Joint Statement of the Presidency of the EU and the EU Heads of Mission in BiH on Europe Day

Today, 9 May, is a special day for Europe, which this year celebrated its 50th birthday. On this day in 1950, France’s Foreign Minister, Robert Schuman, unveiled his plan for building lasting peace in Europe by placing France’s and West Germany’s coal and steel industries under joint management, the so-called Schuman Declaration.

In effect, Robert Schuman was offering war-torn Europe a future based on reconciliation not conflict, mutual dependence not mutual destruction, the rule of law not the law of force. This led to the creation in 1951 of the European Coal and Steel Community, involving the Benelux countries as well as France and Germany, the first European Community, and to unparalleled peace and prosperity.

A remarkable thing about European integration today is the speed of change. With the accession of Bulgaria and Romania, the EU family has grown to 27 members. The experience of these countries and others that have joined the European Union over the years demonstrates how quickly countries can progress when their leaders show the political will to carry through necessary reforms.

We believe that Bosnia and Herzegovina has a future in the European Union and are committed to assisting the country on that road.

Today, we wish all citizens and leaders of Bosnia and Herzegovina a happy Europe Day.

German Ambassador Michael Schmunk, EU Presidency in BiH

Ambassador Dimitris Kourkoulas, Head of the European Commission Delegation

Dr Christian Schwarz-Schilling, EU Special Representative to BiH

Rear-Admiral Hans-Jochen Witthauer, Commander EUFOR in BiH

Brigadier-General Vincenzo Coppola, Head of the EU Police Mission in BiH

Maryse Daviet, Head of EU Monitoring Mission in BiH