Conference on Civil Society Development in Southeast Europe: extracts from the opening speeches by Olli Rehn, Janez Potocnik, and Georges Soros, Founder and Chairman of the Open Society Institute

Type: Report   Reference: I-057103   Duration: 10:34:15  Lieu:
End production: 17/04/2008
Olli Rehn, Member of the EC in charge of Enlargement, opened on 17 April 2008 in Brussels, the "Civil Society Development in Southeast Europe: Building Europe Together" conference, with the participation of Georges Soros, Founder and Chairman of the Open Society Institute, and Janez Potocnik, Member of the EC in charge of Science and Research. This two-day event brought together some 450 participants from civil society organisations working in four broad areas: good governance and democratisation; human rights; social inclusion/development, including education, and the environmental protection and sustainable development. The conference's main objectives were to offer civil society organisations (CSOs) from the EU and the enlargement countries a platform for networking, exchanging best practices and building partnerships and to disseminate information among stakeholders in civil society regarding financial support for developing civil society, under the Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance (IPA) and other EU programmes. The 2004 enlargement highlighted the vital importance of civil society in the promotion of reform and in the consolidation of democracy in Europe. It also highlighted the importance of ensuring the support of citizens, and to promote a strong, deep and sustained dialogue between societies in both the EU and the enlargement countries.

Only the original language version is authentic and it prevails in the event of its differing from the translated versions.
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TIME DESCRIPTION DURATION
10:31:22 Title 00:00:04
10:31:27 Exterior views of the Charlemagne building (2 shots) 00:00:13
10:31:40 Arrival of Olli Rehn, Member of the EC in charge of Enlargement, and of Georges Soros, Founder and Chairman of the Open Society Institute 00:00:05
10:31:45 General views of the conference (2 shots) 00:00:07
10:31:52 Olli Rehn (in ENGLISH) saying that civil society plays a key role in the EU's accession process of Southeastern Europe; the European future of the Western Balkans and Turkey lays primarilly in the hands of the people and of their democratically elected leaders; moving closer to EU membership requires both political will and citizens' support; and yes certainly, civil society organisations can crucially help achieving these goals 00:00:36
10:32:28 Cutaway 00:00:04
10:32:32 General view 00:00:08
10:32:40 Georges Soros (in ENGLISH) saying that there is again a great need for civil society, exactly because there is this general disillusionment with politics; and that is to act again as the conscious of society, to hold governments accountable, to monitor the performance of the government, to help society to organise itself 00:00:32
10:33:12 Cutaway 00:00:05
10:33:17 Georges Soros and Olli Rehn 00:00:08
10:33:25 Cutaways (2 shots) 00:00:19
10:33:44 Janez Potocnik, Member of the EC in charge of Science and Research, (in ENGLISH) saying that as chief negotiator for the accession of Slovenia into the EU, he witnessed with his own eyes the importance but also the effectiveness of strong and independent civil society organisations in the consolidation of human rights, in the establishment and maintenance of good governance, and in the safeguard of democracy 00:00:31
10:34:15 Cutaways (2 shots) 00:00:08
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