XXIV UEF European Congress

15-17 November 2013

From 15-17 November 2013 the XXIV Congress of the Union of European Federalists was held at the premises of the German Federal Foreign Ministry. Berlin was an important rendez-vous for the European federalist movement.

Towards Federal Union

Guido Westerwelle, Foreign Minister of Germany, opened the Congress with a keynote speech on the future of the European Union and the role of Germany in Europe. He thanked the Federalists for their long work. "You have always backed the European idea, even in times of crisis".

The UEF Congress elected a new UEF President. In his last speech as President of the Union of European Federalists (UEF), Andrew Duff MEP urges the federal movement to fight back against David Cameron's 'defeatist' prospectus for a weak, loose confederation of nation states. "What Europe really lacks, as the crisis has exposed, is a properly accountable and effective European government. Executive authority in the EU is 'opaque and diffuse'," Duff said. For the future of the Union to be assured, its citizens have to know who's in charge.

With an inspiring speech against Anti-EU-Populism Elmar Brok convinced an audience of over 200 delegates from all over Europe, who elected him as the successor of MEP Andrew Duff. "Those speaking against the EU and call for the revival of the Nation are not eurosceptics, but anti-historians. Nationalism has never resolved any international challenge," claimed Brok.

Through a video message, the President of the European Commission, Jose Manuel Barroso, thanked Andrew Duff for his work during the last five years. Referring to the debate on the European project Barroso emphasised: "Where there is movement, there is resistance. We must keep on moving".

The Congress adopted the Manifesto "Towards Federal Union". The debate was inspired by the publication over the summer of the Fundamental Law of the European Union, drafted by the Spinelli Group of MEPs under the direction of Andrew Duff. The Manifesto promotes a democratic government in a future European Union.