From 2-3 June, hundreds of European Liberal Democrats met in Ljubljana, Slovenia, for the ALDE Party Council 2017.
Here is a snapshot of some of the headlines from the Council:
ALDE Party President Hans van Baalen MEP officially opened the ALDE Party Council with a message of hope: "One year ago it seemed that European citizens were suffering a European fatigue, but the great results of Liberals in Austria, the Netherlands and France have been the right antidote." Van Baalen also shared the good news that former Estonian Prime Minister Taavi Rõivas will be leading the process of drafting the ALDE Party manifesto for the 2019 European Parliament (EP) elections.
- Other high profile speakers included Miro Cerar, Prime Minister of Slovenia, Bart Somers, President of the ALDE Group in the European Committee of the Regions, Violeta Bulc, European Commissioner for Transport, and Xavier Bettel, Prime Minister of Luxembourg. You can watch all the speeches again via our Facebook Live or read an overview on our website.
- The ALDE Party political family welcomed Radicali Italiani, led by Antonella Soldo, as a full ALDE Party member party again. Radicali Italiani first joined the ALDE Party in 2004 as a full member under the leadership of charismatic Emma Bonino but became an affiliate member later on due to economic issues. We are delighted to welcome Italiani Radicali in full strength again as a full member party.
- Council delegates adopted many policy resolutions on a range of important and topical matters. In light of the recent NATO and G7 Summits, Council delegates call the EU to ambitiously move forward towards a farreaching cooperation of the EU Member States on foreign policy and security in order to decisively address global challenges and promote liberal values across the world. They also adopted resolutions on standing up for the democratic rights of the Venezuelan people and supporting civil society and democracy in Hungary as well as on opposing the participation of extreme nationalists in the government of Bulgaria. On social policy, delegates adopted a resolution on the responsibility to safeguard universal access to sexual reproductive health and rights. You can read an overview of the five urgency resolutions here. All adopted resolutions can be found online at our Policy Centre.
- European Liberals strongly condemned the abduction of independent journalist and human rights defender Afgan Mukhtarli, who had found refuge from persecution of the Azerbaijani government in Georgia, but was kidnapped from Tbilisi and brought to Azerbaijan on 29 May. ALDE Party President Hans van Baalen MEP stated: "European Liberals support their members in Georgia to demand full clarity over the circumstances of this kidnapping and continue to stand by Liberals in Azerbaijan and ask the European Union to exercise pressure upon the Azeri regime to immediately release Afgan Mukhtarli and other political prisoners." You can read more here.
- The ALDE Party Council hosted a plenary debate on universal basic income and employment automation as well as several fringe meetings on important matters such as women in agriculture and how to build an inclusive economy or democracy and citizenship in the digital age.
- All the official pictures of the ALDE Party Council can be found on our Flickr album.
- The next large-scale ALDE Party event will take in 2-3 December 2017 in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, where the 2017 ALDE Party Congress will be hosted.