The decision of Great Britain to exit the European Union should not be considered as a sign of the European Union falling apart, said Chairman of the Munich Security Conference, Wolfgang Ischinger, at the 13th Yalta European Strategy Annual Meeting (YES).
"One EU member decided to leave and we will see how difficult it is to start this process of divorce. I believe that it would be an absolute exaggeration to talk about the disintegration of the European Union. Many countries - beginning with Ukraine and including Germany and the USA - are being affected by issues, but we are not saying that Poland or Germany are falling apart," Mister Ischinger said.
At the same time, he acknowledged that the European Union’s structure will mean that it needs continued improvement.
Mister Ischinger also stressed that the EU countries did not manage to organise themselves and assume responsibility for solving global challenges; in particular, the issue of refugees from the Middle East.
"One thing that I find unfortunate is that the European Union has not been able to develop the self-confidence and the willingness to act as a team player for the world. The refugees that left the Middle East did not show up on the Red Square in Moscow, they also did not go to Pennsylvania Avenue, they came to Europe. It seemed that we failed to have the courage to act together and get everyone involved when things began to worsen a year ago. I applaud John Kerry’s and Sergey Lavrov’s attempts but we, as the European Union, should have taken the initiative and started the process," said Wolfgang Ischinger.
At the same time, former President of the European Parliament (2002-2004), Pat Cox, added that there should be no space for pessimism, but courage should be found to solve internal problems.
"We should not give in to pessimism just because we have problems. If the pessimism takes over us, the negative effects that have always been possible hypothetically, might become reality," concluded Cox.←Back to news list