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The EP and the Construction of Europe: From the Treaty of Rome to the first European elections

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What role has the European Parliament played at some key dates in European history? This stockshot traces the milestones of European construction since the Parliament's point of view.

Part 2: From the Treaty of Rome to the first European elections
During the meeting in Messina in June 1955, Foreign Affairs ministers of the six countries decide to extend European integration to the economy as a whole. On 25 March 1957 on the Capitoline Hill in Rome, the representatives of Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg and the Netherlands sign the Treaties of Rome consisting of the European Economic Community (EEC) and the European Atomic Energy Community (EAEC or Euratom). The treaties come into effect on 1 January 1958. The main aim of the EEC is to preserve peace and liberty and to give the foundations of an even closer union among the people of Europe. The authors call also for balanced economic growth. They provide for: a Customs Union, together with a common external tariff (CET), a common policy for agriculture, transport and trade, enlargement of the European Economic Community (EEC) to include other European States. The Euratom Treaty lays down ambitious objectives that include the "speedy establishment and growth of nuclear industries". However, due to the complex and delicate nature of the nuclear sector (connected with the vital interests of the Member States) Euratom will have to scale down its ambitions. After the creation of the EEC and Euratom, the ECSC Common Assembly is expanded to cover all three Communities. With 142 Members, the Assembly meets for the first time in Strasbourg on 19 March 1958 as the 'European Parliamentary Assembly' and Robert Schuman is elected as the first President of the Assembly. On 30 March 1962 European Parliamentary Assembly changes its name to 'European Parliament'. After a failure to reach the compromise in the Council (De Gaulle attacked the Commission for acting unconstitutionally in attempting to take power away from the national governments), France refuses to attend any further Council meetings and adopted what will become known as the "empty-chair" policy. This lasted for seven months, from June 1965 until January 1966, after which a settlement was reached, which became known as the "Luxembourg compromise". Following the political crisis, France agreed to take part in Council meetings once again, in return for an agreement that the unanimity rule be maintained when "vital national interests" are at stake.
SHOTLIST

Type: Stockshots [long]   Reference: I-075535   Date: 01/05/2007   Duration: 09:06
Personalities: Giscard d'Estaing, Valéry | Jenkins of Hillhead, Lord | Rey, Jean | Schuman, Robert | Spénale, Georges  
Location: Brussels | Rome - Capitol | Strasbourg | Luxembourg [town]  
Languages: ORIGINAL,

Tags: European Parliament | History of European Integration
Documents: LINKS,
© European Union, 2007   /   Source: EC - Audiovisual Service
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