The atrocities of the wars in Ukraine and Palestine remind us of the urgency of having a federal European government to be able to act on the international stage

Approved by UEF European Congress, Brussels, 26 November 2023

We are living in an international political context that brings us back to a time when conflict is once again a dramatic reality or a real and threatening possibility in many regions.

There are many sources of instability in entire regions: from Africa to South-East Asia, from Europe to the Middle East. A competitive multipolarism is being constructed in which continental actors struggle to create a new balance of power, based on their political ambitions.

It is also a system in which the clash between democracy and autocracy is beginning to shape international competition, and in which international institutions, starting with the UN, are severely weakened.

In this highly unstable context, security can no longer be taken for granted, and there is an urgent need for the European Union to untie the knots that prevent it both from being an authoritative and decisive international player in the emergence of the new order and from being autonomous in guaranteeing its own security.

Russia's war of aggression against Ukraine

Russia's armed aggression against Ukraine has triggered a global security crisis unprecedented since the end of World War II. Russia's imperialistic outlook and nationalist ideology are contaminating international relations and tend to recur in other areas of the world, fuelling tensions and triggering a multiplicity of potential conflicts.

The UEF, consistent with what it has maintained in all its statements, continues to believe that Ukraine's struggle of resistance is a struggle for the defence of the freedom of all Europe, and as such should be fully supported. That is why it considers it essential that granitic and convinced support for Ukraine is maintained, on all levels, including military and logistical. Just as maintaining economic and political pressure by all Member States in the Union against Russia remains essential.

We therefore believe that any diplomatic initiative to ease the Russian-Ukrainian conflict must include full recognition of Ukrainian sovereignty and respect for legitimate borders.

This is also crucial to support an international framework in which the law and diplomacy can prevail over the use of force in international disputes.

The EU should support Ukrainian reconstruction and follow closely the accession process of the country. For this reason, EU Treaties reform is an urgent and indispensable step, in order to be able to respond effectively to the enlargement challenges facing the new situation of a Union of more than 30 Member States in the near future.

The Middle East and the return of the war in Palestine.

The Israeli-Palestinian issue, since 2006 (the year of the Palestinian elections), has been confined to a regional issue and the international community has given up playing a role in building a credible path to peace. Since 2006, we have witnessed a crescendo of violence between Israel and Hamas (Operation Cast Lead in 2009, the major clashes in 2012, 2014, just to mention a few). This context paved the way for Hamas' operation last October.

This horrific terrorist attack on southern Israel, perpetrated by Hamas against unarmed civilians, through commando actions, kidnappings and rocket fire, constituted the most dramatic attack on Israel since the Yom Kippur War (1973) with a very high number of civilian casualties and the capture of a very high number of hostages. It is an act of terrorism, barbaric and criminal, aimed at making peace impossible and unleashing a crescendo of violence and destruction.

On the part of the State of Israel, also on the basis of its legitimate right to self-defence, we are instead witnessing the fall into the demonic trap created by Hamas. The war it is waging in Gaza, inevitably, and by Hamas' own will, is generating humanitarian catastrophe with thousands civilian victims (including children) that the international community cannot tolerate.

Therefore, the UEF, in the awareness that at this dramatic moment the merciless logic of war and the goal of annihilating the enemy have taken over, and the time table of arms prevails over everything, recalls the importance of a credible and extraordinary diplomatic initiative that creates the conditions for a humanitarian ceasefire and the release of hostages, also paving the way to the launch of an international conference to support a sustainable peace process.

Restoring peace in the area will require extraordinary efforts and vision. It is clear that it is necessary to put an end to the domination of Hamas in Gaza, which is a terrorist organisation - moreover part of a network of alliances fuelled by the ayatollahs' regime - that pursues the destruction of the State of Israel; a force that also crushes any democratic expression in the Palestinian population itself. What is also needed on Israel's part, however, is the respect of international law and the ability not to fall into the trap of extremism that foments hatred. If the conditions for peaceful coexistence are to be created, it is necessary to work towards a framework in which a future Palestinian state can consider entering into a pact of a federal nature with that of Israel, in order to share democratic institutions that can guarantee peace and the rights of all.

The UEF cannot at the same time fail to note how weak the UE's voice is at this juncture, and how cacophonous the reaction of European states has been until now. This is another reason why, if Europe really wants to contribute to the return of the possibility of peace, it must quickly equip itself with the decision-making and political mechanisms that will enable it to move on the international stage quickly and with a comprehensive common policy agenda, being represented by a true European government endowed with authority and autonomy in external action, generating a unique framework of European intervention that can influence global power relations.

In conclusion, in a new, highly fractured international scenario, where new regional and global powers demand to count on the international scene while new and old crises mark the horizon, we consider the construction of a strong common foreign and security policy, together with a solid pillar of civil protection capacity, crucial for the destiny of European unity and global stability.

That is why we support the launch of a Convention that opens the revision of the Treaties and is in continuity with the conclusions of the Conference on the Future of Europe and reflects the reforms envisaged in the AFCO Report on Proposals by the European Parliament on the amendment of the Treaties.