ITF EU Representative Dr. Hassan Aydinli attended the Spinelli Debate at the EU Parliament

April 13, 2013 at 11:52 pm | Posted in Turkmens | Leave a comment
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Spinelli debate photo of panel

Isabelle Durant,Vice-President of the European Parliament; Mahmud Gebril, Interim

prime minister of Libya during the civil war; Guy Verhofstadt, President of the ALDE

Group; Néguib Chebbi, Leader of the Democratic Progressive Party (Tunisia)

Has the Arab Spring failed ? Is Europe conspicuously absent ?

10.04.2013 – 18:00 – 20:00 European Parliament

Spinelli debate Arab flags
Néguib Chebbi, Leader of the Democratic Progressive Party (Tunisia)
Mahmud Gebril, Interim prime minister of Libya during the civil war and former chairman of the National Transition Council.
Daniel Cohn-Bendit, Spinelli MEP, Co-President of the Greens/EFA Group (absent)
Guy Verhofstadt, Spinelli MEP, President of the ALDE Group
Isabelle Durant, Spinelli MEP, Vice-President of the European Parliament

MEP Anna Gomez attended the Meeting.

The EU was taken by surprise when the Arab world awoke, as demonstrated by the uncoordinated national responses rather than a European response. This situation highlights the need for a better structured and more focused EU policy approach in order to participate to the emergence of a more stable and democratic Arab world.

Today the Arab world’s new political elites are facing the double challenge of satisfying popular pressure for democratic governance and an economic and social crisis. Have the Arab Spring protests calling for democracy and economic justice, just come and gone?

Spinelli debate full room

Full house for the Spinelli group debate at the EU Parliament in Brussels

The Chair, Mr. Guy Verhofstadt, opened the meeting by welcoming the Tunisian and Libyan guests. He said that Europe should engage more in the Arab world to help the Arab Spring.  He wished for cooperation with the countries around the Mediterranean and said: ‘Let’s create a great Mare Nostrum“.

Ms. Isabelle Durant, Vice-President of the European Parliament said that some call it an ‘Arab Winter’ but that change needs time. She said that revolution unites but that elections divide the people. Counter power is still missing, one must build for the next elections in order to consolidate democracy.

Mr. Mahmud Gebril said that Libya is still in the beginning of its revolution, he reminded the audience that the first 10 years of the French revolution were bloody. He said : We do not have a state yet, we are a stateless society, the tribal structure keeps the country together. In the three North African countries Tunisia, Libya and Egypt the new generation went to the street to have a better world, they have no ideology, they are defending Human Rights and democracy. A national dialogue is needed in the three countries, the EU can play a role. The EU influence in North Africa is diminishing, regrettably.  Illegal migration is a heavy burden on the EU. The African market is going to be the fastest growing market within the next 50 years.  Transfer of technology is important. The integration and participation of the youth is essential for the revolution to succeed. Regarding Syria he said that the Syrian people are paying a very heavy price, there are more than 4 million refugees. More unity is needed within the Syrian revolution, Assad should leave power, but people from the actual government who have no blood on their hands should be maintained. He added: if everybody is included there will be no extremism.

Mr. Néguib Chebbi thanked the EU for their moral support. He said that the economic model had failed under the dictatorial regime in Tunisia. The revolution in Tunisia is not an historical accident,  it is thanks to the young Tunisians that the revolution began. The youths who use new technologies to communicate such as internet and FB went to the street to demand better living conditions and the respect of their human rights. The revolution took the political parties by surprise.  He said he visited the young Tunisians in Lampedusa, he spoke with them and all they want is to work and have their share, therefore the political parties must guarantee the rights of the new generation. Mr. Néguib Chebbi said that the future of the EU and of North Africa is interdependent.

Dr. Hassan Aydinli spoke with MEP Ana Gomez, he updated her on the situation in Iraq and informed her of the latest attacks on the Turkmens.


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