Athens, September 16, 2016/Independent Balkan News Agency
By Spiros Sideris
More voices are raised in Europe and the EU for the next day on the Old Continent, as the data in the Union regarding its future are not promising.
The sustainable economic and social development, immigration-refugee crisis, but also the major problem of unemployment, especially youth, were the issues discussed by the informal meeting of the presidents of the Parliaments of the Southern European countries held at noon in Strasbourg.
At the meeting, which was held in the conference room of Presidents of the Parliaments of the Member States of the Council of Europe, after a joint initiative of the President of the Greek Parliament, Nicolaos Voutsis, and the Speaker of the Italian Representatives Laura Boldrini, participated presidents of Parliaments of France, Spain, Cyprus, Malta and Portugal.
The Euro-Mediterranean meeting of presidents of Parliaments comes as a continuation of the session of the EU Mediterranean countries in Athens, which resulted in the Declaration of Athens co-signed by seven countries in southern Europe.
The joint statement of Presidents after the meeting
Statement to the Press
The Presidents of the House of Representatives of Cyprus, Dimitris Syllouris, the French National Assembly, Claude Bartoli, the Greek Parliament, Nicolaos Voutsis, the Italian House of Representatives, Laura Boldrini, the House of Representatives of Malta, Angelo Farrugia of the Portuguese Parliament , Eduardo Ferro Rodrigues, the Spanish Senate, Pio Garcia Eskudero Marketh informally meeting in Strasbourg on September 15 and discussed the numerous common challenges their countries are faced with, including migration and economic issues, and the need to join forces strengthening the European Union.
They agreed to further develop the priorities currently set at the level of heads of state in the direction of forming a joint agenda.
In parallel, they support joint initiatives to deepen cooperation at parliamentary level, like the ones that were recently received in Bratislava by the Presidents of the Parliamentary Foreign Affairs and Defense Committees.
The Presidents agreed to link all of the above and in the broader effort of the Declaration on “Greater European Integration: The Way Forward” signed by Presidents of 15 Parliamentary Assemblies 13 EU Member States
They agreed to meet again in the near future.