MEPs mark Europe Day
By Gaspard Sebag | Tuesday 08 May 2012
On Europe Day, 9 May, 52 years after the Schuman Declaration, members of the European Parliament will debate the challenges to be addressed in the future.
EPP leader Joseph Daul (France) plans to insist on the need to combat populism and the rise of extremism. “Right-wing populism, just as much as left-wing populism, has no place in Europe, and I urge all traditional political parties to remember they have nothing to gain, and everything to lose, in trivialising the extremes,” Daul will say.
ALDE head Guy Verhofstadt (Belgium) is expected to broach a similar topic. Recently, he declared to Public Service Europe “we have to show the public that it is not through nationalism and populism that we will solve the crisis”. He called instead for “a radical pro-European stance” to solve the crisis, “to dream of and reach a post-national future for Europe”.
The need for a new direction will be the cornerstone of S&D President Hannes Swoboda’s (Austria) speech. “The origin of a united Europe to reach peace between the nations still stands. But today the true challenge is about reaching social peace and social justice,” he told
Europolitics. “We need to give [EU citizens] back hope and trust,” he concluded.