The European People’s Party (EPP) Political Assembly has concluded a two-day meeting in Copenhagen, at the invitation of EPP member party Det Konservative Folkeparti and its chairman, Søren Pape Poulsen.
The Political Assembly featured an in-depth debate on migration, with key speakers Danish Justice Minister Søren Pape Poulsen, First Deputy Speaker of the Swedish Parliament Tobias Billström and Director of Migration Dialogues and Cooperation Martijn Pluim.
Following the debate, EPP President Joseph Daul made the following statement:
“European citizens are expecting from the European centre-right long-term solutions to ensure their safety, notably by reinforcing the protection of the EU’s external borders. We need a comprehensive approach, ranging from trade to the economy to security, in order to tackle migration. Helping people in their regions of origin will allow us to fulfill our humanitarian obligations while at the same time preventing migrants from crossing the Mediterranean and drowning at sea. To this end, the EPP proposes an overhaul of the European asylum policy.”
In addition, EPP PA members adopted a position paper outlining the EPP’s vision on the future of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). Christian Schmidt, Germany’s Minister of Food and Agriculture, and Michel Dantin MEP co-authored the report and spearheaded the work as co-chairs of the EPP’s Ad hoc Working Group on the Future of the CAP. EPP President Daul said the following:
“European agriculture must be stronger, more sustainable and more innovative to meet the challenges of globalisation, climate change and food security. CAP has been and must continue to be at the heart of European integration. But CAP must evolve and become more efficient, simpler and fairer. The EPP’s vision for European agriculture is always guided by the well-being of farmers and the preservation of our environment.”
EPP members nominated EPP Vice-President Dara Murphy as Campaign Director for the 2019 European elections.
The EPP also accepted and welcomed a new observer member party, European Georgia, into its family.
Two resolutions were adopted by the political body: one on the situation in Belarus, the other on the democratic crisis in Venezuela. The EPP denounced the continuous breach of human rights and freedoms of the people of Belarus, in particular the recent mass arrests of civil society and opposition representatives, and calls on the immediate abolition of the death penalty. On Venezuela, the EPP insists on a return to constitutional order and democratic governance in the country and calls for a clear timetable for free and fair national elections.”
EPP members also held a minute of silence in memory of the victims of the recent terrorist attacks in Barcelona, Cambrils and Turku. And they observed a moment of silence in tribute to former German Chancellor Helmut Kohl.