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Press release

The EU's Assembly of Regional and Local Representatives


Brussels, 8 May 2013

Europe Day: "In times of crisis Europe should be more united than ever"


On the occasion of Europe Day the Committee of the Regions President, Ramón Luis Valcárcel Siso, has underlined the key role played by the EU in achieving significant economic progress across Europe. On 9 May Mr Valcárcel will attend celebrations in the Spanish region of Murcia where he is President, and take part in an award ceremony for the drawing competition "My Home is Europe".

President Valcárcel believes that, "At times of crisis and economic difficulty Europe should be more united than ever, with a view to consolidating the commitment made more than 60 years ago to create a strong and competitive economic and political union for the benefit of all European citizens." The President has pointed out that, "On days like today European authorities at all levels of government should remind citizens of the important role played by the European venture in their lives and of the long road ahead."

The CoR President has highlighted that, "The EU is stepping up its efforts to deal with the crisis and restore economic prosperity. Special attention is being given to the high rates of youth unemployment and ways of tackling it." "Local and regional authorities will have a key role to play when policies to promote employment are drawn up," he added.

Another important issue and a reason for all to celebrate is the legal recognition of European citizenship and the rights that this entails. These include the right to move and reside freely in Europe, the right to petition the European Parliament, the right to organise and support citizens' initiatives proposing new EU legislative measures, and the right to apply to the European Ombudsman.

Europe Day in the Murcia region

The Murcia region's ministry for the presidency and Directorate-General for the European Union and External Relations, in cooperation with Murcia City Council, has organised various activities on 8-9 May to celebrate the 63rd anniversary of the Schuman declaration which was the basis for the European Union. The President will be attending an award ceremony for the painting competition "My Home is Europe", which is now in its twelfth year.

The activities taking place in Murcia are aimed at bringing the culture and history of other EU countries closer to Murcia's citizens, especially young people and children. They will also showcase the fundamental values underpinning European citizenship, such as justice, tolerance and democracy.

See the cultural and educational programme of events taking place in Murcia.

The Committee of the Regions

The Committee of the Regions is the EU's assembly of regional and local representatives. The mission of its 344 members from all 27 EU Member States is to involve regional and local authorities and the communities they represent in the EU's decision-making process and to inform them about EU policies. The European Commission, the European Parliament and the Council are obliged to consult the Committee in policy areas affecting regions and cities. It can appeal to the EU Court of Justice if its rights are infringed or it believes that an EU law infringes the subsidiarity principle or fails to respect regional or local powers.

Visit the CoR's website:

Follow us on Twitter: @EU_CoR

For more information, please contact:

Nieves Tejada Castro

Tel. 02 282 2239

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