earlier that Same Day (Monday Morning/Noon), with the New French Minister for Education, Universities and Scientific Research, Mrs Frederique Vidal, who discussed, during her visit, mainly Issues related to "Innovation Campus" and "Excellence" projects, funded by the National Government.

 education_minister_fvidal_in_strasbourg_ab_photo_400
(Minister Vidal at UniStra - AB's Photo)
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In Recent Years, (since 2016), German, French and Swiss Universities of the "Superior Rhine" river TransBorder "Euro-Region", have Established Together a Pioneer "European Campus", which, as its President, Professor Hans-Jochen Schiewer, Dean of nearby Freiburg University (Germany), replied to an "Eurofora"s Question mainly by stressing that this was a 1st Step, "Test" and Example towards concrete Integration at EU's Core.


But the then President of Strasbourg's University in France, Alain Beretz, (currently Director of Innovation/Research at the Education Ministry), had made it clear to "Eurofora" that the move concerned, at least for the Time being, much more the creation of "Links between Infrastructures" for Higher Education and/or Research between the adjacent Border Regions of the 3 Countries, including the possibility to get National or EU Funds for Joint Research Projects, etc.


(Comp. also EU Commissioner for Science, Research and Innovation, Carlos Moedas' Statements to "Eurofora", at that occasion : http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/eusciencecomissioneronchinaandeuuniversitiesgroup.html + ...).


However, already, World-Famous Sismology Professor Michel Granet, former Vice-President for Research at Strasbourg's University and Director of the Institute on Earth's Physics, had agreed with "Eurofora", in the Context of a Press Conference on his Report for the Scientific Research Policy in Strasbourg's Region Alsace, prepared at the request of the French National Government, as Early as since the End of 2012, that a Logical and desirable Horizon for the foreseable Future would be, indeed, the progressive Creation of a Franco-Germano-Swiss University, due to evolve also at a Wider EU scope. And he observed that, among others, it's also Strasbourg's Region which appeared interested in such a possibility, (particularly on "lato sensu" Earth/Environment Science/Technologies, including Law/Politics/Economy, Philosophy/Religion, etc, according to an original Definition, used since 2005 by the European Foundation of Science, HeadQuartered in Strasbourg).


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=> - Thus, during Today's Press Conference's Question Time, "Eurofora" asked Prefect Jean-Claude Marx, what he thought about such various, but converging, Thoughts to Advance, from a "Euro-Campus", towards the eventual Creation of a "European University" in Strasbourg, naturally Based mainly on Franco-German Cooperation, in the foreseable Future.

 

And, by the way, What were the current Prospects for the Further Development of the Recently Established "Euro-Campus", initially between French-German-Swiss Regions of the "Superior Rhine", (which, naturally, might usefully serve as an important 1st Step towards the above-mentioned, Deeper and Wider Idea : Comp. Supra).

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 - Prefect Marx, in his Reply to this prospective Question by "Eurofora", significantly, did Not Deny such an eventual possibility in he foreseable Future, at least not a priori.


 - "Your Question is obviously Related mainly with the Cooperation between Neighbouring Countries, and particularly with the TransBorder Cooperation among adjacent Regions, observed in substance the Prefect of Strasbourg's New and much Bigger than in the Past, "Great East" Region : I.e. "the Only Area in Europe to have a Quadrilateral Border", (Nowadays, Both with Germany and Switzerland, as well as with Luxembourg and Belgium, thus Bringing Together 5 core European Countries, including France), as stresses an official Press File, (to which pointed Marx at this occasion).


 + Adding that this Fact gives to Strasbourg's new Region "a Vocation to become a Laboratory for European Territorial Cooperation, But Alsoo a Model of Regional Integration", (i.e. with Deeper Links).


-  Among the essentual issues on which such a TransBorder Cooperation can evolve, "is, indeed, included the Higher Education", (i.e. Universities), Prefect Marx, carefully but positively observed in Reply to "Eurofora"s above-mentioned Question.


 - He also revealed that, during the recent 3 Visits of new French President Macron in Strasbourg's Region, where he had several Contacts, including, particularly, by meeting the New German President Steinmeier, near Basel, in the framework of an Event for the Commemoration of the 100th Anniversary since the 1st World War, with the Symbolic and Practical Creation of a Joint, Franco-German History Museum, for the 1st Time, (See: ..., + Comp.: ..., etc), issues related to Higher Education were discussed.


 - "Such a Trans-Border Cooperation on Universities can take Various Forms", including, f.ex., particularly "in the Development of Language-learning", in German and French, for which, there is a Strong and Widely-shared Wish to Boost it further, he added, in Practical terms.


 - However, naturally, "there are also Many other interesting Areas", for Higher Education Cooperation/Integration, Prefect Marx observed.


 - In this regard, "I refer you to the Franco-German Summit, which has been just anounced for the 1st Semester of 2018", he told "Eufofora" on the above-mentioned issue.


- Because, it seems "Due to be Largely Focused on TransBorder Cooperation", he revealed.


 - As things stand Today, "I think that this is the Best Way to Address Your Question", (even if it doesn't yet give a direct, full and explicit reply, for the Time being), Prefect Marx added in fine, diplomatically, but with openess...


 - Especially when it concerns certain very "Advanced Issues", as that which you raised, for which it's obviously necessary to have the Time to Examine and Discuss seriously, before giving a more concrete and profound Reply, which might not yet be feasible to give immediately Nowadays, he concluded, as far as "Eurofora"s above-mentioned Question is concerned, i.e. (once again) leaving the Future Open.


 In the Press File handed Today to Journalists, including "Eurofora", is also reminded the Fact that, the Pre-Existing situation on TransBorder Cooperation for Strasbourg's New and much Larger "Great East" Region, extends in "2 Areas" : One around the "Big Region", bringing Together France, Luxembourg, Germany and Belgium, (chaired on 2018 by Luxembourg), and anOther around the "Superior Rhine (OberRhein)", which brings Together, France, Germany and Switzerland, (currently Chaired by Germany for 2018).


+ Meanwhile, Prefect Jean-Claude Marx also Ensured that, currently, the still on-going work to Prepare the New, 3 Years-Long : "2018-2020", Agreement between the French State and Strasbourg's Euro-Metropole, as Headquarters for European/PanEuropean Institutions, is "well Advanced" and due to be Concluded "during 2018's First Quarter", (i.e. until the End of March).  


Already in the Previous one, concerning the Period of 2015-2017, which has just Concluded, the "Development of "Euro-Campus" at University level, was clearly included, (Together with the traditional and wider "Strengthening of Strasbourg Region's "European Cultural Appeal").

strasbourgs_prefectoral_palace__interior_eurofora_400 

 

(../..)

 



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Swedish Foreign Minister, Carl Bildt, speaking  to "EuroFora", denied rumors on Turkey's attempts to avoid an EU check of its obligations on Cyprus on December 2009 by blackmailing Nicosia to either accept any deal with intransigeant Turkish claims contrary to EU values on the island's political issue, or face threats against the territorial integriy of the EU island, semi-occupied by Ankara's army.

On the contrary, the incoming EU President-in-office, speaking exclusively to "EuroFora", promissed that he will act for EU Council's decisions on December 2009 assessment of Turkey's commitments on Cyprus to be kept.


    Bildt was asked to react to Cyprus' President Christofias' denunciation, earlier this week, that some want to exert "pressure" on Cyprus in order for Turkey to escape from its obligations.

    Avoiding to mention any precise Deadline, Bildt, however, warned about "Consequences" in case of "failure" to reunite Cyprus, but without saying whose responsibility an eventual deadlock might be.  

 Asked by "EuroFora" if there is a risk for "Turkey's commitments to "be forgotten or downgraded", "despite crystal-clear EU Council decisions and EU Parliament's latest Resolution on the assessment to make at the end of this year on Turkey's obligations", according to rumours that, instead of pressing Turkey, on the contrary, there might be "pressure on Cyprus", even "blackmail", as Media reported and President Christofias denounced this week, Bildt denied :

- "No ! ", he clearly replied.


- On the contrary, invited by "EuroFora", to "reassure that the Swedish EU Presidency (7-12/2009) will keep a fair stance, based on principles",  Bildt promised that "we (Swedish EU Presidency) will be very clear on all of the decisions taken by the (EU) Council".

He added, however, that "we have very numerous decisions that have been taken" by EU Council, as if he warned, also, on something else.

- "'I am not aware of any sort of statements coming out today''", Bildt started to say, on our reference to Cyprus' President Christofias" denunciation of Turkish lobby's manoeuvers this week, replying earlier to 'another"EuroFora"'s question during a Press Conference at EU Parliament in Strasbourg.


 - '"I know the issues that you' are concerned with'", he added, remembering  the statements he gave us when Sweden was chairing the PanEuropean CoE on 2008.

- "But, obviously, .. I think that Cyprus' Peace negotiations are extremenly important".

- And "'I think that we are at a unique moment in History, in the sens that both (Cyprus') President Christofias and Mr. Talat (the Turkish Cypriot leader), are personally convinced of the need to overcome the division".

 - "It's 20 Years since the fall of Berlin Wal, but we still have a Capital in Europe (Nicosia) that's divided". ,

- 'I don't that we should loose any time in overcoming that"..

 - ''We should be aware of the fact that success will bring great benefits, but failure, will also have major consequences. There will not be Status Quo' " It's a question of seeking a solution, or entering another situation, which is somewhat difficult to see exactly how that could evolve", he warned.

- "That being said, this is a negotiation for Cyprus itself", Bildt admitted.

 - ''We (EU) can support, the (EU) Commission primarily, be technically helpful, and then, of course, there is a specific role for the UN, when it comes to the Cyprus' situation".  

- "At least so far. It might not be for ever'. Certainly not for ever, but for this period of time", Bildt added, skiping now any reference to concrete threats on UNO's Peace keeping force in face of more than 40.000 Ankara's soldiers, contrary to some Press claims, (See previous NewsReports).


     Replying to another "EuroFora"'s Question,  if anyone might attempt to "impose a Deadline for the conclusion" of Cyprus' Talks on December 2009, Bildt avoided to speak of any precise Time-frame, and indirectly evoked the fact that  35 Years of Turkish Invasion/Occupation obviously durated too long :

'- "If I was from Cyprus, I would say that the Deadline was Yesterday ! '",
Bildt concluded.

Cyprus' Government Spokesman, Stephanou, reportedly pointed out that "a settlement is possible on December if Turkey changes its stance", accepting a solution for the reunification of the island based on UNO resolutiona and EU principles.

imag0082_400

Earlier, EU Chair, Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeld, highlighted an "historic opportunity" to "re-Unite" Cyprus according to EU's "basic Values"' (i.e. Human Rights) and 'Rules'", in a last-minute change of his draft speech to EU Parliament in Strasbourg.

    The initial Draft spoke only about "healing" the island.

    Significantly, Reinfeldt linked Cyprus' reunification with Turkey's obligations to respect EU's "Values" and "follow" EU's "common Rules" :

    - What is "called Membership Negotiations" should lead, "at- the end of the day", into "sharing a set of common Basic Values (i.e. Human Rights, Democracy, etc), and following common Rules", stressed Reinfeld from the outset.
    
    - "This is something that those on the Outside (of the EU), are now  contemplating", up "to Ankara", for "a solution" on "Cyprus", observed the EU Chairman, immediately afterwards..  

    - "Both sides of Cyprus have been granted a historic opportunity to together reach an agreement on a solution to re-Unite the island, that has been divided for far too long", said Reinfeldt, modifying his draft text.


-  "The Swedish Presidency will act ...in accordance with Commitments EU has made, on the basis of Criteria that apply", "as a Honest Broker", he promised.    

- "To those on the inside (of the EU), allowing the membership process to become an opportunity to solve protracted disputes, can be tempting", he added.


    "In such cases, we must find solutions that can benefit both sides, and open up a way forward. Otherwise, it would jeopardize the progress we have made towards EU integration", Reinfeldt said.

***

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