German minister appeals for European unity amid challenges

BERLIN: The German Foreign Minister called on European countries on Saturday to join in the face of global challenges such as climate change and migration, arguing that unilateral national action is not enough.

In an opinion article published in 26 EU countries when Germany addresses a week of commemorations commemorating the anniversary of the fall of November 9, 1989, Heiko Maas said that the events of 30 years ago meant the end of the Decades division of Germany. during the Cold War

But he said that the fall of the wall did not happen in a vacuum and that Germany should thank not only the hundreds of thousands of East Germans who peacefully protested against the communist regime, but also democracy activists in other countries such as Poland, Czechoslovakia and Hungary, and leaders from both sides of the ideological division that paved the way for German reunification.

German unity was also a gift from Europe to Germany, at the end of a century in which the Germans had brought unimaginable suffering to this continent, he wrote.

"This gives rise to an obligation for us, namely to complete the project that is the unification of Europe — building a Europe that lives up to the values and dreams of those who took to the streets in 1989 to fight for freedom and democracy ."

He noted that Germany assumes the rotating presidency of the European Union next year when Britain prepares to leave, the first country to leave the block, and how to save the euro and the endless dispute over the entry and distribution of refugees have opened new divisions between EU nations.

At the same time, Maas said, more people turn to populist parties with nationalist agendas, who believe that less Europe is better for us.

Instead, he urged greater cooperation, saying that none of us can face the four main global challenges: globalization, climate change, digital transformation and migration, by ourselves.

The exhortations of individual European capitals fall on deaf ears in Moscow , Beijing and, unfortunately, more and more in Washington, DC, Maas said. It is only the voice of Europe that has a decisive weight.