June 24, 2019

European ministers conference rally before the EU elections

European Affairs ministers summit – Picture by Land NRW, Mark Hermenau.

Wednesday, 27 March 2019, Stadium Borussia Dortmund, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany: Under the pro tempore chairmanship of NRW Minister for Federal, European and International Affairs, Dr. Stephan Holthoff-Pförtner, hosted his colleagues and deputies in charge of European affairs to call for a stark participation at the elections for the European parliament taking place on 26 May, for a Europe of the “rule of law, freedom of the press and speech”.  

A panel discussion highlighting the significance and achievements of the European Union was moderated by Cherno Jobatey with the participation of Minister Dr. Stephan Holthoff-Pförtner, the Minister of Federal and European Affairs, and Regional Development of Lower Saxony, Birgit Honé as well as the European Affairs State Secretary of Rhineland-Palatinate, Heike Raab, former football player Sebastian Kehl, comedian Atze Schröder and student Ella Gemünd, a representative of the European Youth Parliament. 

Dr. Mark Speich, NRW European Affairs State Secretary – Picture by Land NRW, Uta Wagner.

The function at the Borussia stadium was unique because it brought together likewise representatives from the cross-border regions neighbouring Germany, hailing from The Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, France, Switzerland, Austria, Czechia, Poland and Denmark. 

On 28 March the European affairs ministers reconvened for a second round of high-level discussions surrounding Brexit. Additional guests included Dr. Friedrich Merz, Commissioner of NRW State Government for Brexit, and Axel Dittmann, Brexit-coordinator at the German Foreign Office. 

Parallel to the ministerial summit, the NRW State Secretary for European Affairs, Dr. Mark Speich served as host to the initiative “Europa – Erleben und Lernen” (To learn and interact with Europe) for trainees. It is a joint initiative of the NRW government and the European Youth Parliament to dispatch NRW trainees to acquire work experience in other EU countries. 

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