Commemorating 70 Years of Victory over Nazi-Fascism
Unity in the struggle for peace and against fascism and war
13 May 2015 / 15.00h - 18.30h - EP BXL ROOM ASP 1G02
Opening: Neoklis Sylikiotis (Vice-President GUE/NGL)
First Panel: Marina Albiol
Resistance to the Nazi-fascism, the role of the Red Army, the communists and other democrats
Vladimir Rodin (CPRF - Russia)
Zdenek Ondracek (KSCM - Czech Republic)
Manfred Kays (Die Linke - Germany)
Ingars Burlaks (LSP - Latvia)
Marilia Villaverde Cabral (URAP - Portugal)
70 years after WW II, the offensive of extreme right, fascist and Nazi forces and the dangers of war
Mario Franssen (World Peace Council)
Ilda Figueiredo (CPPC - Portugal)
Petro Symonenko (CPU - Ukraine)
José Luís Centella (PCE - Spain)
Raphael Vahé (ARAC - France)
Saverio Ferrari (OSND - Italy)
Third Panel: João Ferreira
Historic revisionism, whitening fascism, the EU role
Nikos Kouzoupis (AKEL - Cyprus)
Tony Busselen (WPB - Belgium);
Pedro Guerreiro (PCP - Portugal)
For more information please contact:
GUE/NGL press contact: Gianfranco Battistini + 32 475 646628
TTIP compromise ignores public concerns
Supporters of a far-reaching trade agreement (TTIP) between the EU and the US won a majority in today's vote in the European Parliament's trade committee on a resolution on Parliament's demands on the on-going negotiations.
Helmut Scholz, shadow rapporteur for GUE/NGL parliamentary group, criticised this outcome: "Compromises agreed between rapporteur Lange (S&D group) and the conservative and liberal groups are deliberately ignoring the deep concerns raised during the broad public debate in many EU member states regarding the creation of a common transatlantic market."
He added: "The vast majority of people outside this Committee room reject investor-state-dispute-settlement (ISDS), but those MEPs in favour think they know better. In my opinion, it is arrogant that the amendments from the opinions of five other committees, including the legal affairs committee and the constitutional affairs committee, who asked to oppose ISDS, have been completely ignored, just like the 1.9 million EU citizens who already signed a petition against ISDS."
The trade committee also rejected demands to prevent the installation of a "regulatory cooperation council" in TTIP.
Dutch MEP Anne-Marie Mineur commented: "It is outrageous to see how some political groups are willing to give up parliamentary controls over future EU and member state legislation. With their support for mutual recognition of the different standards in the EU and the US and for a screening procedure for any new legislation regarding the impact on trade and investment, those MEPs are willing to give up parliamentary democracy for their almost religious belief in the promised benefits of free trade."
Italian MEP Eleonora Forenza explained: "TTIP will not create jobs; it is much more likely to destroy more than one million jobs in the EU due to increased competition. This is the result of several impact assessment studies and was confirmed by the chief economist in DG Trade. However, all our proposals to at least mention these figures were just voted down."
Other issues voted down were the demand for a "positive list" approach to safeguard public services and other sensitive services from liberalisation commitments, as demanded by the Committee of the Regions and several committees of the European Parliament.
"We will re-table crucial amendments for the plenary vote on June 10, and we sincerely hope that the majority in the house will vote differently from the majority in the trade committee." concluded Helmut Scholz. "MEPs should listen to the people in their constituencies."
EU leaders' next move may have repercussions for whole Eurozone
GUE/NGL MEP Dimitrios Papadimoulis has taken part in a European Parliament debate this afternoon on last week's informal European Council conclusions.
The Greek MEP said: "The response that the European Union, the Eurogroup, the Commission and the European Central Bank are going to give to the issues raised by the Greek government will act as a mirror; it will reflect how the Eurozone will tackle its own problems due to the unilateral austerity policies, which have failed."
He pointed out that in the past few years, investment had plummeted in the Eurozone resulting in economic stagnation and deflation, as well as the risk of another recession looming on the horizon.
"The Eurogroup has decided to give Greece some breathing space," he said. "This means it can make sure that the rules are being adhered to and that we can respect democracy. Of course we accept to honour our commitments. Of course we accept European solidarity to fight against corruption and tax evasion."
On the Juncker investment programme, he said it was important to make sure that "funds were channelled to those countries who needed them most, especially those with the highest unemployment rates".
And on Ukraine, MEP Papadimoulis referred to the peace agreement as "a small sapling that might dry out".
"We must continue to boost these peace efforts," he said.