The time has come. The historical Sorbian city of Budyšin/Bautzen, capital of Lužyca/Lausitz/Lusatia in Germany will host the EFA General Assembly for 2015 from the 16th to the 18th of Aprill, which will be organized with local EFA member Lužyska Alianca/Lausitzer Allianz. Members of the European Parliament, more than 150 people from 45 member parties and candidate member parties, coming from 18 different countries will come together to send a message of unity in diversity.
This year's General Assembly, under the slogan „We were, we are, we will be“ is dedicated to the ongoing struggle of the Sorbian people to preserve and promote their language and their distinct cultural identity. It will also concentrate on environmental sustainability, away from the lethal influence of the brown coal mines that forced thousands of people to leave their birth places already and continues to destroy the unique biosphere of the region.
Special focus will be given to the right of Sorbs to decide about their own future, with the demand for the establishment of a regional Assembly for Lusatia receiving more and more support every day.
As it was the case in previous years, EFA's political foundation Centre Maurits Coppieters (CMC) as well as EFA Youth (EFAy) will also organize their General Assemblies at the same dates. CMC will focus on the future of Regional and Minority Languages while EFAy will present ideas for Shaping Tomorrow's Europe.
Media representatives are cordially invited to attend the opening of the General Assembl on Friday 17th at 9.00 in Best Western Hotel Bautzen (venue of the GA). *
A first Press Conference will be held at 11:00 at the General Assembly venue with the participation of EFA President Francois Alfonsi, the Lužyska Alianca President Hannes Wilhelm-Kell and EFA MEP Jill Evans from Plaid Cymru/Wales-TBC).
Topic: Deciding about our future. A regional Assembly for Lusatia)
On Saturday 18th, a debate on the devastating effects of brown coal mining for the local culture and environment will be organized at 11:30 in the hotel. Later on, the delegates will have the chance to see the results of the open-cast mines from close range. A second Press Conference will be organized at the Schleife Cultural Centre with the participation of Francois Alfonsi, Hannes Wilhelm-Kell and EFA MEP Mark Demesmaeker from N-VA/Flanders-TBC)
Topic: Enviromental and Cultural Sustainability for Lusatia
Real-time coverage of the General Assembly: @EUPARTYEFA (Twitter) #EFA15 #Coppieters15 #time4sd
Videos & pictures: Facebook/European Free Alliance, Instagram (efa_official), Flickr (europeanfreealliance)
*all events will take place at the GA venue, unless specified differently.