In Sibiu, EU leaders look ahead to common future
EU leaders attending an informal summit in the Romanian city of Sibiu on May 9 adopted a declaration setting out ten commitments to reform in various areas and pledging to defend democracy and the rule of law, the RFE/RL reported.
In the absence of the UK prime minister, EU leaders discussed the bloc’s course after Britain’s departure. The meeting adopted the Sibiu Declaration – a 10-point statement, which was dubbed by some Brussels diplomats as the “10 Commandments” for the next EU Commission. The priorities include rule of law, internal security, and Europe’s global role.
“We will continue to protect our way of life, democracy, and the rule of law,” reads the declaration. “We will defend one Europe – from East to West, from North to South (...) We will stay united, through thick and thin.”
After adopting the statement, the leaders began discussions on a tentative “strategic agenda”, which could be discussed in more detail at a summit proposed for early June to discuss how election results will impact on the composition of the next EU Commission.
“The feeling of uncertainty can be overcome only if the EU acts jointly and European leadership sends a clear message it is committed to continue European integration,” Romania’s President Klaus Iohannis, the host of the meeting who is also a native and a former mayor of Sibiu, said before the summit.
The summit takes place just two weeks before European Parliament elections that could usher in a new wave of populist and Eurosceptic parties who could have a growing influence on the bloc’s decision-making.