European Parliament member Elmar Brok will continue to lead the European Federalists for a further two years. The UEF re-elected the East Westphalian politician of the Christian Democratic Union and Chair of the European Parliament Foreign Affairs Committee, at the 70th anniversary Congress on 12 June 2016. Under the motto ‘European Future or National Decline – Time for a Federal Europe’ more than 200 delegates and guests gathered in Strasbourg to celebrate the anniversary of the federalist movement and outline their goals for the future.
“Only a federal Europe with strong democratic institutions can meet current challenges”, explained Brok as he called for a revival of the European political project during the celebratory event in Strasbourg. He called for a strengthening of the Economic and Monetary Union taking advantage of reforms possible without changing existing European Treaties. Mr Brok, who was elected to the European Parliament in 1980, argued that in the mid-term a new Convention was necessary.
As a member of the European Parliaments Institutional Affairs Committee, Brok is currently actively engaged in discussions about the future of the European Union. Together with Italian Social Democrat Mercedes Bresso, Mr Brok is currently preparing a report outlining the potential future routes for the institutional future of the EU under the title: ‘Improving the functioning of the European Union building on the potential of the Lisbon Treaty’. “It is more necessary than ever to win back the lost trust of European citizens” stressed Brok, the Union of European Federalists have an important role to play in this regard.
Comprising over 20 national sections, the UEF is amongst the largest pro-European organisations. Over the past seven decades the UEF has been a leading voice in the promotion of European unity and calling for decisive advances, first in the development of the European Communities and later the European Union. The motto of the former German Chancellor Konrad Adenauer rings as true today as ever: “There was a time when a few people dreamed of European unity. It has since become the hope of many, and today it is a necessity for all.”
The Union of European Federalists (UEF) was officially brought into life on 15 December in 1946, in Paris, shortly after World War II, in the belief that only by uniting into a European Federation could the states of Europe overcome the divisions of the past and ensure a future of peace and economic prosperity. This year marks the UEF’s 70th anniversary, a significant milestone that brings together generations of passionate European federalists who, since the end of World War II, have been campaigning for a united and federal Europe.
The UEF consists of 24 national member organisations across Europe that are autonomous centres of the UEF activities, reaching the EU citizens and spreading the federalists' message to them by organising various activities in their countries.
Elmar Brok (EPP, Germany) is the longest serving member of the European Parliament (in office since 1980) and Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee. A long-standing advocate of a federal Europe, he is also co-chair of The Spinelli Group, the network gathering the most pro-European and federalist members of the European Parliament. He is also an active member of the Constitutional Affairs Committee where he is currently co-authoring a report on how to further progress economic and political integration within the boundaries of the current EU treaties.