Youth groups call for ‘united’ Union

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Series Details Vol.7, No.38, 18.10.01, p8
Publication Date 18/10/2001
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Date: 18/10/01

By Martin Banks

YOUTH organisations have called for a European government to be formed to transform a "weak and divided" EU.

The call follows a one-day summit in Brussels of 700 representatives from youth political parties and groups.

The European Youth Convention on the Future of Europe was also attended by Belgian Deputy Prime Minister Isabelle Durant, European Commissioners Pascal Lamy and Michaele Schreyer, several MEPs and Brussels Mayor Freddy Thielmanns.

One of the speakers, Daniel Tanahatoe, said: "Over 50 years have passed since the Schuman Declaration launched the first European Community but, today, Europe is still weak and divided. It continues to be ruled by people elected to run their national governments according to their national interests and not by people elected to run Europe according to the European interest."

Delegates drew up a three-point manifesto calling for a supranational European government, the end of treaties between member states, and a European constitution.

The two-tier government would consist of representatives of European citizens sitting in one chamber and of member states in the other.

Tanahatoe, representing the Liberal and Radical Youth Movement of the European Union, said: "It is time for a true European federation, based on freedom and democracy, openness and transparency. Such a federation would be exactly the opposite of a super-state and would ensure unity in diversity."

He added: "Young Europeans do not have unlimited time to become united. Nationalism, xenophobia and fragmentation are resurgent in many of our countries."

Youth organisations have called for a European government to be formed to transform a 'weak and divided' EU.

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