Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2007-05-09-Speech-3-102"

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"I should like to congratulate Mr Rocard on his outstanding report which, in my view, is much-needed, both for the Arab world and for Europe. I believe the need for this report can be seen from the way that in recent years, not only in the USA but also in Europe, there has been a certain blinkered tendency to view the Arab and Islamic world simply in terms of the fight against terrorism. Whilst European-Arab relations must take account of the fight against terrorism, they must also take account of issues such as economic and social development, employment, the proper management of public affairs, the strengthening of civil society, the concept of human rights, and intercultural and inter-faith exchange and dialogue. European-Arab relations should be based on genuine dialogue on a level playing field without feelings of superiority or inferiority being generated. Dialogue and partnership with the EU could in my view be targeted more at cooperation with the Arab world as a whole. In other words, in addition to bilateral relations, we should also focus on specific organisations, some of which have already been mentioned, such as the League of Arab States, the Persian Gulf Cooperation Council and the Arab Maghreb Union. Lastly, because we are here in the European Parliament, I should also like to emphasise the role played by the Euro-Mediterranean Parliamentary Assembly (EMPA) as a democratic body bringing together members of parliament from both sides of the Mediterranean. The EMPA should in my opinion play a much greater role, including attempting to resolve the Arab-Israel conflict."@en1

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