Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2007-05-09-Speech-3-084"

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". The row over the statue cannot be ignored. Today it was Europe Day. We are celebrating the European Union and the peace process which European integration has brought with it. There are, however, two sides to this day. For the Russians it is a celebration of victory in the Second World War. The moved statue is a symbol of this. For many of the present EU Member States, however, the celebration of victory, and the statue in Tallinn, symbolise the start of a long period of oppression in the Soviet Union. It is no wonder, then, that they wanted to remove the statue in Tallinn. You do not need to be a fascist to want to move a symbol of oppression which is still fresh in the mind. This is no longer a matter of Estonia’s internal affairs. Russia, and the stance it has taken with its ‘next-door neighbour policy’ have made the row over the statue a matter for the EU. We talk a lot about solidarity. It would be shameful of us to appeal to the agenda and put the matter off until the Strasbourg part-session. The rules have been made for us, not us for the rules. If we cannot deal with this right away because of the rules, I want the rules changed. We can make speeches about solidarity, but now it is time for action: ‘Estlands sak är vår sak!’"@en1

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