French EU minister: "European unity is always questioned in times of crisis"
European affairs Secretary of State Laurence Boone participated today at the Bled Strategic Forum in Slovenia. She reconfirmed President Macron's pledge for a European Community.
Two speeches made the headlines today. On the German side, Chancellor Olaf Scholz highlighted his country’s priorities for Europe. France’s European affairs Secretary of State Laurence Boone participated to the Bled Strategic Forum, in Slovenia.
While the former will be covered later this week on The Beubble, you will find in the piece below a summary and analysis of Boone’s intervention in the Bled Forum.
Don’t forget to subscribe to The Beubble to receive a similar analysis of Chancellor Scholz’s intervention.
How many Europes in Europe?
Invited to participate in the panel on “How many Europes in Europe?”, the newly nominated Laurence Boone shared the stage with other European or Foreign affairs ministers, including José Manuel Albares Bueno, from Spain, Mevlüt Çavusoglu, from Türkiye, or Zbigniew Rau, from Poland.
The debate focused on Ukraine and the consequences of Russian aggression. Laurence Boone claimed, when asked to comment on Europe’s reaction to the aggression of Ukraine, that Europe acted better than most expected. She reminded participants that “European unity is always questioned in times of crisis,” but that it improves every time.
On energy strategy, she recognized that more unity could be found, and positively concluded that the Fit for 55 climate package was also a component of the EU’s answer to Russia.
Macron’s European Community
Laurence Boon came back to President Macron’s proposal of a European Community. She claimed that the inclusion of Europe’s immediate neighbors is key to safeguarding the Union’s safety and defense. Europe cannot be at peace if its neighbors do not share the values of a community.
She regret that Europe was “not creative enough” when it comes to the Western Balkans and the EU’s close neighbors. EU accession takes “a profound change of the institutions of a country” and Europe should have proposed greater cooperation with these countries.
She added that the conflict between Europe and Russia will also be fought on media, Rule of Law, and democratic values.
The panelists were asked for a brief concluding comment on climate change. France’s Laurence Boone said that unless the EU manages the energy transition well, it will face another economic and social crisis.
Finally, I want to shout out to Austria’s European and Foreign affair minister Alexander Schallenberg, who pitched the clearest definition of our time: with the return of war in Europe, “we have been kicked out of paradise, and that’s not nice.”