Senate President Calin Popescu-Tariceanu believes there is need for identifying solutions in order to “recalibrate” the European political concept, underlining the need for a common foreign policy supported by “the certainty of a common destiny” based on shared values throughout Europe .
“More often than not, crises and confrontations that do not receive adequate reactions create cleavages or accentuate existing fragmentation, deeply affecting the awareness of the merit of solidarity and cohesion in order to maintain a lasting Union. We are called, as members of the EU Parliaments to identify solutions to facilitate the recalibration of the European political concept and, at the same time, to make every effort to reach a common foreign policy backed by the certainty of a common destiny based on shared values between the East and the West, South and North. An Europe with two or multiple speeds would impose additional burdens on consensus,” Tariceanu said Thursday at the Parliament Palace in the opening of the 14th Inter-parliamentary Conference for the Common Foreign and Security Policy and the Common Security and Defence Policy (CFSP/CSDP) , an event attended by 300 delegates from EU Member States of the European Parliament, as well as representatives of candidate countries and embassies.
According to the organizers, the agenda of the conference aimed to cover, in plenary sessions, a number of important PESC/PSAC issues, such as the strategic importance of the Black Sea on the EU agenda, the Eastern Partnership, cooperation and financing instruments developed under the PSAC and the EU’s commitment to the Western Balkans.
The workshops were structured to respond to recent member states’ concerns regarding the future PSEC/PSAC from the perspective of the Brexit, the EU Strategy for the Danube Region, military mobility, cyber security and hybrid war.
He argues that “making efforts to promote a Common Foreign and Security Policy seems to have become rather a high ideal in the current global context, characterized by an ample set of interconnected issues that generate fragmentary responses from states, according to their size, their budget, their defense capabilities, their energy independence or their geographical location.”
According to Tariceanu, “challenging the legitimacy [of the European Commission] is further fueled by the delay in relation to Romania and Bulgaria of the conclusion and lifting of the Cooperation and Verification Mechanism, which for 12 years has undermined these countries’s status as members with full rights in the EU – from their accession in 2007.”
“Beyond any doubt, crises and confrontations requiring a common EU response will continue to emerge in this international context, characterized by protectionism and hegemonic predispositions that counterbalance a plausible multipolarity. Therefore, we must avoid the lack of unity on the ‘home front’ to build up the necessary consensus to support a strong and unanimous stand, which the ability to influence foreign policy issues is based on – in the same way that the EU exerts influence on trade issues, connectivity or other sectoral areas of cooperation with third parties The suspension of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF) confronts us with the undesirable prospect of a new nuclear arms race in Europe. The withdrawal of the United States from the nuclear agreement with Iran, the response on the Eastern Flank to the threats generated by the annexation of Crimea are just one part of the current confrontations with the Common Foreign and Security Policy. It is clear to us that we must be firmly united in Europe to defend the benefits of peace created after the last two wars: the Second World War and the Cold War,” Tariceanu stated.
“We urge Western Balkan countries to overcome disagreements”
At a CFSP/CSDP conference in Bucharest on Thursday, President of the Romanian Senate Calin Popescu-Tariceanu urged the Western Balkan countries to overcome their differences so that the European Union’s sustainable commitment to internal and external reconciliation may be reconfirmed as preconditions for EU membership.
“In the parliaments we represent, we need to promote legislative formulas to support the development of resilient societies, especially in the front lines, and at the same time we must be more decisive players in our eastern and southern neighbourhoods to make sure that our partners have the means to promote and defend democracy, freedom and human dignity. We welcome the determination, perseverance and courage demonstrated by the political and civic actors that have enabled the implementation of the Prespa Agreement – an important cornerstone of peace and security in South-Eastern Europe. We strongly invite decision makers in the region to capitalise on this achievement in resolving long-standing conflicts, particularly under the EU-facilitated Belgrade-Pristina dialogue. Let us reconfirm loud and clear the European Union’s sustained commitment to internal and external reconciliation as preconditions for EU membership and urge the Western Balkan countries to overcome their remaining disagreements,” Tariceanu said Thursday at Parliament Palace at the opening of the 14th Inter-Parliamentary Conference for the Common Foreign and Security Policy and the Common Security and Defence Policy (CFSP/CSDP).
He pointed out that the Black Sea region is one of the most important to EU security, which is why “European institutions need to increase their visibility in policies and adopt a clearer and better articulated regional approach.”
“Given the context, we are worried about the militarisation of the Azov Sea as an aspect of aggression and violation of international law that threatens the security of the entire region. Romania has consistently acted to influence positively the course of the Republic of Moldova towards EU accession also by supporting national efforts to bring the Moldovan institutions up to European standards, as well as by strengthening cultural, economic and social interconnections. The beneficial and close relationship between the EU and the Republic of Moldova should not become a victim of recent developments. It is important that the group of friends of the Republic of Moldova continue to be active in the changing post-electoral political context and try to strengthen the confidence in the government that will result in Chisinau – to the benefit of strengthening democratic mechanisms and institutions and building a pro-Europe society in the immediate vicinity the EU,” added Tariceanu.
He said that cyber-attacks and threats of hybrid war are important challenges that has to be met in common and for which appropriate responses should be prepared through the Common Security and Defence Policy.
Iordache: Romanian Presidency of EU Council – important steps for strengthening global role of the Union
Romania proposed and already made “important” steps to support the strengthening of the European Union’s global role during its term in office as the Presidency of the EU Council, Deputy Speaker of the Chamber of Deputies Florin Iordache stated on Wednesday.
“During its mandate at the EU Council Presidency, Romania wants to and already made “important” steps to support the strengthening of the European Union’s global role, by promoting the enlargement policy, the Union’s action in the vicinity, the continuation of the implementation of the global strategy, ensuring the necessary resources at the Union level and the implementation of the EU’s overall commitments. The main objectives are to enhance the Union’s defence and security capabilities in close complementarity with similar NATO processes, to support the strengthening of joint security and defence policy actions, mainly through strengthening the existing mechanisms and ensuring the synergy of the new instruments, advancing the Union’s enlargement policies to ensure increased security internally and externally, promoting coordinated and coherent actions in the Union’s vicinity at the 10th anniversary of the launching of the Eastern Partnership,” Iordache said at the inaugural session of the 14th Inter-parliamentary Conference on Common Foreign and Security Policy and Common Security and Defense Policy (PESC/PSAC).
The Deputy Speaker of the Chamber of Deputies added that, considering these priorities, the agenda of the inter-parliamentary conference in Bucharest comprehensively treats a series of topical interests for the member states and combines the need for ensuring the thematic continuity with the previous approaches of the Presidency of the Council and EU and the actuality of some regional issues with a major impact on the security of the entire EU, such as the strategic importance of the Black Sea.
“I am convinced that the rich expertise of those who have accepted the invitation to speak in the conference panels, as well as the sustained and constructive dialogue between the participants will contribute to the strengthening of a common stand in the face of the numerous security challenges and a coherent vision on the one hand, the ability of the EU to manifest itself as a global actor, and the ability of each member state to guarantee the security of its own citizens,” Iordache said.
MEP Pascu: nuclear forces treaty is a challenge that imposes a strong standpoint of the EU
The nuclear forces treaty represents a challenge for which a “strong” EU position is required, which has to show solidarity and unite with NATO in order to deal with the threats, Vice-President of the European Parliament and Social Democratic Party (PSD) MEP Ioan Mircea Pascu stated.
“In respect to the EU’s foreign and security policy, I am convinced that we need to strengthen this policy in order to promote our interests, to promote our values at global level. We can not stand aside and let others draw the destiny of the world. The Treaty of Nuclear Forces is an example in this respect, it is a challenge that requires a strong European Union standpoint, in view of protecting our interests. If we are confronted with the concerning prospect of a new nuclear arms race in Europe, we, as Europeans, should show solidarity, join our NATO allies in order to be more united against the threats to peace in Europe. In order to be more united, we need to reform our decision-making process in the EU in terms of foreign policy,” Pascu said at the 14th Inter-Parliamentary Conference for the Common Foreign and Security Policy and the Common Security and Defence Policy (CFSP/CSDP).
He stated that “taking into account the latest progresses in this area, the PE requests the establishment of a new Council for Foreign Policy and the EU wants to replace the absolute majority vote by the majority vote, not unanimously, so that foreign policy issues can be voted.”
Related to the security and defence topic, Pascu stated that the EU sees military capability with “a lot of seriousness.”
According to Pascu, a new approach of security and defence policy is needed, that can be endorsed accordingly by the EU institutions.
The values of the EU are “undermined” and the hybrid tactics might target it, this is why, a corresponding security and defence policy is needed, Ioan Mircea Pascu underscored.