EFAy celebrates its General Assembly in Landshut.

From the 12th to the 14th April, European Free Alliance Youth, the youth movement for stateless nations, regions and minorities, celebrated its General Assembly in Landshut, Bayern. For three days, more than thirty committed youngsters, representing almost twenty member organisations, debated, assessed and discussed the work done by EFAy in 2017 and has set the guidelines for 2018.

In our General Assembly this year, we also renewed our bureau and presidency. The incumbent president, M. Zañartu (Jovent Republicà), was re-elected for two more years, following the unanimous support of delegates. Former bureau members A. Fuentes (Gazte Abertzaleak) and K. Rzepecka (Młodzi Górnoślązacy) were re-elected, along with the newly elected members G. Masarà (Sanca Veneta), D. Timms (Plaid Ifanc), and A. Grimalt (Joves del País Valencià). B. Neumann (Jungbayernbund) and Rh. Spear (SNP Youth) were elected as bureau substitutes. The General Assembly also recognized the merits of the former President R. Garoby (PNC Ghjuventù) who did not stand for re-election. Garoby took office in 2012 as President, leading EFAy during four difficult years, putting the pillars for the future growth of the organisation. Former bureau members Ff. Arwel (Plaid Ifanc), L. Kolter (Mlada Enotna Lista) and T. Marni (Unga Tjóðveldið) did not stand for re-election.

The main goal of the newlyelected bureau will be to prepare and campaign for the European Elections, that are going to be held in the upcoming spring. After recent events in Catalonia and Corsica, self-determination, decentralisation and democracy have increasingly taken up the European media agenda. EFAy has the duty to show that these political values are not in opposition to the European construction, Europe must be reinforced with more democracy and more subsidiarity. The main threat to our common future are the current nation-states‘, that defend a status quo where commercial and economic purposes are the only reasons for a united Europe, and political and social integration are left aside. Stateless nations, regions and minorities are the subjects most interested in promoting a European identity that reflects our true cultural and linguistic diversity, in promoting trans-border cooperation, in avoiding social dumping, in a territorial economic re-equilibrium, etc. That’s why civic stateless nationalism should not be perceived a threat, but as an opportunity for Europe, and spreading this message will be one of the main goals of EFAy in the coming years. 

Another important goal of the new bureau is to continue promoting cooperation with other non-European stateless nations. That’s why during our GA, we had the pleasure to host a member of the Koma Komalên Kurdistan (Kurdistan Communities Union), who explained the recent developments of the Kurdish conflict in Turkey and Afrín. Finally, the General Assembly adopted more than ten motions and declarations, giving support to the Catalan political prisoners, to the youth of Alsasu and to the Kurdistan fight for freedom; but also against geoblocking for online media, for standardised shipping costs, for a region-specific management of small predators, and giving support to Bayernpartei for the next Bayern state elections, among others.