Macron to Appeal for Renewal of EU Democracy

Macron to Appeal for Renewal of EU DemocracyMacron to Appeal for Renewal of EU Democracy

French President Emmanuel Macron will go to the Athens hill considered the birthplace of democracy to urge fellow Europeans to tackle the democratic crisis he believes the continent faces, his aides said on Tuesday.

Macron, who swept to power on a pro-EU platform last May, has made reforming the eurozone and EU institutions battered by a series of crises —from the economy, to immigration and Brexit— a priority of his mandate, Reuters reported.

“It’s a symbol of a new chapter (for Europe),” a French presidency official said of the speech Macron plans to give on Thursday evening on the hill of Pnyx, where ancient Greeks gathered to host popular assemblies.

“We have gone through a financial crisis and a sort of confidence crisis, Greece knows that, it suffered from them. The president wants to show that Europe must be rebuilt democratically,” the official said.

Macron will promote his campaign proposal to launch “democratic conventions” —or public debates— in European countries to discuss the future of the EU.

The president, whose popularity ratings have slumped at home following a series of unpopular measures including proposals to cut public spending and welfare benefits, also wants to make institutions governing Europe’s single currency more democratic.

He wants a euro zone finance minister to manage a common budget that would be accountable to a euro zone parliament, but that proposal has met with robust resistance abroad, notably in Berlin.

Add new comment

Read our comment policy before posting your viewpoints