Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2002-06-11-Speech-2-028"

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"Mr President, I would like to ask for your forgiveness since the Convention on the future of Europe is going to change things, as it is going to mean many meetings and much effort, but we will get there if we make that effort and if we are willing to talk, and that is what I wanted to do, by saying the following: We all have an interest in there being a constructive relationship between the European Union and the Arab Maghreb Union, but surely that constructive relationship must be based on a whole range of aspects, including political ones. If the Union wishes to act correctly on an international level, that action must be based on conflict prevention and crisis management and regrettably there is an historic conflict in the Maghreb region involving several countries and peoples which has not gone away: the Sahara conflict. The positive thing about the report presented by Mr Morillon and Mr Cohn-Bendit is firstly that it acknowledges the existence of that conflict, something which the European Union had not done for many years. This conflict was not on the Union’s agenda. This conflict must now appear on that agenda as a priority so that we can contribute, on the basis of international law, to the quest for a fair and negotiated solution which safeguards the rights of the peoples, beginning with the Saharaoui people’s right to self-determination and so that we can thereby put an end to an issue which causes great instability in terms of the future of the Arab Maghreb Union and the countries it consists of. In this respect, the situation is still regrettably deadlocked and it falls to the European Union to apply pressure so that it ceases to be so, and to apply pressure in a good sense, because it would benefit the region and would benefit Europe."@en1

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