On Monday, 9 May, Ināra Mūrniece, Speaker of the Saeima, addressed the Europe Day celebration event organised at the Small Guild by the Representation of the European Commission in Latvia by saying: “To celebrate Europe Day – 9 May – means to celebrate peace. It is not a day of triumph over somebody. It is a day to look toward the future.”
Looking back at our state’s return to the European family, the Speaker of the Saeima emphasised that for decades Europe has been a “peace project”, and that this was particularly significant for Latvia, which, left behind the Iron Curtain, aspired to return to its natural environment, to Europe.
“The European Union is the main bastion that protects us and ensures that Europe sees no more war. It was integration that made European leaders cooperate and understand that they should “better fight around a table than on a battle-field,” as Jean Monnet once put it,” Speaker Mūrniece said.
In her address the Speaker of the Saeima noted that the introduction of the common currency was also an element of peace and stability, while the European Union's enlargement was and still is a “peace project”, which brought the hope and promise of peace and security for people in Latvia.
“Europe is trying to promote peace and even “export” it. In 2012, the European Union received the Nobel Peace Prize. However, concerned voices ask whether Europe has not begun “importing” instability. Many say that they have already had enough of Europe and that everyone would be better off without it. In this situation, we need great inner strength to go forward, in order to safeguard what has been obtained – peace and democracy, the four freedoms given to us by the European Union,” Speaker Mūrniece said, stressing that “our European strength stems from solidarity, unity and tolerance. It is important to acknowledge and make use of it.”
In her address the Speaker of the Saeima remarked that she was pleased that for the second year already Europe Day in Latvia is marked with open door events, and that this year doors were open not only at the embassies of the EU member states, but also at the diplomatic missions of candidate countries and the Eastern Partnership countries. Thanking the Representation of the European Commission in Latvia and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for endorsing the initiative, Speaker Mūrniece expressed hope that it would become a 9 May tradition in Latvia.
Saeima Press Service