The heads of the lower houses of German, Italian, French and Luxembourg national parliaments called for enhanced European integration via creation of a Federal Union of States on the basis of the European Union, an open letter published on Sunday said.
“It is high time to move toward closer political integration — the Federal Union of States with broad powers. We know that such an initiative triggers a strong resistance, but someone’d inactivity cannot become a paralysis for everyone. Those who believe in European ideals, should be able to give them a new life instead of helplessly observing its slow sunset,” the letter published in the La Stampa newspaper read.
The letter, signed by Bundestag President Norbert Lammert, President of the French National Assembly Claude Bartolone, President of Italy’s Chamber of Deputies Laura Boldrini and speaker of Luxembourg Chamber of Deputies Mars di Bartolomeo, pointed out that other states would be able to join the federal union later.
The senior officials stressed in the letter that it was necessary to take action until it was too late, referring to the dramatic changes and challenges that the European Union had recently faced, in particular, Brexit and migration crisis.
They also suggested sharing sovereignty in the issues requiring joint approach, like combating climate change and terrorism, as well as in the energy sphere, finances and migration policy.
According to the open letter, the March 17 gathering of the EU parliaments’ heads in Rome to mark the 60th anniversary of the signing of the Treaties of Rome, laying ground to EU creation, will take place at the most critical moment the bloc has ever experienced. The lawmakers paid particular attention to the high unemployment level and rising inequality in many EU countries, inability of individual countries to work together to alleviate migration crisis, as well as a notable increase in citizens’ distrust in the authorities, which leads to rise in populist, nationalist and xenophobic movements.
In September 2015, Lammert, Bartolone, Boldrini and di Bartolomeo signed a document calling for a faster and deeper European integration to harmonize EU states’ foreign policies and make the alliance more democratic. The document pointed out the major role of national parliaments in improving EU structure and hinted at a possibility of creating the Federal Union of States.