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Konstantinos Kyranakis


I don’t want to repeat the countless statements about welcoming the new European Commission. The truth is that we are talking about a team of younger, high-level and experienced politicians who said they’re ready to invest in people, create jobs and cut bureaucracy. From the selection of common candidates to the hearings and today’s voting, it was a long democratic journey questioned by many and opposed by a few. But we made it.
We, in YEPP, feel very proud to have been part of the election campaign that made Jean-Claude Juncker the first ever elected president of the European Commission. The large majority of EU citizens may not feel it today, but this campaign was the beginning of a more democratic Europe, an important step for a new relationship between the Union and its people.

We expect a lot from the Juncker team. It’s not just about the economy. For us in YEPP, it’s about winning back the trust of Europeans. The new Commissioners will need to do much more than statements and reports on their portfolios. They will need to work with Europeans on the ground, in their countries, in their cities, in their everyday lives if they want citizens to believe that Brussels is not a bureaucratic monster somewhere far away.


We, the former Presidents and President of the Youth of the European People’s Party, which was founded under the guidance of the late President of the European People’s Party, Wilfried Martens, in 1997, express our heartfelt condolences upon his passing on Wednesday, 9th October 2013.

President Martens was a true European. He believed in ensuring the voice of the youth of Europe was to the fore in all decisions. We will be forever grateful to the opportunities he gave us, along with a listening ear for our ideas. A brave statesman, a gentleman and giant of European politics. We will deeply miss him.

Requiescat in pace.

Fredrik Reinfeldt
YEPP, Founding President 1997-1999

Michael Hahn
YEPP, President 1999-2001

Rutger-Jan Hebben
YEPP, President 2001-2003

Daniel Bautista
YEPP, President 2003-2005

David Hansen
YEPP, President 2005-2007

Yannis Smyrlis
YEPP, President 2007-2009

Laurent Schouteten 
YEPP, President 2009-2011

Csaba Domotor
YEPP, President 2011-2013

Konstantinos Kyranakis
YEPP, President

Read the letter.

YEPP-Christophe Hansen

I am proud that Christophe Hansen, our active YEPP member from CSJ, is running for National elections in Luxembourg. I know him for his inspiring commitment to the European project, the Common Agricultural Policy and youth employment measures. Christophe, always on the side of PM Juncker was raising CSJ's voice in Europe, and the European voice in Luxembourg. As member of the YEPP Brussels Group, he has proven that young politicians can be very effective and strong when they set common goals.
I wish him the best of luck for the Elections on the 20th of October!


This summer, during the warmest days of the year, while millions of young Europeans are partying hard at the beach holding colorful cocktails, some others, less tanned, are holding switched on microphones instead. They are called young politicians.
Their friends are asking them why they choose this instead of relaxing. Instead of tagging their feet in front of blue waves, they’re instagramming teams of talented teenagers in blue t-shirts training themselves to become better debaters. Why? There is no answer to that question. Being active in student and youth politics for 9 years on, I can say with certainty that you only get your answer when you are part of it.
The last 2 months I've taken part in events organized by YEPP members in almost every European country. In Norway, Austria, Germany and Luxembourg they are getting ready for national elections in September and October. In Portugal and Estonia they are preparing for local ones in the same months. In Greece, Hungary, Finland and Cyprus new youth leaderships are elected and ready to join the YEPP family while Swedes, Belgians, Lithuanians and Irish are organizing summer schools and summer debates. In Italy, Serbia and Latvia they are building new youth organizations to cope with the current political challenges.


Last week was a good week for Greece. Here is what happened:

- Credit rating agencies upgraded the economy by 6 degrees, after a record of consecutive downgrades for 2 years now.

- The European Central Bank is buying again state bonds from Greece.

- A Greek billionaire, blamed for tax fraud of 701 million euros is arrested and actually in jail. So is the former minister of defence for abuse of public money.

- A new bill for a much faster jurisdiction system was introduced in plenary.

- A “villa” occupied for 20 years by anarchists, used as an asylum for rioters and their illegal material, was finally recuperated by the police.

In other words, the state seems to work as it should. It is not anything to cheer about, but the first steps of recovery are always the most powerful ones. And the hardest to take. Getting Greece out of the ciris is probably one of the most challenging tasks that a politician ever took worldwide. Antonis Samaras won the election amid criticism, disbelief, distrust, cynicism for the future of his government and the country. Everyone started talking about a temporary solution, with one more Prime Minister that promises a lot and won’t be able to deliver.


So what does Greece want?
Elections took place on May 6th, elections are taking place again on June 17th, in the same country, Greece. Why? Didn’t the Greeks have the chance to decide? Didn’t they show the way and expressed their preference to the policies they trust? Didn’t they choose what they want? The answer is no.
The Greeks might have expressed their voice, or at least 65% of them, but the result was nothing more than an anger vote, a condemnation of what they have seen in their country over the last 2 years, and some say, over the last 30 years. Nothing positive came out of this election. People said no to many things, but they did not say yes to anything and anyone. That is why the result is rather controversial. The 2 governing parties, Nea Demokratia (Center-Right) and PASOK (Socialists) lost in just 2 years more than 3 million voters and 45% of their political power. The “anti-memorandum” parties got 68% of the votes. Among them, the Golden Dawn (Neo-Nazi) got 7%, a completely new party without any specific program or ideology got 10% while the left increased its overall percentage to more than 30%. The political earthquake does not stop here though. A record high of almost 20% of the Greeks voted for parties that did not make their way into the Parliament, being unable to reach the 3% limit.


I met Montassar 4 months ago in Marseille in the EPP Congress. He was not talking too much even though he had countless thoughts crossing his mind. Montassar was one of the front-runners of the revoution in Tunisia. He also managed to create the "League of Young Patriots". Most of us have no clue about what this organization stands for, but i can tell you one thing for sure. If Tunisia is full of people like Montassar, democracy is not too far away.


Just a small note to begin with: The European Youth Forum (YFJ) is the official platform of all Youth Organizations in Europe, consists of National Youth Councils and International NGOs and is a recognized partner of the European Commission, the European Parliament, the Council of Europe and the United Nations.

I had the opportunity last weekend to represent YEPP at the Council of Members on the occasion of the CoE Advisory Council elections. Together with Duarte and Emanuele, we attended a number of meetings, policy commissions, working groups and plenary sessions. On our first night discussion with our friends from the sister Organizations DEMYC and EDS, we decided be as participative as possible. The centre right "trio" had a candidate for the elections so we wanted to create a positive impression.

For those of you who have attended our Council Meetings - believe me - it's a completely different experience. With 200 young europeans, all with their very own view on every issue, it's practically impossible to reach any kind of consensus. Endless information on countless topics with background knowledge that takes months - if not years - to get full knowledge on. Hundreds of abreviations that you have to remember because they are used in every sentence. In other words, not easy.


Greece is on the global media spotlight for the last 20 months. Thousands of front pagers, millions of articles, trillions of opinions, countless thoughts on what has gone so wrong in this country. On hearing “Greece” the world understands “problem”. The trust is gone, so is the credibility. Is it the fault of politicians? Definitely. Is it the fault of the Unions? No question. Is it the fault of our parents' generation? I think so. The only ones not having done anything to cause the crisis, are the ones who will literally pay for it. The young greeks, who are so sick of everything representing the past in their country, who do not want to follow the "safe way" of getting a job in the public sector, who desperately want to follow the western type of career building and entrepreneurship, all those who want to do something to change their country but they don't know how.