Europe's rightwing politicians, led by members of the Conservative party, launched in Brussels on December 6, 2005 a transnational movement in favour of reducing the European Union to a loose economic area.
Daniel Hannan, a Conservative MEP, who organised the meeting, said: "There have always been people criticising the EU. What there has never been is an alliance of people who can agree on a mainstream, positive alternative." 18 members of the European parliament and about 50 other participants from 30 countries, including eurosceptics from US an European think-tanks, altogether with participation of the Conservative Institute' representatives, pledged to support the creation of a free market area with powers only over cross-border issues.
photo/Brussels_Declaration_03.jpgMany of those attending took part in campaigns to oppose the recent European constitution, which was defeated by referendums in France and the Netherlands. Václav Klaus, the Czech president, well-known for his attitudes opposing the constitution, was chosen to be the "patron" of the alliance.
1. We uphold the values that have always defined European civilisation: personal freedom, private property, parliamentary democracy and the rule of law.
2. We recognise that the richness of European culture lies in diversity, variety and pluralism.
3. We fear that, in its pursuit of ever-closer union, the EU is progressively abandoning these values.
4. We posit a new and better European dispensation, in which power is exercised the lowest practical level, and in which decisions are taken as closely as possible to those they will affect.
5. We acknowledge the special loyalty that citizens owe to their nations, and believe that the primary democratic unit should be the sovereign state.
6. We support a broad and loose European association, in which all European states can comfortably participate.
7. We believe that, within the constant nexus of a European free market, states should be free to integrate to the extent that they wish, and in such combinations as they please.
8. We want to limit the jurisdiction of international institutions to cross-border issues.
9. We confirm our commitment to the Atlantic alliance, and look forward to a world without blocs, in which European nations take their place as part of the wider Western family.
10. We pledge ourselves to work, in our home countries and in the forums and councils of Europe, for the achievement of these goals.