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Home arrow newsitems arrow Top MEP Durand to EF: Citizens role Before EU Decision: Major Issue in Conference on Europe's Future

Top MEP Durand to EF: Citizens role Before EU Decision: Major Issue in Conference on Europe's Future

Pisac ACM
10. 12. 2020.

 

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 *Strasbourg/Angelo Marcopolo/- "Eurofora"'s long-standing Project for prior Dialogue with Citizens in EU Decision-Making process, "is an Absolutely Major Issue, about Contemporary Democratic developments", in "a main Avenue where we (EU Must Asdvance", stressed Top French MEP Pascal Durand, (Liberal/"Renew"), co-Author of EU Parliament's Resolution and Negociator on the Conference on Europe's Future, in Reply to Our Questions Yesterday, (See Infra).

"Eurofora" was Invited by the "European Movement/Alsace", and the "Union of European Federalists", to a Video-Debate with Top MEP Durand on EU's landmark, 2 Years-long, "Conference on the Future of Europe",  which may Start on 2021.

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- rWe had already spoken on that together, in the recent Past, and "Eurofora" Published about it (See: http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/mepdurandeuroforaonfutureconf.html, etc). Thank you for Adopting Nowadays at least 1 among our Suggestions, that we had discussed then : I.e. to Associate EU Citizens' Legislative Initiative with MEPs' own Moves : (See Infra). We Hope that You shall Succeed to Convince, rather : Stimulate, many of your Collegues (MEPs), since, in fact, it's Their own Interest to Open such New Possibilities of Cooperation, which woud practicaly give to EU Parliament a much-needed Legislative Initiative, (as it is the case in All Other Parliaments), we reminded.

- But,  "What do you think at Present, how do you feel things are Now, and what Future Perspectives may exist :  - Is there any real Chance Nowadays, big or small, to Find a Way to Associate EU Citizens to the Decision-Making process of EU Institutions, (by using  also the New Communication means, which Facilitate Consultations, not only of a Dozen, but of many Thousands of People, as well as previous Dialogue and Cooperation, as you observed too), or Not ?", "Eurofora" asked Durand. This might take Any adequate Form, (f.ex. "Citizens' Conventions", "Great Debate", "Referendum on Dialogue", or a "Synthesis" of that, if not something Different : People's creative Imagination is great."..

+ And, "by the way, (even if it might be the Hardest), When do you think that EU's Conference on the Future of Europe might Start ?", we asked Durand, with a smile..

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- "We'd need a "Crystal Ball", he spontaneously joked about "Eurofora"s 2nd Question on the Timing of relevant mega-Events...

>>> "On the ways  to Associate EU  Citizens Before Decisions are taken, I think that it's an Absolutely Major Issue, about Contemporary Democratic developments !", positively Welcomed Durand "Eurofora"s 1st and Main Question, (Comp. Supra).

- In this regard, it seems that Ireland, Portugal (current EU-Chair), France (future EU chair), with "Citizens' Conventions", etc., Tried to do something there, he observed. But he appeared Critical vis a vis the "Socialist" Minister for EU Affairs in Germany, (whom, he had reportedly met earlier, but withOut seeing Anything coming out of it, as he regretted now [+UPDATE: However, ChristianDemocrat/EPP German Chancelor Angie Merkel, and EPP MEPs' President, Manfred Weber, (who had Already picked "Eurofora"s project as a Basic Light-motif of his Victorious EU Elections' Campain, back on 2019 : See, inter alia, f.ex. also : http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/weberreturnsoneuroforaproject.html + .http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/topeucandidateweberoneuroforaproject.html, etc) ,both German, Later produced an Interesting and comprehensive Collective Work on the forthcoming EU's Conference on the Future of Europe : See ..., etc]).

- "I think that, in order to Reply to Your ("Eurofora""s) Question, we must Find a Way to Set up a Permanent EU Citizens' "Block"", Durand suggested, in Practical terms.

- "So that EU Parliament would be able to Consult that Citizens' Block Before Decisions are taken. Almost as the EU Commission launches an Impact Assesment for a New Measure. Similarly, the EU Parliament would be Equiped with a Citizens' College, that it could Consult for any Major Decision. This should have a Secretariat, Experts, etc. That's very Important".

[NDLR : "Eurofora" Welcomes Durand's Interest, But observes that, for our Project, Previous Dialogue before an EU Decision should become a Democratic Right of all Affected EU Citizens, using New Communication Technologies to Simplify and Secure links, and Not a Privilege practicaly used Only by a Specimen of Individuals, chosen according to Controversial Criteria. This obviously is a point which needs special Attention to settle appropriately].

- "I have No Problem with the fact that it takes place Before Decisions. At any case, EU Parliament Must be <<DeBunckerized>> and made more Accountable. (Even if we : MEPs are already More Accountable than the EU Council, since we Respond  at a European Level, while the EU Council depends on National Instances", he pointed out.  

- "In fact, it's also a Financial Isssue : F.ex., in order to Organize Citizens' Conventions during the Week-Ends, and/or Engage UnEmployed People, Youngsters, Retired, etc., you have to find the Means for  (Financial) Compensation", he advised, Urging "for a real Study on Participatoy Democracy", etc. "i.e. we don't limit that only into Consulting them, at an exceptional occasion, But, on the Contrary, we Associate them to the (EU) Decision-Making" permanently.

-  As for EU Citizens themselves, "they would see that, in fact, Public Decision-making is, often, more Complicated than many thought : F.ex., when it practicaly takes to put Thousands of People into UnEmployment, then, you Hesitate and Think seriously before putting the Pencil on paper"..., he highlighted. "It's easy to say : - 'Let's Throw them  Out all !", But, when you realize, f.ex., that, Behind them, it's also a lot of Families who are affected, then, it suddenly becomes much more Complicated"..., Durand pointed out.

+ "Concerning the EU "Citizens' Initiative", (Cf. "Eurofora"'s original Suggestion, earlier : Comp. Supra), -"Yes : It's an Important Advance of the Lisbon Treaty", and concerns more than "a Million of People" : "So, it Must have a Follow up : That's something I Fight for, and I have Recently added some More Observations" in an EU Parliament's Draft, the Top MEP ensured.

=> - 'In Conclusion, to sum up : All this is Not a matter for Immediate Outcome, already overNight... But it's part of the Main, most Important Avenue, accross which we Must Advance", he (diplomatically, but resolutely, urged).

 

 

(../..)

 

("DraftNews")


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  Ten Years of ECHR : 1998 - 2008 show need of Revival in 2009-2010 coinciding with 2009 EU Election
   

A threefold, coordinated move by new Top French Political actors in the 2009 EU Parliament Elections, expressed in Strasbourg a will to boost Europe's Political dimension close to Citizens' concerns, going from protection of Economy to defence of Human Rights.    

The move met an exceptional ECHR's call for a "revival" of Human Rights' protection mechanism', in a Mega-Conference, early 2010.   

Obviously focusing on June 2009 Elections to EU Parliament, it involved from the outset the recently nominated "dual" Head of French Governing Party (UMP)  Michel BARNIER and Rachida DATI :

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     - "As President Sarkozy has clearly said, we (France) are in favor of a Strong, Sovereign and Independent, Political Europe, which protects its Citizens, and not for a large Super-Market, nor for a Europe under influence",

    "This goes for everything, including Energy", added to "EuroFora" the experienced former EU Commissioner, Minister of Foreign affairs, currently of Agriculture and Sarkozy's new pick as Leader of the Governing party UMP to EU 2009 Election, Michel BARNIER                                              .                             

  - Human Rights are important because they are at the Heart of the Political Europe that we aspire for : I.e. a Europe able to act and protect its Citizens, stressed also the New French Minister for European affairs, Bruno LE MAIRE, while meeting Strasbourg's Journalists at his first visit to the CoE.   

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This is one of the main interests for CoE, which is also a natural place for cooperation between EU countries and Russia or Turkey, which was recently helpful at the Middle East crisis, he added.

The move gained momentum with French Minister of Justice, Rachida Dati's main observations at ECHR's 5Oth Anniversary :   

- "While we are seeking Europe's Borders and Identity, you (ECHR) remind us also of its Values", Human Rights, Dati noted.   

Citizens seek more and more often ECHR's help, and the tempo accelerates, Europa awaits a symbol, while national legal orders are not freezed   

And she expressed "support" to ECHR President Jean-Paul Costa's call to satisfy the vital need to revigorate the PanEuropean Court by deciding big changes at a High-Level Conference open to a large audience, a kind of "Etats Generaux" of Human Rights, at the beginning of 2010.       

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It's not so much the recently growing number of applications for Russia or Ukraine etc, which seems to be Costa's main concern : In fact, the cases declared "admissible" are much fewer...    

But rather the persistent violations of Human Rights, sometimes very grave (ie. murders, torture, abritrary deprivation of liberty, oppression of freedom of speech, destructions of homes/properties, etc), despite numerous, repeated condemnations by ECHR. So that CoE's Ministers, due to "supervise execution" of ECHR's judgements, are overloaded.   

F.ex. most Media noted that Turkey still remains, even in 2008, the 1st among 47 CoE member States in the number of condemnations by ECHR :  257, compared to 233 for Russia, with a population more than the double..    

The problem is that it's not the 1st time at all : During all the last Decade 1998-2008, Turkey was condemned by ECHR much more than any other State, and for particularly grave violations :   

- 1.652 condemnations, compared to 605 for Russia, 548 for Poland, 494 for France, 476 for Ukraine, etc.   

Italy's second place with 1.394 condemnations is a misleading false appearance : In fact, most of them (999) concern mere "procedural delays" in national courts. Same for France.   

On the contrary, Turkey was condemned 180 times for Killings, 192 times for Torture or Inhuman/Degrading treatments, 340 times for arbitrary deprivation of Liberty, 528 times for "Unfair trial", and 169 times for oppression of Freedom of speech, (etc). And the latest, 2008 numbers, indicate no change in this trend, (See supra).   

The current Spanish CoE Presidency (November 2008 - May 2009) has made of the implementation of ECHR's judgements its 1st Priority.   

ECHR's President, Jean-Paul Costa, stressed in its 2009 Annual Press Conference, CoE Member States' obligation to implement the judgements, according to Article 46 of the European Convention on Human Rights.   

Moreover, if CoE's Committee of Ministers delays to ensure implementation, then, the repetition of violations in similar cases provokes a multiplication of complaints tabled to the Court, which overload the mecanism for the protection of Human Rights, denounced Costa.          

A series of Debates on "the situation of Human Rights in Europe", focusing on the "need to fight against Impunity" of perpetrators of grave crimes, is  currently prepared by CoE's Parliamentary Assembly for the session of June 2009.  

The final Timing comes shortly AFTER the EU Elections, but the main Reports should have been adopted before.

Meanwhile, French President Sarkozy and German Chancelor Merkel's recent call "for a Political Europe" in 2009 EU Elections (See earlier "correspondence from Paris, Elysee Palace), seems more and more endorsed also by other EU Countries' Top MEPs :

Thus, f.ex., EU Parliament's 1st vice-President, Greek MEP Mrs Rodi KRATSA, speaking to "EuroFora", agreed that 2009 EU Election would be a "naturally good" opportunity to debate what really interests EU Citizens : "The Future of a Political Europe, able to face the Economic Crisis, with a Culture and identity which attracts the People"

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(Photo taken earlier during Sarkozy's 1st visit at EU Parliament, in 2007 : Sarkozy and Merkel's Ideas for a Political Europe inspire also other EU politicians accross the continent)..
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