9th May is Europe Day.
Europe day represents a celebration of peace, unity and cooperation in Europe.
The EU highlights:
“Probably very few people in Europe know that on 9 May 1950 the first move was made towards the creation of what is now known as the European Union.
In Paris that day, against the background of the threat of a Third World War engulfing the whole of Europe, the French Foreign Minister Robert Schuman read to the international press a declaration calling France, Germany and other European countries to pool together their coal and steel production as “the first concrete foundation of a European federation”.
What he proposed was the creation of a supranational European Institution, charged with the management of the coal and steel industry, the very sector which was, at that time, the basis of all military power. The countries which he called upon had almost destroyed each other in a dreadful conflict which had left after it a sense of material and moral desolation.
Everything, therefore, began that day. That is why during the Milan Summit of EU leaders in 1985 it was decided to celebrate 9 May as “Europe Day”.
Every country which democratically chooses to accede to the European Union endorses its fundamental values of peace and solidarity.”
Various activities such as parades, exhibitions, seminars, and parties are held during Europe Day in most member states of the European Union (EU). This year Downing Street has decided not to fly the EU flag to commemorate Europe day as it has done in previous years. Some other government departments are also not following the tradition including the Treasury and the Foreign Office (see BBC News).
There are four essential symbols associated closely with the Europe Day celebration:
The single currency:
‘Unity in Diversity’
It will be interesting to see given the recent economic struggles across Europe if people will be celebrating Europe in the way that was intended.