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News announcement31 May 2022Representation in Cyprus

The European Commission calls a General Meeting of over 400 EUROPE DIRECT centres to relaunch local communication and citizens’ engagement in these critical times

The lessons learned from the pandemic and now the war in Ukraine have relaunched the central role of the European Union and called for the remodelling of certain European initiatives and policies.

Young people with the European flag

In this context, the European Commission has convened a General Meeting of all its EUROPE DIRECT centres in Milan, to take stock of the evolving situation and give the centres the instruments to adapt their communication activities on the ground.   

In these unprecedented circumstances, the Commission aims to relaunch the partnership with public bodies, local administrations and NGOs hosting the EUROPE DIRECT centres and boost its capacity to convey the European message on the ground.

EUROPE DIRECT is a communication network whose mission is to make Europe accessible to people at the local level by engaging with citizens on the EU, its policies, priorities and its future. The network brings the European Union to citizens of all corners in Europe. It also works closely with local media to fight disinformation, and promotes active European citizenship in schools. In Cyprus, there are three Europe Directs: The Europe Direct Nicosia – University of Cyprus, The Europe Direct Limassol and the Europe Direct Larnaca.

The General Meeting comes at a time when the EU’s physical presence at local level has fully resumed following two years of COVID confinements, and Milan is the symbolic place where the pandemic originated in Europe.

Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni and European Parliament vice-president, Pina Picierno, will give a keynote speech, opening the conference.

Commissioner Gentiloni said: “The EU’s response to the economic shock caused by COVID19 has been unprecedented. And we are responding with equal determination to the new crisis caused by Russia’s aggression in Ukraine. In such uncertain times, communicating Europe is more important than ever – and more challenging. Our EUROPE DIRECT centres have a vital role to play in this effort, as key contact points between our citizens and the EU institutions. Everyone should know where their local EUROPE DIRECT centre is located so that they know where to go to find out what the EU is doing for them.”

The General Meeting has been inaugurated on Monday 30 May with the planting of the “Tree of Europe” in the Bosco Verticale area of Milan. The tree is a gift from Giuseppe Sala, Mayor of Milan, to the European Institutions, as a symbol of solidarity and peace.

Details

Publication date
31 May 2022
Author
Representation in Cyprus