MEPs of Hungary’s ruling Fidesz have called on the European Parliament to promote European renewal while at the same time respecting the identity and traditions of nation states.
At the EP’s plenary session in Brussels on Thursday, Dubravka Šuica, the European Commissioner for Democracy and Demography, said the EC was ready to “play its part” in reviewing the EU Treaties, after a series of conferences on the bloc’s future where citizens’ recommendations were “given a central role”. Recent examples have shown that the “EU can deliver in areas not explicitly foreseen in the treaties,” she said. “We could go further … Europe could play a greater role in health and in defence and in some key areas where unanimity voting does not make sense, and we need to be able to move faster,” she said. “We have to find the most direct way to follow up … either by using the full limits of what can be done within the treaties, or, if needed, changing the treaties where necessary,” Šuica said.
Kinga Gál, the head of Fidesz’s EP delegation, in a statement called the conference series on the future of the EU a “farce of intolerant liberal hegemony of opinion, rather than a framework for the joint, free contemplation of the future of Europe”. European development can be founded only on renewal that does not seek to infringe on the identity, culture and traditions of nation states, the statement said. “We have an interest in building a more democratic and resilient Europe while respecting national autonomy,” she said.
In the same statement, MEP and former justice minister László Trócsányi said the European Union must restore trust by “acting professionally, and in consideration of the interests of member states”. “That cannot happen along the lines of pre-fabricated preconceptions aimed at centralisation, the curbing of national sovereignty or establishing a United States of Europe,” he said.
Trócsányi said the European Parliament’s consideration of a convention to revise the EU treaties was based on the “conclusions of a failed conference series fully lacking in legitimacy”. “We have participated in the debates in good faith because the future of Europe is truly important for us. We do not believe in centralisation or a Europe guided by ideology. We are drawn to European integration based on the cooperation of member states and respect for national identity,” he said.