LYON 2 FEBRUARY - Belarusian opposition leader Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya told the European Green Party congress today that the courage to fight, to protect freedom and democracy, will be vital at the upcoming European elections.
Her speech came as EU leaders yesterday met in Brussels to discuss support for Ukraine. More than 1.100 Greens from all over Europe are holding a three-day congress to elect their 2 top candidates (“Spitzenkandidaten”) and shape the Green’s campaign for the next EU elections.
In her keynote address Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya said: “Dictators don’t care about the people or the planet. They only care about their own survival. They see natural resources as a cheap fuel for a machine of repression and war. This must stop. Lukashenka will be defeated. Putin will be defeated. Ukraine will win. And Belarus will finally return to the European family. It’s important that the EU remains vigilant against both internal and external threats to these core values, safeguarding them for every European citizen”.
Mélanie Vogel, co-chair of the European Green Party said: “Courage is not the absence of fear. It is the rational assessment that there is something that matters more than fear. We are facing a climate and social crisis in Europe. Our future lies in the Green and Social Deal,” setting the tone for a campaign that will be centred on the concept of ‘courage’.
Thomas Waitz, co-chair of the European Green Party said: “With all our courage, we stand up against a destructive fossil dinosaur empire that captures whole states and economies. Renewables are needed to save us from climate disaster. They also make us independent from those who use energy as a weapon.”