Official remarks of H.E. Ambassador Fabrizi to Europe Day celebration, Belgrade, May 9, Museum of Contemporary Art:
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pravosuđa, akademske zajednice, civilnog društva i medija, biznis sektora,
Kolege iz diplomatskog kora,
Dragi prijatelji Evrope i Srbije,
Dame i gospodo,
Rebecca and I are delighted to welcome all of you to celebrate with us the birthday of Europe.
History reminds us that the European project was born in difficult circumstances, after devastation and suffering that brought Europe and the entire world to its knees.
Soon after the end of World War 2 the founders declared that war was no longer an option.
It was time for peace and lasting reconciliation between old enemies. Europe needed democracy, and economic and social development.
European Union did not happen without difficulties and setbacks. But – as Robert Schuman said on this very day in 1950 – “Europe will not be made all at once, or according to a single plan. It will be built through concrete achievements which first create a de facto solidarity.”
This visionary but pragmatic approach helped to make the last seven decades a success for Europe.
It restored a Europe free from devastating nationalism, the largest world economy and trade powerhouse; a beacon of democracy and freedom, a defender of human rights, a force that has reunited a divided continent, a shelter for those who leave their countries because of war and persecution, a leader against climate change and nuclear proliferation, a global security player.
Today, some seem to have doubts about the value of multilateralism and global cooperation;
some are tempted to solve our shared problems with shortcuts and unilateral actions.
barriers and divisions are presented as solutions; human rights and freedom are threatened around the world.
We – the European Union – will stand by our values and will defend a rules-based international system. We remain convinced that cooperation is better than conflict; that compromising is strength, not a weakness, that reconciliation is a good word.
Mr President, dear citizens of Serbia,
with the same openness and pragmatic spirit the European Union keeps its doors wide open to Serbia who has made the European Union its ultimate strategic objective, which goes well beyond a foreign policy goal.
Rather a transformational and generational change for the whole society.
Is a vote for sustainable prosperity, a choice for long lasting democracy and rule of law, a choice for common security.
2018 is the year of renewed commitment.
The European Union’s strategy for Western Balkans, the unprecedented number and level of visits in Serbia from the EU over the past few months, the upcoming Summit in Sofia, all reflect our strong belief in a credible enlargement perspective.
The European Union – as your friend and neighbor, as your first trade and investor partner, as your largest donor – salutes Serbia’s resolve to achieve the place it deserves in the future of the European family.
Serbia has made a number of important steps in this journey. More remain to be done.
I encourage Serbia to forge ahead and to translate this aim into further concrete and lasting steps.
In closing let me say that – in the year of European Cultural Heritage – we have called tonight on art to witness the strong bond between Europe and Serbia.
Thank to Director Nakarada for opening this beautiful place to us.
Thanks to all who helped to show the key projects we are carrying out with the major Serbian Institutions to support Serbian cultural heritage: the restorations of the the Golubac fortress the Bač Monastery, the Synagogue in Subotica, the Yougoslav Kinoteka, to name a few.
We need to treasure our common past to build a shared future.
Živela Evropa, Živela Srbija, i njena budućnost kao deo Evropske unije.