Western Balkans and climate change top EPP Political Assembly agenda

EPP President Joseph Daul; Photo: EPP

BRUSSELS – Members of the EPP Political Assembly gathered in Brussels on 8-9 June for their quarterly meeting: climate change, the situation in the Western Balkans and the role of higher education in intercultural dialogue topped the agenda, EPP stated.

The Political Assembly featured a lengthy debate on the situation in the Western Balkans, with key speakers Daniel Mitov, former Foreign Affairs Minister of Bulgaria, and Gerald Knaus, Chairman of the European Stability Initiative. Following the debate, EPP President Joseph Daul made the following statement:

“The Western Balkans remains a priority region for the EPP, as the European Union will not be complete until these countries join our union. Our commitment to the region is undeniable. A peaceful and prosperous Western Balkans will not only benefit the people of the region, especially the young generations, but also all Europeans. But more efforts must still be made in implementing the rule of law, fighting against corruption and reforming the judiciary.”

Two resolutions, one on climate change and the second on the essential role of higher education in intercultural dialogue, were also adopted during the meeting. Regarding the resolution on the withdrawal of the United States from the Paris Agreement, EPP President Joseph Daul said the following:

“The withdrawal of the United States from the Paris Agreement is a giant step backwards. The EPP reiterates its full support for the historic deal reached in 2015 and calls for international solidarity and responsibility. Climate change is a threat to life as we know it. Only if we act together can we preserve the planet for future generations.”

EPP members also held a minute of silence in memory of the victims of terrorist attacks in Europe and across the world. And they observed a moment of silence in tribute to former Greek Prime Minister Konstantinos Mitsotakis and to former Austrian Vice Chancellor Alois Mock.

Finally, the Political Assembly decided to exclude DP-Bulgaria, PNTCD-Romania and R.O.L Armenia from the EPP, in accordance with EPP statutes.