Young reporters come to Brussels
Two Spring Day young reporters spent Spring Day in Brussels, amongst the movers and the shakers
of Europe's capital. After a day at the European Council summit, the European Parliament and
Commission, they wrote a series of articles for this site. This is the first of three, written by Marlene
European Schoolnet invited Audroné Pauliukeviciute and myself, Marlene Koehler, from Austria to represent
the Young Reporters in Brussels on the occasion of Spring Day in Europe. We also represented both the
present and future of the EU, since I come from Austria and Audrone comes from Lithuania.
Once we had met at the airport on 20 March, we had a little time to see Brussels’ main sight, the Grand’
Place. We then met some of the staff at European Schoolnet. They come from all over Europe and beyond.
It was very important for us to get press passes for the European Council taking place on the following day,
21 March. While we got our passes quickly, some reporters from The Sun, a famous UK newspaper, had lots
of problems. They were quite angry about this!
After getting our press passes, we interviewed Stefaan De Rynk. He is the European Commission’s
spokesman for institutional reform and works in the Cabinet of Michel Barnier, who is a Commissioner and
one of the initiators of Spring Day.
As we were leaving the Commission’s Breydel building, we saw Chris Patten. He is Commissioner for
External Affairs at the European Commission. He was of course very busy with the Iraq situation but allowed
us a few seconds of his time for a photo.
The next day, 21 March, was the day of European Council. The main focus of the summit was the war in
Iraq. We saw European leaders like Tony Blair and Gerhard Schröder face-to-face and heard what they said
about the war. We all felt very important to be amongst all the world’s top reporters.
It was unusual and intense, but a good experience and I am glad that we had the opportunity to see so many
important people and learn so much.
Marlene Koehler is a pupil at VBS-HAKIII Schoenborngasse in Vienna, Austria.