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Conference at Brigham Young University (Utah) | Europe at a Crossroads    

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February 7 2019

_"The EU is not suffering a 'growth crisis', but a risk of destruction" 

_“The 2019 European Parliamentary Election are the most important we have held so far”

_"The social crisis footprint continues to backfire in Europe, and populist parties have capitalized its political and electoral effects"

_"I do no suggest less or more Europe, I suggest a possible Europe. And the European Union without its transatlantic component is not conceivable" 

The former President of the Government and President of the FAES Foundation, José María Aznar, has travelled to the city of Provo (Utah), where he has been invited to give a lecture to the students of the David M. Kennedy Center for International Studies at Brigham Young University. 


In his speech, entitled 'Europe at the crossroads', Aznar stated that "2019 will bring the most important challenges for the European Union", given that "to the concern about terrorism and the management of immigration, we must add the departure from the United Kingdom and, above all, the elections to the European Parliament, the most important ones that we have held so far". "The EU is at a crossroads. It can no longer be said to be suffering a 'growth crisis', but a risk of destruction," he added.

In his opinion, "one of the greatest threats to Europe are its internal vulnerabilities, mainly populism". "We can overcome the recession, but the social footprint left by the crisis continues to backfire in Europe", lamented the former president of the government, for whom "the credibility of the democratic and representative process and of the institutions has been eroded, as well as their capacity to generate prosperity and create opportunities". "The populist parties have capitalised on their political and electoral effects", he stressed.

The Atlantic Alliance

"In reality, Europe is a miracle of evolution," Aznar told numerous American students. "We were able to benefit from the continent's longest period of peace and an endless culture of prosperity. We created the European Union. Unfortunately, material achievements have not been accompanied by greater responsibility in the management of the world," he recalled. In this sense, he pointed out that "in reality, in the present circumstances, it is even less likely that European nations will accept to play an important role on the international scene".

In response, he said, "I propose not less or more Europe, but a possible Europe". "We can complete the banking union, promote free trade, carry out reforms and have a common energy policy, but the European Union without its transatlantic component is not conceivable", said Aznar, who defended that "the Atlantic Alliance was one of the most important events of the second half of the 20th century and one of the main reasons why that second half was much better than the first".

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