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PES demands that European Council does not sacrifice Europeans’ ease of movement due to scaremongering

Date

16 Jun 2011

Sections

EU Priorities 2020

(Brussels, 14 June)

In a strongly worded statement, the Party of European Socialists has today called on the European Council not to dilute the “Schengen” agreement. The agreement, one of the fundamental principles of the EU,  which guarantees free movement for European Citizens throughout 25 European countries, has recently come under threat. EU Leaders will meet as the European Council to take a decision on the issue on 24 June.

The threat to the Schengen Agreement has come from Conservative politicians’ scaremongering. In particularly, these Conservatives have tried to confuse the issue by associating the agreement (and attempts to revise it) with the recent displacement of people during the Arab Spring.

“Lead by French and Italian Conservatives from the UMP and Lega Nord, respectively, the Franco-Italian response to the situation has undermined the very essence of European cooperation”, stated PES network chair, Tanja Fajon MEP. The Slovenian Member of the European Parliament emphasised that; “Revising the Schengen Acquis or introducing new mechanisms re-establishing the internal borders does not solve the issue of people arriving at EU external borders”. She added that;“Such an approach would sacrifice Europeans’ ease of movement due to scaremongering”.

The PES statement called for; “A common approach and strengthening of the cooperation between EU Member States regarding external borders”. It emphasised that the basic need for human dignity should form a cornerstone of the approach.

Ms. Fajon added that; “the test on our commitment to human dignity comes in times of adversity. The EU has a responsibility to show leadership faced with these turbulence  events and compassion faced with the people left in their wake”.

For full statement please go here

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