PES Europe ministers will push back against Rule of Law breaches

19/04/2021

PES Europe ministers meeting by videoconference

PES Europe ministers meeting by videoconference

Socialists and democrats will defend against any attempts by Member States to undermine the Rule of Law, ministers from the Party of European Socialists agreed today as they convened online to coordinate before the informal video conference of European affairs ministers tomorrow.

Finnish Minister for European Affairs and Ownership Steering, Tytti Tuppurainen, said:

“As social democrats, we have been very clear. We will not accept any attempts to undermine the Rule of Law.

“Recent developments in this area have been worrying. The situation in Poland and Hungary paints a bleak picture of the current state of fundamental rights in the Union, and other countries are not immune. And we are seeing very worrying attempts, across the EU to intimidate or harass journalists.

“We are determined to make sure the EU resists this planned and deliberate strategy from the extreme right to undermine the Rule of Law. For the future of our democracies, we must not allow this to go unchecked.”

The PES stands firmly behind strong action on the Rule of Law. Under the German presidency of the Council of the EU, progressives delivered a new EU instrument to protect and strengthen the Rule of Law. This remains a priority for the current Portuguese presidency.

The meeting also discussed COVID-19 and ministers expressed their determination to speed up vaccinations across Europe. The meeting welcomed European Commission proposals for a Digital Green Certificate as a necessary step towards regaining freedom of movement in the EU as we approach the summer.

Ministers also welcomed progress on the Conference on the Future of Europe, with Portuguese State Secretary for European Affairs, Ana Paula Zacarias, providing an update on the latest developments. Progressives stand firmly behind the Conference as a vital opportunity for citizens to guide the development of the European project.

The meeting was attended by:

  • Tytti Tuppurainen, meeting Chair, Minister for European Affairs and Ownership Steering, Finland
  • Vincenzo Amendola, Undersecretary of State, delegated to European Affairs, Italy
  • Ana Paula Zacarias, Secretary of State for European Affairs, Portugal
  • Juan González-Barba, State Secretary for the European Union, Spain
  • Hans Dahlgren, Minister for European Affairs, Sweden
  • Pedro Marques, Vice-President of the S&D Group, PES-S&D Coordinator for the implementation of the Commission Work Programme, PES / S&D