Home » today » Business » K. Sakellaropoulou from Delphi Forum: What he said about Ukraine, Gaza, climate – 2024-04-13 00:24:26

K. Sakellaropoulou from Delphi Forum: What he said about Ukraine, Gaza, climate – 2024-04-13 00:24:26

“Greece participates equally in the developments at the European, regional and international level. It shares the common values ​​that Europe embodies and actively strives for their promotion and deepening”, emphasized the President of the Republic Katerina Sakellaropoulou during her opening speech at the 9th Delphi Economic Forum.

The President of the Republic spoke of an international institution that has now become a point of reference for Greece and not only, she noted that this year’s event, with the central theme of the “Great Transition”, takes place in an environment of intense geopolitical realignments and challenges, not only for Europe, but for the whole world.

“Greece, entrenched democracy”

Referring to Greece, she underlined that “As a country with an entrenched democracy and a proven commitment to the United Europe, it plays a leading role in supporting the accession process of the Western Balkans and in upgrading the political and economic cooperation of all the countries of the Eastern Mediterranean and Southeastern Europe”. However, he pointed out that “A condition for this, of course, is the unwavering respect, by all states in the region, of the principles of the rule of law, human rights, as well as good neighborly relations and international law.”

Half a century of democracy

He also asserted that “We are already going through half a century of democracy without wavering, an achievement that we should neither forget nor ignore” and added that “The Post-colonialism is an unprecedented period of democratic smoothness and progress, in which, despite the multifaceted and serious crises , democratic institutions and the rule of law have shown enviable resilience.”

As he said, “This period is inextricably linked with our EU membership, as the European perspective and the horizon of unification have been the driving force behind our path to peace, security and prosperity. Against the background of this not-so-obvious conquest, we must move into the future with maturity and self-confidence” and emphasized that “Our liberal democracy is consolidated and strong enough to withstand any shock. It welcomes reflection and listens to criticism, while remaining our unsurpassed political and social horizon.”

The war in Ukraine

Regarding geopolitical realignments and challenges, not only for Europe, but for the whole world, he noted that “The ongoing war in Ukraine, apart from a flagrant violation of the United Nations Charter and international law in general, remains a serious threat to the European security and global stability. The European Union responded with unity, speed and determination, with coordinated actions. Greece has practically supported all joint efforts to provide assistance to the Ukrainian people, until a comprehensive, just and lasting peace is achieved, with full respect for the independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine, within its internationally recognized borders. For this reason, our support must continue without objection and delay, as it is the main means of deterring Russian aggression and revisionism.”

The war in Gaza

On the armed conflict in the Middle East, following the terrorist attack by Hamas, he stated that “the resulting humanitarian crisis in Gaza which is unfortunately intensifying, the turmoil prevailing in the Red Sea with its effects on international trade and navigation, as well as the risk of spillover into war with incalculable consequences, are a dramatic reminder that peace cannot be taken for granted. The current situation and serious geopolitical crises underline the importance of the EU’s energy and strategic autonomy, as well as its enlargement, especially towards the Western Balkans. Europe must be able to intervene actively, with a single voice, in international affairs, decide on its future, alliances and composition and defend, by its own means, its interests, therefore its very existence” .

Climate change

Then, he pointed out that “Another important challenge facing the EU that concerns us all is climate change, which has already reached crisis and “state of emergency” dimensions. Temperature records are being set all the time, which should be alarming. Especially the Mediterranean, a “hotspot of climate change” as scientists call it, is dramatically affected, reminiscent of the canary in the coal mine. The natural disasters, such as fires and floods that are increasingly affecting the region, and the consequent degradation of the environment, foreshadow the ominous developments that are imminent everywhere.”

He reminded, in fact, that “In a joint appeal with other heads of Mediterranean states of the Arraiolos group, last summer, we emphasized that there is no more time to lose and that all the countries of the Mediterranean must participate in a collective effort to reverse the effects of climate crisis. The matter is urgent and there is an immediate need for effective action. In this effort we cannot be alone. The EU must act boldly, with unity, and solidarity, taking appropriate measures, while focusing on protecting the most vulnerable citizens, who are naturally disproportionately affected by them.”

Precision in food

He then emphasized that “Europe is also facing an energy crisis and food insecurity, exacerbated by the war in Ukraine” and noted that “The rise in the cost of living, especially with the increase in food and energy prices, and overall due to the inflationary trends of the economy, it has certainly created reactions among citizens and categories of the population, such as farmers, which are instrumentalized by the populist political discourse”.

No to Euroscepticism

In particular, he underlined that “We must resist this attempt to discredit the EU with all our might, putting a barrier to the rise of Euroscepticism, in view of the upcoming elections for the European Parliament. Moreover, much of the effort to undermine the prestige and functioning of the EU, through the circulation of fake news, disinformation and propaganda, comes from illiberal regimes, which seek to distort and harm the democratic processes of the member states. Vigilance and vigilance are therefore needed in order to fend off these attempts and that the displeasure does not take the form of a blanket rejection of the indisputable achievements of the European course so far”.

Answers to citizens

At the same time, he emphasized that “On the other hand, Europe must provide, in a clear and constructive way, which does not affect the European acquis, solutions and answers to citizens’ concerns, whether they concern the fair transition to the digital and green era, or the management of migration and refugee flows”.

The security of the EU’s external borders

As he noted, “The security of Europe’s external borders is a priority, but it must go hand in hand with our duty to ensure the supreme good of human life, showing the necessary solidarity to the countries that are asked to shoulder the main burden of their protection. The immigration issue is not only a matter for certain states, but for the entire European family, which, in close cooperation with third states, must deal with it, while remaining faithful to the ideals it advocates.”

Civil Rights and AI

Speaking about the field of artificial intelligence, he underlined that “the EU is called upon to guarantee the fundamental rights of citizens and businesses, without, however, “missing the train” of the future and the enormous possibilities it offers. The adoption of the Regulation on Artificial Intelligence is a positive first step in safeguarding human autonomy, security and democracy, as well as limiting the risks posed by technological development in this area.”

The 33rd Olympic Games

Finally, he said that “in a few months, the 33rd Olympic Games will be held in Paris, the most important sporting event at the world level, which began about three millennia ago in ancient Olympia and which carries, even in its newer version, the message of reconciliation of the peoples, of peace and noble rivalry”, he reminded that “This year marks 20 years since the return of the games to their birthplace, in a perfect organization that was engraved in the memory of the whole world” and ended by saying that “It is the wish of all of us that their upcoming event should take place in the same spirit, of peace and Olympism”.

#Sakellaropoulou #Delphi #Forum #Ukraine #Gaza #climate

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