March 2010 | ELDR News n°5 | www.eldr.eu Page 1
European Liberal Democrats
The European Liberal Democrat and Reform Party (ELDR Party) brings together 56 political parties with common liberal,
democratic and reform ideals and is the forum for member parties to develop co-ordinated policies.
Page 2 Surfing the tides of change
〜 Italy / Europe – Hope & Liberals ready for the new Europe
〜 The new ELDR Bureau Heads of State and Government) has previous one with a larger and more vo-
appointed its President and the High ciferous eurosceptic segment.
Page 3 Representative for Foreign and Security
〜 Liberals lay down their Policy who is also the Vice-President of Other changes are in the making. Under
Strategic Plan 2009-2014 the Commission. Former Belgian Prime the name of the European External
〜 012 vs. 2020 - End of the
2 Minister Herman Van Rompuy is the Action Service, a truly European diplo-
first president, and Baroness Catherine matic service must be established. This
world or new European
Ashton the first High Rep. Both of them EEAS should become the embodiment of
strategy ? are unknown quantities to most of the single voice with which the Union is
〜 n EU Common Market
A the European citizens. As lady Ashton supposed to speak on the global scene.
for CO2 is also a member of the Commission, It is not going to be easy. Many member
she had to submit to a hearing in the states, of all sizes, have long and pres-
Page 4 SPeCIaL European Parliament, exactly as the tigious diplomatic traditions. Some of
〜 U SWIFT agreement with
E 26 other newly appointed commissio- them fear to loose those traditions. The
ners. She has undeniable qualities and European Parliament is impatient to im-
US authorities + JOINT
weaknesses. print its mark on future EU foreign poli-
INTERVIEW cy, forgetting that a Parliament can and
〜 DP – sceptical about new
F European Liberals also welcome the should control foreign policy, but is not
European Committee to new commission, officially appointed supposed to conduct it.
fight terrorism First of all, I wish all of the ELDR member for taking this risk, congratulate those on Tuesday 9 February, that counts ei-
〜 LDE Group – Parliament
A parties, their leaders and their members who were elected and thank those who ght liberal commissioners who hold Apart from that, turf wars are already in
a happy and successful 2010. Many were not for elegantly accepting the out- important portfolios like international the making between the different institu-
rejects SWIFT agreement of you participated in our Barcelona come. As I told the congress, I want us trade, economic and monetary affairs, tions and services involved in the various
congress which has been one of the to continue to work with them, as no ta- home affairs and migration, environ- aspects of foreign policy in the narrow and
Page 5 SPeCIaL best congresses in ELDR history : huge lent should ever be wasted, liberal ta- ment, digital agenda ; research and de- in the broad sense of the word.
〜 BODY SCANNERS FEVER attendance, lively debates, lavish so- lent least of all. I am most thankful for velopment, youth, culture and educa-
〜 Body scanner cial occasions and hotly contested bu- the confidence put in me, and will do tion, and transport. ELDR will do its utmost to help bring
〜 he EU steps down on body
T reau elections. I stood unopposed and my utmost to further strengthen ELDR about an evolution it has long since cal-
scanner was re elected by more than 85 % of and its member parties. The Parliament that came out of last led for : an efficient and effective EU fo-
the voters. Eight candidates ran for the summer’s elections is indeed quite dif- reign policy.
Page 6 four vice-president positions. Four of the Since the congress the EU has under- ferent from the previous one. Not only
candidates would inevitably fail and be gone important changes. The Lisbon does the Parliament have much larger
〜 urope is our home : no
E disappointed, an unpleasant but inevi- Treaty has finally come into force and competences thanks to the new Treaty, 〜 by Annemie Neyts-Uyttebroeck
visas table perspective. I thank all candidates the European Council (the council of the it is also much more assertive than the ELDR President
〜 Liberal single market for
health care is possible
〜 iberal Health Care
– Mission Possible
the Spanish Presidency of the European Union
The most respec- But people in the ELDR Party are in- and Galician—to be recognised by the
Page 7 te d i nte r n at i o - terested in knowing what this process European institutions. In this view, Spain
〜 EING LIBERALS – SYMBOLS
B nal press has ex- looks like from inside Spain, and to hear ought also to strive to carry through the
& WORDS pressed all manner the Catalan view from the liberals of recommendations of the Committee of
of reservations as Spain assumes the Convergència. the Regions regarding the cooperation
Page 8 EU’s rotating presidency. On the three that is required between the different
〜 e Magistris and the
D previous occasions when Spain has ta- It is now time to implement the institu- administrative levels. According to the
challenge of the post ken on this responsibility the reaction tional improvements introduced in the new Treaty, this Committee is to be-
was altogether different. Now there Lisbon Treaty. It is a task which falls in come the body that monitors the prin-
Berlusconi Era is the sensation, however, that Spain, the first instance to the permanent pre- ciple of subsidiarity.
Saving the EU with some of the worst economic sta- sident of the EU ; it is evident, howe- free trade area. In this regard, Spain in
〜 uropean liberals upcoming
E tistics in the EU, is not the member with ver, that the authority of the holder of From a Catalan point of view, and we my opinion has a very important role to
events 2010 the best credentials to lead recovery. the rotating presidency could be very have been stressing this point, it is abo- play in concluding the framework agree-
〜 uropean liberals at the
E 2010 will still be a difficult year for the useful, for example, to put into practi- ve all the moment to fully implement ments with the Maghreb countries : the
whole of Europe. It is clear that diffi- ce the new system of decision-making the Union for the Mediterranean. Since advanced statute with Morocco, and
30th ELDR Congress in cult decisions will have to be taken. The or to put the European External Action 1995, when the Barcelona Process was the framework agreements with Libya,
Barcelona engines of Europe will still not be run- Service into operation. initiated, we in Catalonia have always Tunisia and Algeria.
ning at full power and it is difficult for been pressing for Spain to promote and
tail-enders, such as Latvia or Greece, It is our view that Spain should also lead Mediterranean policy. On 7 June And finally, to turn to another sphere
to keep up. Under these circumstan- confront this presidency by promoting the second summit of the Union for the entirely, this presidency is also the time
ces it is obvious that to lead recovery governance based on respect for diver- Mediterranean is to be held in Barcelona. for the Mediterranean rail freight corri-
it would be better to have in the dri- sity. At the outset, Spain should have Between now and then form must be dor to be consolidated as a great econo-
ving seat a member state that is ma- presented itself before Europe showing given to the secretariat of this organi- mic and transport axis in the EU’s trans-
king headway, not one who—having all of its cultural, national and linguistic sation, whose headquarters are to be in European network.
failed to do their duty and make the diversity. In Convergència, and indeed Barcelona, its statutes must be appro-
necessary sacrifices in previous years— in all the Catalan political parties in ge- ved, and above all, a very specific pro-
are amongst those who are looking neral, we consider that this would be gramme of objectives needs to be drawn 〜 by Artur Mas, President
forward to recovery not in 2010, but the ideal moment to take the necessa- up that would allow us to move towards of Convergència Democratica de
in 2011... at best. ry steps for Catalan—as well as Basque the long-desired goal of a Mediterranean Catalonia (CDC)
March 2010 | ELDR News n°5 | www.eldr.eu Page 2
Italy / Europe – Hope & New ELDR Bureau
Concern At the 30th Congress of the European Liberal Democrats in Barcelona, Annemie Neyts MEP, was re-elected as President
of the ELDR Party to serve her third mandate. 4 out of 7 Vice Presidents were also elected.
Italia dei Valori : “the ELDR Council in Rome in March is Incumbent Vice President Markus Löning from the German FDP was re-elected. Leoluca Orlando MP and member of Italia
dei Valori was newly elected as were Lousewies Van Der Laan from the Dutch D66 and Marc Guerrero from the Catalan
an occasion to focus the European attention on Italy” Liberals CDC. Treasurer David Griffiths from the British Liberal Democrats was re-elected for his second term.
annemie Neyts Uyttebroeck Sharon Bowles
MEP (Open VLD, Belgium) MEP (Lib Dems, UK)
The ELDR Council will take place in muzzle journalists considered to be
Rome on 12th and 13th March. “source of embarrassment” for the
It will certainly be an occasion for us at
Italia dei Valori to welcome the ELDR The secularism of the country is jeo-
delegations and to confirm firstly the pardized by the pandemic clericalism,
importance of Italy taking part in the the bribery and the privileges bargai-
European integration process secon- ned between Berlusconi and his go-
dly ; to have the European community vernment on the one hand and some
focused on Italian issues ahead of our of the representatives of the Vatican
regional elections and thirdly to put on the other.
forward again our considerable sup-
port to the European liberal and de- Italy needs to rescue itself from this VICE-PRESIDENT VICE-PRESIDENT
mocrat party. majority in the Government that has Lena ek Marc guerrero
approved the 19th “ad personam law”, MEP (Centerpartiet, Sweden) (CDC, Catalonia)
Following and supporting with enthu- tailored to help the Premier avoid
siasm the revolutionary idea of the corruption trials, evasion and other
European Union, IDV is working throu- charges linked to his activities as an
gh a delicate period with two diffe- entrepreneur.
rent moods arising : a wish/hope and
a concern. Other voices of opposition clearly exist
in Italy, although they have not always
Italy and Italia dei Valori’s hope is been effective in opposing Berlusconi’s
sorting out all the problems caused governments as Italia dei Valori is
by Berlusconi’s government and the doing now. IDV should be saluted as
degeneration of internal politics, by the legitimate torch bearer of Italian
finding support in the European poli- democracy.
We are certain that without High Court, Until here I have just talked about
Europe and an intransigent political hopes.
opposition, Italian democracy will be Here we come to the concern. VICE-PRESIDENT VICE-PRESIDENT
dead and the rule of law irreparably The concern is that the entwining tenta- Markus Löning Leoluca Orlando
manipulated. cle of the Berlusconi model could spread (FDP, Germany) MP (Italia dei Valori, Italy)
Italia dei Valori is the only party to have to other European countries whereby
deeply understood the terminal situa- one person becomes so powerful and
tion experienced by democratic insti- has too much influence over politicians
tutions in the Bel Paese. both from the governing majority as
I am strongly convinced that the well as influencing the opposition.
country needs to get out of the mind-
set of Berlusconi’s politics and his way The ELDR Council in Rome is an occasion
of insulting and constantly interfering to focus the European attention on Italy
with lawsuits in the internal affairs of and to promote European initiatives at
the Italian High Court, Superior Council level local and vice versa in order to
of the Judiciary and the Parliament. reaffirm the rule of law in Italy.
In Italy there is too much government
interference in the market ; too much
conflict of interest ; too many attempts 〜 by Leoluca orlando,
to limit the freedom of press and to Vice President ELDR, MP of IDV VICE-PRESIDENT VICE-PRESIDENT
Vesna Pusic Lousewies van der Laan
MP and President of ELWN (HNS, Croatia) (D66, The Netherlands)
eLDR Party aisbl
european Liberal, Democrat and Reform Party
Parti européen des Libéraux, Démocrates et Réformateurs
Rue Montoyerstraat 31, 1000 Brussels
Tel. 02 237 01 40 - Fax 02 231 19 07
Editor : Chiara Puletti
Publisher : Federica Sabbati
Lay-out and impression : Trinôme
Published with the suppport of the European Parliament.
Printed on recycled paper
(Lib Dems, UK)
March 2010 | ELDR News n°5 | www.eldr.eu Page 3
Liberals lay down their Strategic 2012 vs. 2020
Plan 2009-2014 End of the world or new
Pioneering and progressive as an alternative to more intervention
rity which particularly covers financial
European strategy ?
institutions with cross-border activity According to the Mayan calendar the Liberal ideas such as “Knowledge throu-
“Better regulation not more interven- world is set to end in 2012. gh education”, “research and innova-
tion” is the way forward. tion in industry” ; “Creativity and the
For those not subscribing to that parti- skills to empower people” will repre-
The proposed EU 2020 strategy, which is cular theory an alternative date for re- sent the soul of the new European po-
intended to replace the Lisbon Strategy newal is 2020 and the EU’s new strate- litical approach.
that was to make the EU the most com- gy designed to reinvigorate the Union’s
petitive economy in the world, is also economy and labour market. This means ensuring that our economy
a priority for Europe’s liberal demo- is based on knowledge sharing and free
crats with the crisis highlighting more The EU 2020 is not about astrology and trade through targeting our research
than ever the need to ensure econo- oracles : it’s all about how to and innovation budgets to
mic growth, jobs and competitiveness improve our life style, to this end. This also means
based on a low carbon and resource- implement an original promoting a competiti-
efficient economy. More integrated and way to live in Europe, ve and green econo-
legally binding instruments will howe- to enjoy Europe my in view of ma-
ver be necessary if the 2020 Strategy is and to behave as king better use of
to succeed where the Lisbon Strategy Europeans. resources and using
has failed. the material inputs
The program- in the economy
Climate chan- me proposed more efficiently.
ge is not just a by the European
topical issue for Commission contains To address the so-
the duration of many liberal policies. cio-economic emer-
the Copenhagen gencies arising from
summit and the First of all the text foresees the global crisis in finan-
points that po- a new professional cycle -- it will not cial markets, the EU will adopt the vir-
Following in the footsteps of ELDR’s These issues have liticians agree be the usual path of school- training- tuous circle of ”inventions-investments-
Barcelona programme, the Liberal been identified on in Denmark job and finally collecting your pen- new applications” designed to sustain
Democrat Group in the European as key areas by must be fol- sion. There will be no such linear or- a new economic approach.
Parliament sent to the 27 commissioners- liberal democrat lowed up with der job-mobility, life-long-learning and
designate the priority areas for each com- parliamentarians actions. Europe’s an entrepreneurial culture will repla- The 2020 EU Strategy is a map of how
missioner to address over the next 5 year who, thanks to the implementation of liberal democrats are calling for in- ce the ancient features of the “seden- our future could be.
Commission term in view of their hea- the Lisbon Treaty, now have greater in- creased investment from the European tary folks”.
rings before the European Parliament. fluence over the Union’s policy formu- Union and its Member States in techno- Without the European institutions,
lation and more sway in discussions logies that will ensure energy efficien- Studying for three+two years in the the Parliament and the European
The priorities are as follows : with the European Commission and the cy, sustainability and security of supply, same college will become extremely Commission along with the support
• Tackling the economic and financial European Council in ensuring a more and facilitate the move to a low carbon démodé as will postgraduate study in and the network of European political
crisis by a sustainable recovery ; ambitious direction for the European economy. In fact ELDR calls on the EU ones own native language. parties, nobody will put Europe on the
• Rethinking the budget and introdu- project. to take ever stronger steps in pionee- right track towards a common pers-
cing real own resources ; ring environmental policy. Allowing an employee to work at home pective in the recovery from the finan-
• Tackling climate change seriously As agreed in Barcelona European libe- will be a reasonable arrangement un- cial crisis.
with an environmentally integrated rals will continue to put the empha- There is a lot to be done over the next til becoming quite normal.
society ; sis on maintaining free and open mar- 5 years and European liberal demo- In his masterpiece Candide, Voltaire
• Fighting for freedom and fundamen- kets and creating a stronger EU Single crats will promote a progressive pro- With a simple short text or an email, concludes that, if not outright rejec-
tal rights ; Market. Furthermore, a concrete action European agenda, taking into account European citizens will be able to get in ting optimism, advocating an enigma-
• Promoting a coherent Europe strate- to undertake is the implementation of the genuine interests of the Union and touch with their local politicians, their tic precept, « we must cultivate our gar-
gy in the world. a European financial supervisory autho- its citizens. mayors, councillors as well as their den », in lieu of the Leibnizian mantra
European Commissioners and MEPs. of Pangloss, « all is for the best in the
best of all possible worlds ».
A proactive attitude towards entrepre-
“Money talks but credit has an echo“ neurialism along with increased capaci-
ty for innovation will be the flywheel of
As a European political party we should
constantly make sure that we are wor-
Bob thaves European industry, supported by natio- king for the best possible EU that we
nal and European government. can achieve.
Investing in digital broadband for a
Money doesn’t sleep 100% European territory coverage will
be one of the key priorities of the new
Anonymous Internet Provider system promoted by 〜 by Chiara Puletti,
the Commission. ELDR
An EU Common Market for Co2
Liberals committed to tackling climate change
But we should not dwell in the past. As liberals, office, we also need to be wary of how he uses was the parliament that pushed for many of tho-
it is important to look ahead towards the futu- this system. It is worrying that he, during his hea- se ambitious targets in the climate package, and
re. With the Climate Package in place, Europe ring, opened up for more free allowances. we can do it again.
has moved forward with our part of the solution.
Even though it is not yet enough, the ambitious Secondly, the EU should immediately start wor- A liberal environmental policy must be based on
targets, that were promoted by liberals in the king on creating a common market for CO2 with market solutions and incentives. It is possible to
European Parliament, in the Commission, and in the rest of the world. The ALDE group has there- make money by being green. The ingrained self-
the Council, will enhance European competitive- fore put forward a proposal to integrate the emer- interest of people is huge. If policy is created with
ness and make our continent greener. ging American ETS with the European scheme. A the aim of creating markets ; people and business
transatlantic market for CO2 would be the start of will follow. However, green policy is based on our
To m ov e f o r w a rd i n te r n a t i o n a l l y, w e a global market. recognition of our social responsibility. Sustainable
should focus our efforts on three fronts : growth is necessary for keeping the planet intact
Firstly, we need to seriously commit ourselves to Thirdly, the EU needs to speak with one voice in for future generations. With liberal climate policy
Shortly before Christmas the world’s leaders ga- the Emissions Trading System (ETS). An ETS that is climate negotiations. It would be unthinkable to we will enhance the possibilities for people to im-
thered in Copenhagen with the ambitious tar- working is of crucial importance to our ability to negotiate a WTO-trade round without the EU pre- prove their own situation. It is green jobs that will
get of saving our planet from climate change. At combat global warming, and at the same time pro- sent, but this is exactly what happened during take us into the future.
the same time, the somewhat tarnished reputa- mote growth. But the price of CO2 must be stabi- the last hours in Copenhagen when the US and
tion of the UN process was supposed to be re- lized in order to make the ETS effective. European China created the Copenhagen Accord. The new
established. However, as we all know, the out- governments and the EU therefore need to stop gi- powers of the parliament under the Lisbon treaty
come of the meeting was a disappointment on ving out free allowances. With the newly appoin- will mean that the parliament will be represented 〜 by Lena Ek, MEP and ELDR
both accounts. ted Commissioner for Industry, Antonio Tajani, in in the upcoming negotiations. Remember that it Vice-President, Sweden
March 2010 | ELDR News n°5 | www.eldr.eu Page 4
SPECIAL oN DAtA PRotECtIoN
EU SWIFt agreement with US authorities
The question of SWIFT first the data collected was used purely for anti-terrorist purposes.
arose in 2006 when the me- In July 2009, media articles appeared saying that a new agree-
dia revealed that the US ad- ment was to be negotiated following a change in the struc-
ministration was accessing ture of the SWIFT company, which is building a new storage
data held by the Belgium- centre for its European data in Switzerland.
based financial network At the end of November 2009 European Union countries
SWIFT on European citizens agreed on the deal that would allow the United States conti-
without their knowledge. nued access to European citizens’ financial transaction data
Following pressure by the for anti-terror investigations.
European Parliament, gua- The agreement states that the US will not be allowed to share
rantees regarding privacy European data with third countries, and transactions between
were given to ensure that EU countries will not be monitored.
our liberal angles
Mrs Jeanine Hennis- Plasschaert (aLDe, The Netherlands) Baroness Sarah Ludford (aLDe, UK)
3. The SWIFT agreement would give the same rights as they would have if 3. What will be the role of the
the authorities in the eU the right to their personal data stayed at home. For Parliament on the issue : an acti-
look at data on bank transfers sto- instance, in the case of SWIFT MEPs take ve player or a silent observer of the
red on US servers and to use them issue with the length of time the data Commission’s decisions ?
to track down terrorist networks, can be kept, the lack of clear enforcea-
a right the US authorities already ble rights to correct data or get compen- The Parliament is now a co-lawmaker
have. sation for misuse, the failure to define with the Council on international agree-
under what conditions other agencies ments in that it has the power under
The interim-agreement (art 8) only pro- can get access, allowing the data to be the Lisbon treaty of approving them.
vides for a possibility for law enforce- onward transferred to third countries wi- On the question of the SWIFT agree-
ment, public security, or counter ter- thout guarantees, and the absence of li- ment we are therefore extremely acti-
rorism authorities of the EU Member mits on bulk transfer of data. ve, as we always have been on privacy
States, or Europol or Eurojust, to request matters. The EP Civil Liberties commit-
a search for relevant information obtai- ALDE MEPs have played a leading role tee has now voted to reject the interim
ned through the TFTP, if they determi- in recent years in calling for a binding, agreement and we will see what hap-
ne that there is reason to believe that high-standard international agreement : pens next. Since there are other chan-
a person or entity has a nexus to ter- naturally we want as much as possible of nels whereby the information on terro-
rorism as defined in Articles 1 to 4 of EU tried-and-tested data protection law rist financing can be obtained, so there
Council Framework Decision 2002/475/ to figure in that and for our national and will not be a « security gap », although
1. aLDe requests that before nego- JHA as amended by Council Framework 1. Sarah Ludford (aLDe, UK), you said European privacy watchdogs to be ful- speed is still desirable, especially in a
tiating any international agreement Decision 2008/919/JHA. that before negotiating any interna- ly involved in monitoring. It would be response from the Council in promising
the eU should itself establish an « ac- tional agreement, the eU should it- a mistake to think that data protection a better long-term deal.
ceptable » personal data protection Art 9 of the agreement speaks about self establish an « acceptable » per- hinders police and security work. It in
system. What does an “acceptable possible future developments : « In the sonal data protection system. What fact increases the chances of fruitful coo- It is clear that the way the whole issue
system” mean for a liberal ? event that an EU system equivalent to does an “acceptable system” mean peration by increasing trust and confi- has been handled by the Council has
the U.S. TFTP is implemented in the for a liberal ? dence, including public confidence. in fact been dire, ignoring all our long-
Fundamental rights are non-negotiable European Union or in one or more of standing submissions on the content of
and cannot, in any event, be circums- its Member States…. ». Again, as sta- The ‘normal’ European data protection 2. The eU will ensure “full recipro- the agreement, failing to send the si-
cribed. When limitations are introdu- ted above : no reciprocity ! ! legislation – a 1995 Directive 95/46 - city” in access to european and US gned agreement to Parliament quickly
ced in the name of so-called security, applies to data held in the EU by most SWIFT data files. Do you think re- for our consideration, refusing us es-
the terrorists achieve their objectives. 4. For you, what is the ultimate aim public agencies and private firms, and ciprocity is conceivable, especial- sential information, delaying sending
It is imperative that we find solutions of the new agreement ? there has been a special regime deve- ly with the new clamp down of us the draft negotiating guidelines for
to the real threats posed by terrorism loped to ensure adequacy of safeguards the Obama administration against the long-term agreement and general-
without compromising the very essen- At all times it should be clear that the if it is transferred to a third country terrorism ? ly failing to treat us as a partner as the
ce of our societies built on fundamental security of European citizens will not like the US. But when commercial data Lisbon treaty requires.
rights and freedoms. Fighting terrorists be compromised nor will the protec- like SWIFT’s on banking transactions It is in the strong interests of the US and
and criminals is perfectly possible while tions their private data. The targeted are delivered across the Atlantic for the EU to treat each other as full par- We of course strongly support the effort
ensuring the utmost respect for privacy exchange and use of data for counter- counter-terrorism purposes, this secu- tners in both the fight against terrorism to catch terrorists and improve public
and data protection. Liberal Democrats terrorism purposes is and will remain re regime gets discarded. Not even the and the upholding of human rights & ci- safety. The Parliament’s role is to ques-
is convinced that without key principles necessary. However, the public must weaker framework imposed by EU go- vil liberties including data protection. tion if the agreement is proportionate
such as necessity and proportionality be able to have trust in both, data and vernments for information exchanged Thus full reciprocity in targeted access to this aim and the best tool available,
the fight against terrorism will never security claims. by European police and prosecutors ap- to each other’s data and in the respect and raise valid queries about data se-
be effective. plies automatically. This is clearly dee- we give fundamental rights should be curity and privacy. As I said earlier, our
5. What will be the role of the ply unsatisfactory and this segregated the goal. We completely share the ob- aim is security with liberty, not at the
2. The eU will ensure “full recipro- Parliament on the issue : an acti- approach will have to change under the jective of combating terrorists while not expense of liberty.
city” in access to european and US ve player or a silent observer of the rules of the new Lisbon treaty. sacrificing our democratic values, and
SWIFT data files. Do you think re- Commission’s decisions ? thank goodness President Obama has 5. What will be the role of the aLDe
ciprocity is conceivable, especial- But in the meantime, international made that abundantly clear. There has group and the liberals in the civil li-
ly with the new clamp down of If it is up to ALDE, the European agreements on law enforcement coo- been an imbalance in the flow of data, berties committee ?
the Obama administration against Parliament will definitely not be a si- peration like SWIFT have an ad hoc set because the EU does not have arran-
terrorism ? lent observer. of rules which, while offering some pro- gements like the US ‘Terrorist Financial European Liberals & Democrats have
tection, do not give citizens anything like Tracking Programme’ for which it wants always been at the forefront, as I have
Reciprocity in the SWIFT-case is nothing the SWIFT data, or an EU system to col- been for ten years, in demanding ef-
but a hollow phrase. There is no reci- lect Passenger Name Records (PNR). If fective cross-border and transatlantic
procity. EU Member States claim « that we do set them up we should expect cooperation on crime and terrorism
it is in the EU’s interest to ensure the reciprocal cooperation, and indeed the but also in questioning the need for
sustainability of the TFTP notwithstan- SWIFT Agreement would give the autho- massive surveillance and data sharing
ding SWIFT’s new architecture, and thus rities in the EU the right to look at data which impacts so hard on the freedom
to ensure legal certainty for the trans- on bank transfers stored on US-based of citizens. We have also been very vo-
fer of relevant data to the US Treasury computers in the investigation of terro- cal in demanding the full disclosure to
Department, as Member State Services rist networks. But first we have to consi- MEPs by the Council and Commission
have been the main beneficiaries of der thoughtfully whether all this mass of documents on the SWIFT and other
TFTP leads ». surveillance is really the right way to agreements and measures, since the
go or whether it diverts resources from Parliament cannot exercise its role as
That is not reciprocity but outsourcing other law enforcement and anti-terro- co-legislator without access to all the
of EU counter-terrorism policy. rism tasks. relevant information.
March 2010 | ELDR News n°5 | www.eldr.eu Page 5
FDP – sceptical about Financial data agreement What happens next ?
(SWIFt) rejected by the Eu- For us liberals, who have constantly Despite this rejection, neither SWIFT
new European committee ropean Parliament been leading this issue in the European
A s env is a g e d a l rea d y o n 10 t h
Parliament, it is first and foremost very
important to stress that contrary to po-
nor privacy issues at large are natural-
ly not completely off the agenda. The
same fundamental underlying princi-
to fight terrorism February through the background
note on the ELDR website (www.eldr.
eu), the European Parliament in its
pulist propaganda, this rejection does
not in any way jeopardize the security of
European citizens – rather the contrary.
ples that initiated the deal in the first
place are still valid and still in need of
proper action. In the European Union
Risk of duplication, inefficiencies and waste of money plenary vote in Strasbourg on 11th decision-making machinery, this means
February followed the recommenda- As can be learned from the adjacent passing on the ball to the European
German liberal party FDP has branded For the German Federal Government tion of Dutch VVD MEP and rapporteur joint interview with two liberal MEPs Commission for reconsideration and
the formation of a new EU counter ter- and in particular for the liberal party Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert as well as on top of this issue, the SWIFT agree- re-drafting of a proposal that could
rorism body as unnecessary. FDP in the coalition, the measures are the Parliament’s Civil Liberties (LIBE) ment is after all only one of the available balance the concerns of Council and
The Spanish socialist government of unnecessary. committee and rejected the interim means for targeted trans-Atlantic data Parliament.
José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero holding There is already coordination between so called SWIFT agreement by 378 vo- exchange. With the final status of SWIFT
the rotating EU presidency confirmed police and security services at European tes to 196. still pending, the monitoring process The liberals hope that the Parliament’s
the idea to enforce the creation of a level and the FDP considers that the might well temporarily become a bit rejection of the deal by a comfortable
committee of counter-terrorism coor- creation of another coordination body This means that the deal, which was more complicated – but in this case that majority will now be a strong enou-
dination centers (CCCAT). might involve risks of duplication, agreed in the Council by the EU’s jus- is still prefered the alternative. Looking gh signal to pursue the Commission
The aim is the direct exchange, either inefficiencies, and the undermining of tice and home affairs ministers only beyond the short term effects, namely, to take a bold stance and prepare the
bilaterally or multilaterally, of strate- the requirements for the separation a day before the Lisbon Treaty ente- what European citizens do not need is a basis of a long-term agreement which
gic information on terrorist threats ; an between the police and intelligence red into force and which would have hasty agreement that lacks both trans- does not compromise on fundamen-
idea which is said to be supported by services. applied for nine months from 1st parency and reciprocity and is there- tal privacy rights for the European
the coordination centers in Belgium, February if only the Parliament had fore, as Hennis-Plasschaert concluded citizen.
France, the UK, Denmark, Germany, given its consent, will now have to be after the Parliament’s vote, “simply a
Italy, Portugal. scrapped and reconsidered. bad deal”.
Body scanners fever Body scanner
the debate on body scanners reappears after the Detroit incident - although they Siim Kallas asks the member states to wait for a com-
would have not been able to avoid it mon EU strategy
failed to detect such a small quantity of In his hearing before the European States already use body scanners in
explosive as the one used by the bom- Parliament’s Transport Committee, the absence of any common EU stan-
ber, as explained by a UK MP that has Commissioner-designate for Transport dards ». Commenting on the real effica-
extensive experience in the field. Thirdly Siim Kallas, discussed his views on cy of these machines Mr. Kallas replied :
and most fundamentally, Abdulmutallab the need for body-scanners for airli- « Body scanners can increase securi-
should not have been allowed to board ne security. ty, but no measure is 100% sure », ad-
the plane, at least without further and Condemning member states which ding that « body scanners are not the
in-depth controls or the assignment of have introduced airport body scan- panacea for airline security. » He no-
an air marshal, as he had been signaled ners without waiting for a common EU netheless insisted that people’s fears
by his father as an Islamic extremist to position, he said : « I am in favour of « must be addressed » and reiterated
US authorities. As Obama immediately a single EU regulation on body scan- that the EU should agree common ru-
said, “we failed to connect the dots” : ner. It is very bad that some Member les on the issue.
the information was there, the blacklists
are there, but the bomber was not on
them although he should have been the-
re. After all, the US terrorist lists appear
to be dangerously faulty if Ted Kennedy
The failed attempt by a Nigerian citi- posal on body scanners before the was on them, if an 8 year old US boy
zen, Umar Abdulmutallab, to use an ex- summer, accompanied by appropriate scout is on them, if controls can be easily
plosive device sewn in his underpants guarantees to ensure citizens’ privacy avoided by changing a name or misspel-
to blow up a plane from Amsterdam to and freedom. ling it on purpose and if 82.000 requests
Detroit has revived the debate on the In the meantime, EU Member States to be taken off them have been made.
use of body scanners at airports. But have gone down different paths. UK, These are the side-effects of the current
such debate is taking place today in an Finland and the Netherlands already had policy of relying on extensive data col-
irrational manner, under the pressure of body scanners installed, mostly in a trial lection and on technology, putting asi-
fear, without answering the real ques- phase, when the Commission came up de human intervention.
tions that should be addressed by law- with its proposal. After the Detroit inci- What we should learn from the Detroit
makers : what do we have to learn from dent, UK and the Netherlands have an- incident is that the application of cur-
the Detroit accident ? nounced that they will install more and rent policies should be reviewed and
Are body scanners the solution to ensure more body scanners at airports, whi- strengthened, to ensure the “connection
civil aviation security ? And more funda- le Italy will introduce them in 3 of its of the dots” ; that body scanners are not
mentally : how far do we want to go in airports. A EU-US summit in Toledo re- the solution to reach the dreamt 100 %
surrendering the fundamental right to cently approved a joint program to en- security and that they, should we decide
privacy in search of 100% security ? hance aviation security and body scan- to go for them, only be used on the basis
The issue of the possible use of body ners were debated as one of the main of risks (flights to / from targeted coun-
EU delays decision on
scanners had been harshly debated by goals. tries, like Israel, the US, etc) and if appro-
the European Parliament in October But such focus on body scanners seems priate guarantees are in place (right to
2008, when it criticized a proposal by out of place if we analyze the Detroit refuse it ; blurring and deletion of ima-
the Commission to allow at EU level such incident in its wider context, surroun- ges ; etc). Any other solution would reach
a method of screening passengers at ding the frequent declaration that had the aims of our enemies : transform de-
airports. In its resolution, the European the Netherlands used body scanners, mocracies into technocracies controlling
Parliament (EP) asked the Commission the bomber would have been stopped : every move of citizens. But this risk is
to come back with an evaluation report, consequently we need body scanners likely to remain even if we have body EU ministers agreed on Thursday 21 Germany, which has in the past been
made in consultation with relevant sta- in the EU. scanners - and why not digital finger- January to postpone the decision on the sceptical about body-scanners, is also stu-
keholders, addressing human rights and First of all, the Netherlands already uses prints ? - At shopping malls, universities, use of body-scanners, which produce a dying their use and could decide by mid-
privacy issues, health issues, costs and body scanners. And since 2008 they metro stations, etc. And probably it will nude picture of travellers ; although no 2010whether to introduce them, accor-
benefits. The EP considered that a tho- wanted to use them for flights to the be too late to denounce it. member states appear to be opposed ding to Germany’s de Maizière.
rough evaluation had to be done be- US, including transfer flights such as the outright to their use. Meanwhile the Italian government has
fore such a decision could be taken at one boarded by Abdulmutallab, but the The European Commission is currently already purchased 15 machines for
EU level. US authorities refused, as revealed by preparing a report on the health and pri- Malpensa Milan airport, Fiumicino-Rome
The European Commission’s report will the Dutch Minister of Interior in an in- vacy implications of such scanners, which airport and Venice airport but according
be published in the next few weeks. It terview so do they now want the enti- several member states are purchasing, to the Minister of Interior they are “still
also announced, after the Detroit acci- re EU to use them ? Secondly, had body 〜 by Marco Cappato, following a foiled attack on a flight from in the experimental stage”.
dent, that it will come up with a pro- scanners been used, they would have I Radicali Italiani (Italy) Amsterdam to Detroit at Christmas.
March 2010 | ELDR News n°5 | www.eldr.eu Page 6
Europe is our A Liberal single market for health care is
home : no visas possible
Lymec campaign goes on : ‘Mr Barroso, European Liberal Forum discusses the growing need for patients’ cross-country mobility
do you remember when you needed a
visa to come here ?’ What is the European Liberal Forum ?
The EU’s existing bu- Founded in the autumn of 2007, the European Liberal Forum, asbl (ELF) is the non-profit European political foundation of the liberal fa-
reaucratic visa poli- mily. ELF brings together liberal think thanks, political foundations and institutes from around Europe to observe, analyse and contri-
cies impose real bute to the debate on European public policy issues and the process of European integration, through education, training, research
difficulties and obs- and the promotion of active citizenship within the EU.
tacles to legitima-
te travel, be they
for tourism, studies insignificant, in particular as far as achievable In this fra-
or conferences. The effects and results are concerned. mework, the
reason for having a E u r o p e a n
visa system is to al- While single countries are trying to deve- C o m m i s s i o n ’s
lay fears about ille- lop their own response to such issues (not proposal for
gal migration and always encouraging best practice), patients a Health Care
cross border crime but the paradox is that it hits the ordina- and European citizens are already acting as Policy, published
ry travellers and young people the hardest. The long queues in a powerful lever towards the creation of a in July 2008, is
front of EU consulates as well as the unnecessarily lengthy, ex- European “solution”. Patients’ cross-country a fundamental
pensive, bureaucratic and upsetting visa procedures resulting mobility, especially related to those looking step along the
from this system create frustration and incomprehension from for high quality treatments, is growing. This path leading to
our European neighbours, especially young people. If we want to leads to developing a proper response, and at the organisation
work towards the further integration of our continent, we should the same time creates opportunities. of the European
try to build as many civil society bridges as possible between health polic y,
European countries, and this can only be achieved through free- There is the chance to make the healthcare and so are the
dom of movement. This is how LYMEC’s “Europe is our home : no sector a driving force for development as well initiatives that have been launched by the
visas” campaign all started, in the summer of 2006. as for social and economic progress, respec- Commission inside the “Europe for Patients”
ting the historical roots and shared aims that initiative. Similarly, a resolution adopted by
On February 13th 2007, young liberals from more than 20 are the legacy of European welfare. the ELDR party during the 2009 Barcelona
European countries organised street actions asking for visa li- Congress states the intention to propose to
beralisation for students and tourists - the first ever pan-European Demographic change, the demand for more Mobility of patients around Europe, seeking the European Commission a financing ar-
coordinated street action organised by LYMEC ! The event was wi- complex health care services and the rising better and highly specialised healthcare ser- rangement for a limited number of major
dely covered by local media. As a follow-up, LYMEC organised a costs of health care technologies have lead vices, is driving de-facto the creation of a European hospitals in order to pool and en-
conference at the European Parliament in March 2007, suppor- to the widespread appearance of new issues European single market for healthcare. These hance European expertise on specific health
ted by the ALDE Group, and held its first bilateral meeting with in all industrialised Countries. We face to- trends can be governed, and transformed as care issues.
Commissioner Olli Rehn on the issue. As part of the conferen- day financial issues (the funding of health- facilitators of development, or discouraged, by
ce, participants engaged in a performance protesting against care expenditure), organizational issues (the defending protectionism and National choices. The European health care market will proba-
visa obstacles to freedom of movement in Europe inside the allocation of scarce resources to prevention, Mobility, if well-organised, if oriented to the bly grow from those sectors where integra-
European Parliament. They formed a long visa queue inside the specialised care and long term care) and struc- defence of citizens’ rights, if linked with the tion has already started. The possibility of in-
parliament wearing t-shirts with signs ‘Life is to short to wait tural issues (the need for new investment in definition of a European research and invest- creasing networking can rely at first on clinical
for a visa’, ‘Mr Barroso, do you remember when you needed research and new technologies). The most ment plan, can act as a driving force for the research, technology and cures as driving for-
a visa to come here ?’ and ‘I needed a visa to come here, am I pertinent matter that every European country development of the future European health ces. In the sectors of research and highly spe-
that different ?’. The event was covered by the BBC. Later, the has to confront is, whether these issues are care system, and more. cialised treatment there is today room for the
campaign was presented to ELDR Prime Ministers by President linked to public finance constraints, or to in- creation of the first nucleus of the European
Annemie Neyts, and LYMEC was successful in passing a resolu- sufficient demand, that does not encourage Each Member State can seize the opportu- healthcare system.
tion titled « Europe is our home – no visas » at the ELDR congress investments in highly specialised treatments nities that the creation of the single health
of Berlin, in October 2007. or new technologies. care market offers : the achievements and To read more about the eLFs views on
the solutions implemented at the national european health care policy, please visit the
What is so special about this campaign ? For LYMEC, it was the Important choices can be made at national level are a key asset that cannot be wasted website www.liberalforum.eu or contact eLF
first time that we were conducting a fully-fledged pan-European and European level. The alternatives are not or dispersed. secretariat email@example.com.
campaign. Not only were some leaflets and a website produced
but we also liaised with the civil society, notably other European
youth organisations, organised street actions, produced press re-
leases, tabled resolutions at the ELDR congress, lobbied both the To get rich never risk your health. For it is the truth that health is the wealth of wealth.
European Parliament and European Commission, and we used
the new social media (Facebook notably) as a visibility levera-
ge. The other element that made this campaign a success was
certainly that it was very concrete for young Europeans – mobi-
lity is absolutely essential for young people today – and it had
a simple message, easy to understand. Liberal Health Care – Mission Possible
The campaign, now almost 4-year old, is however not finished. FDP Germany - the 36 year old Minister for Health pushes for a broad restruction
LYMEC decided to give it a new momentum this year, in the
context of the European Commission’s move to give Serbia, try that does not only have to serve more than wage labour costs — and the creation of a go-
Montenegro and Macedonia visa-free travel. The campaign 80 million people but that also faces an equal- vernment commission to study the possibility
wants to maintain the pressure for visa liberalisation vis-à-vis ly high number of people who know how to do of moving from income-based contributions
other European countries, in the Western Balkans but also in the job better. On top of it he’ll be under inten- to a flat-rate health insurance charge. Rösler
Eastern Europe : Moldova, Ukraine, Turkey, and the Caucasus. se pressure from a myriad of lobbyists : medi- hopes to restructure the health care system in
A number of technical requirements naturally have to be met cal insurers, doctors’ and patients’ groups, and Germany so that citizens will have more free-
by these countries, but no political criteria should be added to pharmaceutical companies. dom in choosing the types of treatment they
that, and there is in any case no reason for maintaining the receive, as well in choosing a physician and
existing burdensome and expensive visa procedures. Too often, Germany’s health care system is undoubtedly health insurance provider.
visa requests are denied for unclear reasons or visas are deli- of a high quality but must start dealing with
vered too late, this is unacceptable : yesterday’s horror stories exploding costs. Technological advances, new Today, Germans are among the top worldwi-
continue, but with different countries. Our campaign Facebook drugs and a burdensome bureaucracy have de with the number of annual doctor consul-
group has in the meantime reached more than 12.500 mem- Politics is changing in Germany. FDP politi- made health care costs skyrocket. Moreover, tations. More competition among insurance
bers and continues to grow, giving ever higher visibility and im- cian Philipp Rösler was appointed as the new Germany’s rapidly aging society is straining companies on the one hand and greater in-
pact to the campaign. Minister for Health in the German center-right the system to its breaking point. About 90% dividual responsibility and awareness of the
government of FDP and CDU/CSU. A doctor by of Germany’s population is covered by the patients on the other hand will also contri-
One of our members from Bosnia-Herzegovina was saying when profession – specialized in heart-chest surge- country’s public health insurance companies, bute to lowering costs. Tax adjustments will
we started the campaign : « Always, when I’m thinking about ry –, born in Vietnam and later adopted by a which are currently funded by contributions help those who can cover the required basic
that [visa restrictions to free travel for Bosnians], I remember German couple, Rösler is the first German na- from employers and employees. Today’s work- insurance.
my mother’s words : ‘before this stupid war we were really free. tional minister of non-European origin. At the force (and its employers) pays for the health
With our passports we could travel wherever and whenever we age of 36 Rösler is the epitome of the modern costs of those now retired, who are using the The start of liberal health reform will be tac-
wanted’. For most of my friends that is something totally un- FDP in the 21st century. system the most. With an aging population and kling not only the symptoms but the root causes
reachable ». Our mission as liberals is to tear down remaining decreasing birth rates across Europe, it leaves to ensure the long term viability of Germany’s
borders at every corner of our continent. The fight continues, With his humble, easy-to-approach demeanor he fewer people paying for the health care costs health care system.
and so does our campaign. is a far cry from the stereotypical politician. of ever more people.
He will require all his wit and ability not to sur- Rösler is expected to include a freeze on em- 〜 by Philipp Hansen,
〜 by Aloys Rigaut - President of LYMEC render to the influence of others to run a minis- ployer contributions — to unburden the non Political Advisor ELDR Party
March 2010 | ELDR News n°5 | www.eldr.eu Page 7
Being Liberals - Symbols & words
We asked our members what is the symbol and word best representing LIBERALISM…
MaaRTJe JaNSeN, FReDDy NeyTS, LUCIe WIgBOLDUS, SIBeL ReDzHeB,
D66, The Netherlands : President Open VLD Brussels City, Belgium : International Programme Officer, VVD, the International Relations Officer, Movement
Netherlands : for Rights and Freedoms, Bulgaria :
The symbol that best represents liberalism would The best (& the only) word that represents libe-
be a butterfly. It symbolizes freedom and there is ralism is....... ‘LIBERALISM’. Symbol : bird or dolphin (freedom), ladder into the Word - TOGETHERNESS
a different word for it in nearly every language sky (you have the opportunities, but you have to
(papillon, vlinder, schmetterling etc.). HeNNINg NIeLSeN, climb yourself) Symbol - Olive branch
Radikale Venstre, Denmark :
The word would be “FREEDOM”, although this is Word : EqUIVALENCE and of course………FREEDOM aLOyS RIgaUT,
not a very original word we think it’s simply the We have no suggestions to symbol and & RESPONSIBILITY President of LyMeC :
best word to symbolize liberalism. word. In fact we generally are not in favor of
« uniforms ». geORgeTa VaSILe, Symbol : Bird.
ROy KRaMeR, International Relations, PNL, Romania :
Press Officer D66, The Netherlands : LUKa gLUšaC, Word : Freedom.
Istrian Democratic assembly, Croatia : Symbol - « dove » (the feeling of freedom)
Difficult to say in ONE word. Can I also suggest RaIMONDaS IMBRaSaS,
things like : “PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS” ? Thank you for give me a chance to represent my Word - « INDIVIDUAL » Secretary general, Lithuanian Movement of
symbol and word whose best represent libera- the Republic of Lithuania :
DUSaN gaMSeR, lism around Europe. FRaNCIS BURSTIN,
International Secretary, LDP, Serbia : Intenrational Officer, MR, Belgium : The symbol is a man – celebrating humanity.
The ideal symbol of liberalism in Europe for me is EU
The dimension of uniting Europe (to which liberals flag. The EU is a big victory for the idea of liberalism Je pense que le symbole le plus fort qui représen- A (horse) shoe in a man’s hand – every man has
have been contributing so much) through peaceful for the whole mankind. Free traffic of people, mer- te le libéralisme est – comme illustré par Folon et his good fortune in his hands.
economic cooperation followed by relativization of chandise and money are making a base of peace and repris par le MR lors de son 150ème anniversaire
borders and inter-cultural exchange, as well as free prosper for Europe and the world in global. – un oiseau qui, toutes ailes déployées, s’élance An acoustic guitar – young at heart.
movement of people, goods, ideas, etc. has been dans un ciel bleu.
important to us and all the symbolism which would The word best representing liberalism in Europe is A Bowman with a bow and an arrow, arrow direc-
point out at it would be more than welcome by the for me is LIBERTY, FREEDOM of CHOICE to do what On pourrait aussi imaginer la statue de la liberté ted to the sky – reflects personal choices.
LDP. And, of course, for us as liberals, FREEDOM is I want to do, not what I must do. si cette image n’était pas trop américanisée !
the main value, both in its human and its economic We also believe that RESPONSIBILITY and HUMA-
dimension. We wish your team a successful work in SeaN O’CURNeeN CañaS, Pour moi, le mot qui colle le mieux au libéralis- NITY represents Liberalism best.
redesigning the ELDR image and have been ready President, CDL, Spain : me est LIBERTé.
for further contacts in the direction. Ceci n’est bien sûr qu’un avis personnel !
Just like Flexicurit y is a combination of
JOHaN-eRIK HaggMaN, Flexibility and Security, liberals can think RaLITza KOSTOVa,
european Commission : o f « F R E E S P O N S I B I L I T Y » (F r e e d o m a n d International Relations Officer, NMSP,
Responsibility) as their defining word, because Bulgaria :
The word that best represents liberalism is DI- it defines the pursuit to find a balance between
VERSITY. When it comes to the symbol I would rights and responsibilities. Our suggestion for a symbol that best represents
go for the bird that you already use or any flying liberalism is :
creature. « I believe AUTONOMY could work as it is the same
word in almost all languages. Horizon on skyline to describe the sense of
TOM MeULeNBeRg, freedom.
Party Spokesperson, Open VLD, Belgium : For me the difference between an individualist
and an autonomous person lies in the aware- Our suggestion for a word that best represents li-
It is difficult to choose a specific symbol but a ness of the autonomous person that he is part beralism is : FREEDOM.
hopeful image of free people would be a strong of a greater whole and as such carries responsi-
‘symbol’ for liberalism. bility as well. »
March 2010 | ELDR News n°5 | www.eldr.eu Page 8
De Magistris and the Saving the European Union
challenge of the post A guide to the European Union and its tricky functioning
rifying memoir, academic exercise in lity of the new treaty to address the
Berlusconi Era EU constitutional law or a mere cata-
logue of the changes that the Lisbon
treaty brings about.
new political and institutional chal-
lenges. Here starts a welcome exami-
nation of prejudices and myths that
In Giustizia e Potere IDV Italian MEP Luigi de Magistris* took ground in the political landsca-
While expanding the necessary context pe mainly in UK and Ireland. His ratio-
goes through the recent story of Italian politics to fully seize the potential of the new nal argumentation makes it clear that
text, Andrew Duff analyses how the an ill-informed overly eurosceptic ap-
“Giustizia e potere” (Justice and Power) “Thanks to Antonio Di Pietro I am now new treaty provides the EU with the proach can as a result lead to an im-
is a long interview made by Sergio part of Italia dei Valori which I consider a tools to more efficiently tackle new portant decrease of influence in the EU
Nazzaro, an Italian author and journa- party with many chances to succeed first important challenges encountered at on matters that are of vital influence
list, with Luigi De Magistris, former pu- as the only competitor able to gather a home and abroad. He explains his mis- to both countries.
blic prosecutor focused on links between real apposition power and second as a sion in the following way : “European
mafia and politics. solid alternative for the country”. Union treaties are quite complicated Next Duff turns to major policy fields
and yet terribly important, especially that the new treaty transforms : na-
“The book is all about my life, the public The magistrate goes back over his child- for a European Union legislator to un- mely EU action abroad and justice and
aspects as well as my past as a magis- hood, his father who was himself a ma- derstand explain and try to justify”. home affairs. The new text clearly pro-
trate and now an MEP, gistrate. Then the sto- vides for more coherent and visible ex-
in school, books and ry goes on recalling de He explains that, despite somewhat ternal action with the new European
music ; and finally my Magistris’ primordial pro- byzantine structure, the treaty retains External Action Service in the hands
political commitment. fessional ambition : col- In 2007 Andrew Duff, one of the three most of the achievements proposed by of the new external policy chief. The
A large part is devoted laborating actively for delegates of the European Parliament the Constitutional Treaty, including the author draws particular attention to the
to the enquiries led by an effective change of to the Convention designed to salvage status of the Charter of Fundamental major innovation of structured, perma-
De Magistris as a public society, more honest the ill-fated EU Constitution, published Human rights. It breathes in more de- nent cooperation that would allow for
prosecutor and his ca- and free and fair, “sim- his True Guide to the Lisbon treaty. mocratic principles, by promoting invol- the establishment of a more effective
reful consideration over ply more compassiona- vement and participation of citizens in European defence policy. In addition
Berlusconi’s Era (almost te than the current one”. At the time it was the first compre- its democratic life, strengthening the to that, in the field of freedom, secu-
16 uninterrupted years of “I would actually like to hensive yet very condensed guide for powers of the European Parliament, rity and justice by the definitive abo-
government ; the second see the definitive decline understanding the innovations brou- fostering European political parties, lishment of Maastricht’s pillar structu-
longest-serving Prime of the Berlusconi Era and ght about by the new treaty from while increasing the transparency of re, Lisbon brings more efficient tools
Minister of Italy and lon- the rising of new young a practical point of view. His latest the decision-making process and poli- notably in combating organized cri-
gest-serving current lea- leaders”. book Saving the European Union is a tical accountability of its actors. me and ensuring a common immigra-
der of a G8 country). very welcome extension of this guide. tion policy.
In the pattern of the Italian Nineties li- Contrary to usual publications by the Following chapters are useful expla-
The interview goes through different dis- beral tradition he revives his engage- actors of the EU constitutional histo- nation of the distribution of compe-
positions : the sorrow about being trans- ment with his favourite motto : “Oggi ry, his book is certainly not a self-glo- tencies as well as of increased flexibi-
ferred to a different Court by the former per sognare, ogni giorno per cambia-
Minister of Justice, Clemente Mastella, re” (Today for dreaming, every day for
because De Magistris had allegedly re- moving).
vealed Mastella’s name as well as tho-
se of other Italian politicians apparent-
ly involved in his investigations ; and the
European liberals at the 30th ELDR
hopeful expectations of his election as
member of the European Parliament and
as member of Italia dei Valori.
*Luigi de Magistris scored the second highest
number of votes amongst all Italian candi-
dates in the last European elections.
Congress in Barcelona last November…
european liberals upcoming events 2010
〜 25 February liberal breakfast, ELDR Hq, Brussels, Belgium
〜 26-27 February FNST/ALDE PACE/ ELDR Eastern Partnership, Berlin
〜 12-13 March ELDR Council Meeting in Rome, Italy
〜 5 March ELDR Prime Ministers meeting, Concert Noble, 82 rue d’Arlon,
1040 Brussels, Belgium
〜 Sat 17 april ELF-ELDR-FNF workshop liberal survey, Prague, Czech Republic Working Group Plenary Elisabeta Petrova Graf Lambsdorf, ELF president
〜 24-25 april FDP : National Party Congress in Cologne, Germany
〜 april National parliamentary elections in Hungary
〜 30 april - 1st May LYMEC congress, Sinaia, Romania
〜 May Regional parliamentary elections in Northrhine-Westphalia,
〜 28 May 128th VVD Congress, Papendal, The Netherlands
〜 May National parliamentary elections in the UK (tbc)
〜 June Liberal breakfast, ELDR Hq, Brussels, Belgium
〜 June National parliamentary elections in Czech Republic
〜 12 June National parliamentary elections in Slovakia
〜 7 June ELDR Leaders meeting, Concert Noble, 82 rue d’Arlon, 1040
1 Reynders, Mas Vassiliou, Roche Congratulations Ladies delegation
〜 end august – early September ELF-ELDR Liberal Academy, Brussels
〜 September Liberal Breakfast, ELDR Hq
〜 19 September National parliamentary elections in Sweden
〜 2 October National parliamentary elections in Latvia
〜 13 –15 October ELDR Congress 2010, Helsinki, Finland
〜 8 October ELDR Prime Ministers meeting, Concert Noble, 82 rue d’Arlon,
1040 Brussels, Belgium
〜 6 December ELDR Leaders meeting, Concert Noble, 82 rue d’Arlon, 1040
Final results Abdoul Diallo, CoR Vasile, Petrova, Loening Finnish delegation