What role does the unit play

25 Years of German Unity - The Role of the European Parliament 

The President of the European Commission Jacques Delors described the German Democratic Republic as a "special case" in his speech to the European Parliament in January 1990. He added that the GDR had its place in the EC if it so wished. After his speech, the European Community began preparations for German reunification. A month later, the European Parliament decided to set up a special committee for reunification.


Special Committee and Donnelly Report


The committee was tasked with analyzing the possible effects of German reunification and accession to the European Community. One of the questions was how the citizens of the GDR could be represented in the European Parliament. The importance of the ad hoc committee was reflected in its composition. In total, the committee consisted of 20 MEPs, including Claude Cheysson, Fernando Morán Lopez and Leo Tindemans, three former Foreign Ministers, and the former President of the European Parliament Simone Veil. Spanish MP Gerardo Fernández Albor (EPP) chaired the committee. In order to avoid any conflicts of interest, the posts of chairman, deputy chairman and rapporteur were not held by Germans.


The British MP Alan John Donnelly (S&D) wrote a report on the possible consequences of a unification between the FRG and the GDR. The report states that the GDR may send 18 democratically elected observers to the European Parliament until the parliamentary elections in 1994. The approval of this report was greater in the plenaryßit out as the approval of the Unification Treaty in the German Bundestag.


MEPs remember

The German MEPElmar Brok (EPP) describes the fact that there is no longer any distinction between East and West as the most important achievement: "It has become normal. In the European Parliament nobody makes a distinction between West and East Germany." He also states: "It was very important that the reunification was debated with representatives of the GDR."


Sylvia-Yvonne Kaufmann (S&D), EU MP from Germany was an observer of the former GDR in the European Parliament. She shares her memories of the fall of the wall with us: "The fall of the wall changed my life in every way. I would never have imagined that I would work in the European Parliament just a few months later. It was a wonderful turn of fate."


The German MEP and former GDR observer Constanze Krehl (S&D) describes Parliament's role in the reunification process: "The European Parliament was one of the first institutions to clearly express its support for peaceful reunification. Ultimately, it was the first step that led to overcoming the division of the entire continent . "


Also the German MEPDieter-Lebrecht Koch (EPP) was an observer of the former GDR in the European Parliament. He points to the importance of parliament: "The unification of the German states could not have happened without the consent of the European Parliament."


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