The cure to the EU’s ills is more solidarity, more rule of law, more synergies and more integration, Bulgarian President Rossen Plevneliev said in an address to the European Parliament on June 8 2016.
“Integration is the only weapon we have to achieve peace, security and human development,” Plevneliev told MEPs, adding: “Erecting borders is a tempting, yet temporary and not sustainable solution.”
Plevneliev also condemned what he called Russia’s efforts to destabilise the EU and erode trust in the European project.
Referring to the tense relations between the EU and Russia, Plevneliev said: “We have entered a new phase of development, which I call Cold Peace time.
“We see confrontation and methods from the Cold War time: propaganda wars, cyber-attacks, proxy and hybrid warfare.”
The Bulgarian President said that Moscow had initiated “a vast propaganda machine that spreads messages of mistrust”.
“It seems like they are succeeding,” Plevneliev said. “We’ve stopped the only engine we have: integration. We are pulling the brake on enlargement, Schengen and others.”
Plevneliev said that Europe should move to “dispel the doubts of Europeans and reassure them we know where we are heading to”.
“I want that we all start new engines of integration,” he said, “The enlargement process, more efficient and coordinated common European foreign, defence and security policy, the European Energy Union, the Single Digital Market, the EU Capital Markets Union and others.”
Plevneliev also called for a new dynamic and open economic model of Europe: “the Europe of the future is a Europe of entrepreneurs, of technology and innovation”.