Press release: Success of the conference hinges critically on the meaningful inclusion of citizens and civil society in the process

The President of the Union of European Federalists (UEF), Sandro Gozi, welcomes the Franco-German non-paper on the Conference of the Future of Europe with a view to the upcoming Council meeting: “I am delighted to see the French and German governments placing the Conference on the Future of Europe firmly on the European agenda for the next Council meeting. Following a promising draft in the Constitutional Affairs Committee of the European Parliament, it is good to see that also the Member States recognise the urgent need for a relaunch of the European project. I also welcome that the Franco-German proposal foresees an open mandate for the Conference aimed at tangible reform proposals. We do not have the time for another inconclusive listening exercise. This open mandate will allow the members of the Conference to make all types of proposals they deem necessary to strengthen Europe, including treaty changes or a new treaty framework altogether where it is needed to give Europe the necessary competences, financing and effective governance tools.”

“The results of the Conference should however not only be presented as recommendations to the European Council as the Franco-German paper envisages. Instead, Member States must give a clear commitment from the start either to take forward the results in the framework of an Article 48 procedure or by a sub-set of member states where unanimity cannot be reached”, Gozi continues.

The President of the Young European Federalists, Leonie Martin, adds: “While decisions of the conference must be taken by participants with a democratic mandate, the success of the conference hinges critically on the meaningful inclusion of citizens and civil society in the process. Citizens know what they expect from Europe – we must be given a chance to express our demands! The Conference should therefore be supported by consulting organs composed of citizens and experts from civil society on different levels of technical detail, in Brussels, but also beyond the capitals!”

Sandro GOZI, president of the Union of European Federalists

Leonie MARTIN, president of the Young European Federalists

About JEF Europe

The Young European Federalists (JEF) Europe is a non-partisan youth NGO active with 13.000  members active in more than 30 countries. The organisation strives towards a federal Europe based on the principles of democracy and subsidiarity as well as respect for human rights. JEF promotes true European Citizenship, and works towards more active participation of young people in democratic life. While the umbrella organisation JEF Europe was founded in 1972, its sections have been operating continuously since the end of the Second World War, making it the oldest pro-European and only federalist youth organisation.

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