The founding partners of the Minority European Citizens Initiative have met the Minister-President of the German-speaking Community of Belgium yesterday, April 29, 2013 inBrussels. Mr. Karl-Heinz Lambertz declared in the meeting that he accepts the invitation to join the seven members of the Citizens Committee of the Minority ECI. The leader of the German-speaking Community inBelgiumexplained that the initiative is a huge chance for minorities to get European answers to their concerns.
The extensive autonomy of the German-speaking Community in Belgium is a role model within the EU. The community was able to consolidate its status after decades of struggle along the various phases of evolution of theBelgianFederalState. Today the community enjoys total autonomy, has its own parliament and its own government which manages the German autonomous territory.
Hans Heinrich Hansen, the president of the Federal Union of European Nationalities explained at the meeting, that the Citizens Committee of the Minority ECI is now almost complete, important personalities and more and more minority communities are joining the endeavour initiated by the Democratic Alliance of Hungarians inRomania, the organization representing the interests of the Hungarian Community inRomania.
László Borbély, the Vice-President of the Democratic Alliance of Hungarians inRomaniapraised the weight of the German Community taking into account that the Belgian Federal Government needs to get the approval of the German Community for every major decision. This is the European model of minority policy, a model providing decision making process through negotiation based on consensus. We would like the EU to recognize – beyond paying lip service to cultural and language diversity – that concrete measures need to be implemented urgently for the protection of minorities, the Vice-President added.
Loránt Vincze, International Secretary of the Democratic Alliance of Hungarians inRomaniatalked about the challenges the Minority Initiative will be facing after its registration with the European Commission. The minority solidarity is the engine of the initiative, during the one year long petition campaign, the smaller and larger minority communities of Europe will have to opportunity to put a joint pressure upon the EU, so that it takes the decisions asked by the minority communities, the International Secretary explained.
Jan Diedrichsen, the Director of the Federal Union of European Nationalities, announced that the first phase of the Citizens Initiative for the Minorities inEuropeis approaching its end, since the list of the seven members of the Founding Committee is now almost complete and the text of the Minority SafePack will also become final within a few days.