Axel E. Fischer, Chairman of the German Delegation of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), has been elected Chair of the European People’s Party (EPP-CD)-Group of the Parliamentary Assembly. He succeeds the Spaniard Pedro Agramunt who has occupied the post since June 2013.
“I am aware of the responsibility we bear as the largest group in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe. Our task is to promote the values of the Council of Europe, to which we are all committed. This is not as easy as it sounds,” the newly-elected Chair said in his inaugural speech.
“After all, people in our 47 member states do not all necessarily interpret the concepts of human dignity, rule of law, democracy, media freedom and family in the same way. Our task is thus to develop an understanding of different points of view and build a shared bedrock of common values,” Fischer pointed out.
As unifying all members of the EPP-CD-members Fischer identified the support an open society, with rules and restrictions kept to a minimum.
“This is the main distinguishing mark in relation to the socialists or the left. All too often, they think that people should be told what to do,” Fischer further stated.
“Our policies revolve around people. We stand for values-oriented policymaking, with marriage and the family as the cornerstones of our free and solidarity-based society. We stand for positive interaction between the generations. We uphold faith-based values and people’s responsibility to their own consciences and to God. We want to ensure access to education and training for all. No talents should go to waste!
We want all people to be able to live safely in our countries.
We are the people’s party of the centre.
We know that human beings are created free. The freedom of others determines and limits one’s own freedom.
It is up to policymakers to ensure that people have the necessary freedom, whilst reminding them of their responsibility towards society,” Fischer outlined the challenging practical tasks forthcoming.
“On the basis of our beliefs, we work together in a spirit of positive cooperation, we maintain dialogue. Together, we want to shape the future and ensure respect for human rights in all member states. Let us work together to achieve this shared aim,” Fischer concluded.