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Speeches since 2019

11/10/2023 | 15:49:16 It's heart-wrenching to witness the anguish caused by terror, to feel the pain of families torn apart, and the agony of those whose children are held captive in Gaza. These horrors are beyond imagination, yet they are an ugly reality. These atrocities transcend the bounds of imagination, yet they are an inescapable reality. In the strongest of turns we must resolutely denounce the extremist Hamas for their unforgivably barbaric deeds. For many of us in this room, this horror and terror have... 12/10/2022 | 17:58:34 I believe the report itself has the answers to many of the points that were put here. But I want to make just two or three points. First of all, in this report, dear Chair – and I assume that most reports, all reports, that the Council of Europe makes – is to ensure the rights, the voices, the sense of justice, the protection of each and every one. In this case, of each and every Hungarian citizen. This is not against Hungary. This is in favour of each and every Hungarian citizen. That is... 12/10/2022 | 17:06:52 Thank you very much, after that very interesting debate. We change gears to Hungary. Hungary is a beautiful country with a proud people. In this report we evaluate the compliance of its government with the principles Hungary itself has signed on to those of the Council of Europe. But it also is intended for the benefit of the nation and people of Hungary, whose fate and decisions made by the government affect us all in our unified European family. Let me thank our colleagues from Hungary and... 11/10/2022 | 11:49:46 Thank you very much. First of all, let me thank all my colleagues for the warm support for this report and their comments. On the country-specific comments, the goal of this report is not to avoid the conflicts we have in the region, but to see how the Council of Europe can be a major player towards the resolution of these. The accession process and the reform process where the Council of Europe has a role can become a catalyst for solving these problems. Secondly, democracy, I believe, is... 11/10/2022 | 10:06:55 Thank you very much, Mister Chair. The Balkan Peninsula is a beautifully diverse region. However, many ethnic groups, minorities or even these small nascent countries themselves have often felt deep insecurity. Under despotic or authoritarian regimes, citizen felt oppressed, minorities excluded or persecuted, any sense of justice, equality, and freedom squashed. The imprint that this is left on our collective consciousness is that, when in trouble, we look for a big brother protector or... 15/03/2022 | 20:04:13 On February 24th, this war seemed to be but a bad dream, yet we woke up to a nightmare that was real when we believed we would never again see on this continent. The first reaction of many of us was a big "why?". Why such irrationality, megalomania, brutality, and fratricidal cold-blooded war? Then the "why" became a big "no". A "no" of indignation, a "no" to the lies and fake news, a "no" to the destruction of cities, a "no" to the unimaginable suffering, war crimes, deaths of innocent... 27/01/2022 | 19:09:26 (Undelivered speech, Rules of Procedure Art. 31.2) As today is the International Day of Commemoration in memory of the victims of the Holocaust, allow me to start with a phrase from the speech of the Secretary General of the UN António Guterres: “Our response to ignorance is education. We know that when young people learn about the Holocaust they can better understand the fragility of shared values and democratic institutions- particularly in times of social and economic upheaval”. And it is... 30/09/2021 | 12:11:49 Thank you, Mister Deputy Prime Minister, for this very important discussion. In 2003, in Thessaloniki, I had the honour, as Foreign Minister, to prepare the Summit between the Western Balkans and the European Union. We agreed on an historic document. I’ll read you the most salient points: “The EU reiterates its unequivocal support to the European perspective of the Western Balkan countries. The future of the Balkans is within the European Union. We all share the values of democracy, the rule... 29/09/2021 | 12:23:45 Dear colleagues, I watched with my compatriots with uttermost horror the devastating fires in my country this summer. They destroyed not only our habitats, but also some of the most beautiful and ancient forests in Greece. In a tragic symbolism, an ancient olive tree of 2,500 years survived and, being mentioned in ancient texts, went up in flames. So, our human rights and our civilisation will also go up in flames if we do not respect the rights of our species, the rights of our natural... 29/09/2021 | 09:53:52 Thank you Mr Chair, dear colleagues, In 2016, 99 citizens of Ireland were chosen, randomly, by lottery. They were given the power to call on experts, government officials, businesspersons, civil society NGOs and youth organisations. Their task: to come up with recommendations on how to make Ireland a leader in tackling the climate crisis. After extensive democratic deliberation, and almost 2,000 proposals from interested groups, they came up with 13 specific recommendations. Their work...