Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2008-03-26-Speech-3-033"

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"Mr President, Mr President of the Commission, Mr President-in-Office, sometimes subjects which appear to be quite unrelated are in fact inextricably linked. When we talk about climate change, we talk about migration, and when we talk about migration, we also talk about the Mediterranean Union. It becomes apparent that issues are often strongly interconnected and so the right solutions have to be found. However, Mrs Harms, this means that we need to try to find a proper balance in each subject area, for on the issue of climate change, for example, the action we take must not produce any undesired effects which could have social consequences. That is why a balance must be found in industry too, so that developments can proceed in a rational way. I view the Mediterranean Union as a key issue and I believe it is important to bring more pressure to bear here, in the interests of security and economic development in these regions. It is in our own interest to forge a more effective and more intensive policy towards the Mediterranean. Similarly, however, we should strengthen our neighbourhood policy – which after all is the basis for all these policies – towards our Eastern European neighbours. We must find ways of offering these countries in the Mediterranean and Eastern Europe – especially if, like Ukraine, they have a prospect of joining the European Union – the opportunity to complete the domestic developments that are important for these countries. I would add that it is also in our security interests if these countries benefit from better social conditions, more democracy and the rule of law. However, this policy is a responsibility that is incumbent on the European Union as a whole. Just as Germany must take on responsibility for Morocco in the Mediterranean region, so too must Spain take on responsibility for Ukraine. That is why we cannot have a situation in which some countries participate, as originally envisaged, and others do not. This is a policy to be pursued by the European Union as a whole. Mr President of the Commission, you have, thankfully, been requested to deal with the details of the June summit. The Commission as a whole needs to take responsibility here. The European Parliament must also take on full responsibility; otherwise you will have budget problems. We must send out a clear message that the European Union is pursuing a unified foreign and security policy, and I would ask you once again to check that the Council presidency does indeed always act as the Council presidency and is not simply a separate rotating body from one Member State. This is one of the weaknesses still besetting the concept, to my mind, and I think it needs to be reviewed in order to arrive at a coherent solution."@en1

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