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Horta ,  March 29, 2019

European Union values must be remembered and maintained, says Rui Bettencourt

The Regional Assistant Secretary of the Presidency for External Relations stated in Horta that the values underpinning the creation of the European Union should be "remembered" and "maintained."
"Jean Monnet's values have always been those of freedom, democracy, human dignity and humanism," said Rui Bettencourt. He spoke during an initiative to mark the 40th anniversary of Jean Monnet's death, highlighting that these values "are today ever more relevant than 10 or 15 years ago because they are often at risk."
For the government official, it is important to "look at our past and our history" because "our identity and our goals for the future often find a response in our history: what we were, where we came from and the path we have followed."
"Europe is built on three or four key principles," the Regional Secretary for External Relations said, adding that "a first principle should be a union of European peoples," which is sometimes "forgotten."
In this regard, the government official also stressed the important role played by people, beliefs and actions throughout the process of building the European Union and the future.
Rui Bettencourt considered Jean Monnet "a central figure in the construction of the European Union, of Europe, of what we are today" as well as "the architect of the European Union" and an "exemplary" man who built and imagined Europe and European institutions.
"The fact that we are from the Azores, from Faial or other island, and that we are small islands inhabited by only 250 thousand inhabitants should not deter us from taking action like men such as Jean Monnet.  Nothing can deter us, not even the fact that we are small islands," said the Regional Secretary.
Rui Bettencourt spoke to young people from Manuel Arriaga Secondary School and Horta Vocational Training School who were attending the lecture. On the occasion, he stressed that young people are "at the core" of this project and this is their moment to take action. Hence, they must assert themselves "with their beliefs, actions and participation" because "the European Union cannot decide about your future without you."


Official government press-releases presented in all foreign languages interfaces of the Azorean Government Portal (Portal do Governo dos Açores) are a sub-set of the government's official press-releases daily output and are chosen for translation and publication on the foreign language interfaces based on audience segmentation criteria. The entire collection of the Azorean government press-releases is available in portuguese, here, from the GACS Press Office site.

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