Macron proposes a European confederation broader than the EU to host Ukraine | International
is the headline of the news that the author of WTM News has collected this article. Stay tuned to WTM News to stay up to date with the latest news on this topic. We ask you to follow us on social networks.
Emmanuel Macron, recently re-elected to the presidency of France, has proposed this Monday in Strasbourg to create an organization, broader than the European Union (EU), that will allow the articulation of a new political structure in which democracies cooperate in areas such as security and energy. This organization, which Macron baptized the “European Political Community”, would allow countries like Ukraine, today attacked by Russia and years of complying with the strict requirements to enter the EU, to be welcomed.
“Unite our Europe, in the truth of its geography, on the basis of its democratic values, with the will to preserve the unity of our continent and conserving the strength and ambition of our integration: here is my proposal”, declared the French president in a speech before the European Parliament to mark the closing of the conference on the future of Europe.
Macron spoke to the representatives of the European people on May 9, the day that commemorates the Schuman Declaration, the founding document of a united Europe. The same day is commemorated in Russia on Victory Day: the end of World War II in Europe. The French president’s speech celebrating EU integration, and exploring ways to reassert what he calls its “independence and sovereignty,” was a counterpoint to Russian President Vladimir Putin’s in Moscow justifying the invasion of Ukraine.
Macron’s proposal, whose country occupies the rotating presidency of the EU this semester, takes up an old idea from another French president, François Mitterrand. And another more recent one that the former Italian Prime Minister, Enric Letta, formulated in an interview in the newspaper Les Echos. Letta explained that he had calculated that, according to current rules, Ukraine would not join the EU until 2036. The solution? “Build from now on a European confederation that will be the institutional place to give Ukraine, without forgetting other candidate countries, the opportunity to integrate into the European family.”
Heart member, “for his combat and courage”
Macron, in line with Letta, defended that “because of his combat and his courage”, Ukraine is already “a member at heart” of the EU. But he recalled that joining the club can take years, even decades. If the criteria for entry were to be lowered, he reasoned, it would mean “totally rethinking Europe’s unity and principles to be tough on current members.”
Join EL PAÍS to follow all the news and read without limits.
“Let’s be clear, the European Union, taking into account its level of integration and ambition, cannot be, in the short term, the only means of structuring the European continent,” said the French president. “We need, in the face of the new geopolitical context, to find a way to think about our Europe, its unity, its stability without weakening the intimacy built within our European Union”.
Hence the idea of the European Political Community, which is distantly inspired, according to Macron, in the European Confederation that Mitterrand proposed in 1989 in the midst of the collapse of the Soviet empire. The proposal failed. Because it associated Russia in the confederation, “which was obviously unacceptable for the States that had just freed themselves from the Soviet yoke,” Macron recalled. And also, although he did not remember this, because these countries wanted to enter a united Europe quickly, without waiting for another organization that seemed to them a second-class EU.
“The question was correct and it is still valid,” Macron argued. “How to organize Europe from a political point of view and broader than the European Union? Our historical obligation is to respond to this today and create what I would describe to you as a European Political Community”.
The French president believes that this organization would allow democracies to build a space for “political cooperation, security, energy, transport, investment in infrastructure, movement of people and in particular youth.” He added that joining the new community would not force future EU membership, and would not close the door on the UK, which has left it.
With the speech in Strasbourg, Macron showed his cards in the debate that is opening on the reform of the treaties and the future of Europe. He also marked the territory in French politics. The collapse of socialists and conservatives and the rise of the extreme right and radical left, both eurosceptic, have left him and his supporters as the only, but powerful, pro-European pole in France. After Strasbourg, he flew to Berlin to meet Chancellor Olaf Scholz in the tradition that the president-elect’s first trip abroad is to Germany.
Follow all the international information in Facebook Y Twitteror in our weekly newsletter.