Eu/mediterranean States: Call for Civil Society to Play Bigger Role in Euromed Partnership

Article excerpt

The final declaration adopted by members of the Euromed Civil Forum says: "It is urgent that civil society should contribute through its analysis and proposals to a deepening of the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership, the results of which are at best contrasted at the political, economic, social, cultural and environmental levels, requiring a re-launch or even an overhaul of the Euromed partnership". Recalling that they have not sought to add their own version to the numerous existing reviews of the Barcelona Process, civil society representatives indicate that it could only be "very reserved regarding the effective results of the partnership on democratisation, human rights, peace, development and environmental protection in the region".

They propose that the EU and the Mediterranean partners should establish an action plan for permanent consultation of civil society, to be presented to Euromed heads of state and government at the end of November in Barcelona. This action plan should guarantee rapid access for civil society representatives to all information or documentation liable to be of interest, so they can react at any moment. Civil society experts should also be integrated in planning of the various EU policies for Mediterranean countries.

Civil Forum members also demand a regular dialogue with the European Commission and Euromed committees and the establishment of thematic working groups (human rights, the environment, culture, migration, youth, women and development) involving civil society representatives and regular exchanges with MEPs. …