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Dear Friends, The European Citizens' Initiative becomes a real tool for more democracy soon. We spend a lot of time brainstorming these weeks to find the best issue to table amongst the first initiatives. It is not easy to do! We need to agree on a relevant issue, big enough to find traction and a good coalition, but it must not be too technical. Many things need to be respected. At the occasion of our Federal Committee (12-13 November 2011) we will try to conclude the debate and kick off actions for an effective campaign. As you can read below, interesting ECI proposals already exist. Sincerely yours,
UEF Secretary General
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NEWS FROM SECTIONS
UEF Germany supports campaign to establish United Nations Parliamentary Assembly
The executive board of the UEF's German section - Europa Union Deutschland’s - signed an open letter urging the German government to support the establishment of a UN Parliamentary Assembly during international negotiations.
The initiative was brought forward by a coalition of German NGOs and individual politicians in order to support the European Parliament in its quest to strengthen democratic governance in a globalized world through a UN Parliamentary Assembly.
For further information about the open letter as well as the larger campaign visit UNPA Campaign's website.
A European Citizens Initiative to complement the Campaign for a European Federation
On the 17 September 2011, the National Board of the MFE, UEF in Italy, meeting in Milano resolved to propose a European Citizens' Initiative (ECI) for "A sustainable development plan for growth, economic recovery and employment in the European Union". The main goal of the ECI is to mobilize the European public opinion on this vital point for our countries and our continent and to facilitate the engagement of citizens and organisations in the Campaign for a European Federation that MFE has launched in the Spring.
Read an English version of the ECI proposal and a contribution by Alfonso Iozzo explaining the prosal.
100 Cities for a European Federation!
With 2 days of events in Milano on 30 September and 1 October 2011, the MFE, Italian section of the UEF, and GFE, the Italian section of JEF, kicked-off an action "100 Cities for a European Federation" in the framework of their Campaign for a European Federation.
The events started with a conference in Milano's town hall with the title "Europe: federation or catastrophe" attended by local and national politicians and representatives of social forces. In the afternoon, a stand was organised in front of the town hall to collect signatures of citizens on MFE's appeal for a European Federation and distribute federalist material. The day after, JEF-Italy organised a panel with representatives of your political organisations followed by another public action.
Europa Union Deutschland’s Federal Committee discusses the future of the Euro
On 17 September 2011, during his opening speech Peter Altmaier, president of the Europa Union Deutschland, UEF’s German section, emphasized that Europe’s common currency has brought a decade of stability and prosperity.
In order to protect these achievements the Member States need to adhere to the Maastricht criteria and to implement sustainable financial and budgetary policies. According to Altmaier, the solution of the crisis lies in enhanced cooperation, not in excluding states like Greece from the Euro zone. The view that the European Union and its currency are worth fighting for was also brought forward during a panel discussion. Read the full article...
Panel Discussion with Ambassador Kovac on Croatia’s EU accession
Having finalised the accession negotiations successfully, Croatia is to join the EU on July 1st, 2013. There are hopes that Croatia’s membership will have a positive impact on the Balkan region. Yet, in how far is Croatia really able to influence its neighbouring countries? How is Croatia’s process of political and economic reform going to develop after accession? What are the benefits of the country’s accession both for Croatia and for present EU member states?
On 21 September 2011, these questions were discussed by Ambassador Dr. Miro Kovač, MP Horst Meierhofer, Croatia expert of the European Commission, Dirk Lange, and Dr. Katrin Böttger, deputy director of the Institute for European Politics (IEP) during a panel debate in the European House in.
The panellists agreed that Croatia’s accession is an important step, but not the final point of the country’s reform process. However, if the country continues necessary economic, judicial and administrative reforms it could indeed serve as a role model for the Balkan region. Moreover, trade relations between Croatia and EU member states will be intensified quickly. Hence, Croatia’s EU accession will be beneficial for both the country and the Union.
Debate: Euroscepticism in the memberstates
On 20 September 2011, organized by the European Movement-Belgium, in collaboration with the Information Office of the European Parliament in Belgium, the debate on the euroscepticism will be held. The debate will try to answer questions - What feeds the Euroscepticism in Europe? What is the responsibility of European institutions in the rise of Euroscepticism and how can the EU fight it? Has the EU exceeded its base of support democracy?
Speakers: Joris Olivier, Head of Europe's FEB, Sophie Heine, researcher at ULB and author of "Eurosceptic or Eurocritical? Oppositions to the European Union in the French and German Left"; Hugh Barton-Smith, Communications Consultant, former officer at the European Commission and to the European Parliament.
More info on the event...
The fate of the eurozone – what kind of Europe can survive the crisis?
On 29 October 2011, a conference “The fate of the eurozone – what kind of Europe can survive the crisis?”, organised by Federal Union and the Federal Trust, will look at the causes of the crisis, the economic solutions that might work, and the political strategies that are needed. What kind of political Europe will emerge from the crisis?
The conference will be held at the King’s College London from 10.30 am to 4 pm, The Strand, London WC2B 2LS. More info on registration on the Federal Union's website.
Register for the Congress of Europa Union Deutschland (EUD)
On 26 – 27 November 2011, the EUD Congress is going to take place in Berlin. UEF’s German section will elect a new executive board and discuss the first draft of a new program concerning the association’s basic principles. Furthermore, EUD’s Europe-Professional Group will award the Europe Prizes 2011. Guests are warmly welcome.
Please register here.
In the view of the upcoming JEF European Congress in Helsinki (28-30 October, 2011), JEF Europe invites its alumni and friends from within their network and from partner organisations to make a small donation to help reimbursing those young delegates having the least available resources and the highest travel costs to get to Helsinki. Please feel free to distribute this Scolarship Fund Letter to those who would be willing to support this cause.
Union of European Federalists (U.E.F.)
European Secretariat, Square de Meeûs 25, B - 1000 Brussels
Tel: +32 (0)2 508 30 30 | firstname.lastname@example.org | http://www.federalists.eu