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Debates
Tuesday, 13 December 2016 - Strasbourg Revised edition

14. Implementation of the Common Foreign and Security Policy (Article 36 TEU) (debate)
Video of the speeches
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  Tamás Meszerics, on behalf of the Verts/ALE Group . – Madam President, this is one of the yearly occasions when we should be able to talk about our global vision and our responses at the global scale. Nevertheless, I’m going to concentrate on a few more specific issues since this is not the first, and probably won’t be the last document dealing with our global strategy and its implementation.

First of all, let me thank the rapporteur for the exemplary work which as usual he put into the report, both in the draft and in the negotiations. We are glad to be able to be part of many of the compromises. The report rightly highlights the possibility and the wish and even, to some degree, the fact that Europe could be a diplomatic superpower. It is something that we should all strive for, and we agree that this is the goal, but there are quite a few steps along the way until we fully reach that potential. Just to mention one single example: the EU has more diplomatic representations around the globe than any of the Member States, but nevertheless so far we have been unable to pool even our consular functions. So the blocks that come are usually not from the other institutions, not from the European Parliament and not from the Council, but from the Member States. A diplomatic superpower should not speak with many different voices. We can only become a diplomatic superpower if we remain committed to an integrated and common foreign policy. For that we need to convince our Member States as well.

Secondly, I would like to mention the claims that we need significant defence capability development. We agree that we need to have power in order to be able to keep and foster peace around the world. That also requires power, we fully agree with that. We also agree that we are not there yet. We need further developments in this field. However, what we’re slightly worried about is the militarisation of foreign policy: that is something which needs to be avoided, and it needs to be avoided because a military policy cannot dictate the needs of diplomacy.

Last but not least, as the Vice President has already mentioned, the development policy needs to be an integrated one, fully agreed between all the institutions. This is something that requires primacy to be given to development and not to security.

 
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