summer leuven' - newspaper issue 3

61st International Session of the European Youth Parliament | Summer Leuven’ | 25h July 2009 A fter nine of the longest days I cer- tainly have ever spent at EYP, the fine line between reality and fic- tion has become vastly blurred. Not only do days seemingly merge into each other with nights being little more than socialis- ing under the cover of the dark. but you 200 crazy people have decided to put yourself through it for a second time. But why? What is it that brought you to Leu- ven, what is it that got you out of bed at silly-o’clock this morning? For me, it was certainly the prospect of waking up to a cloudy, miserable Sat- urday morning, climbing into a wrinkled suit, prying my ever-reddening eyes open and walking into the European Parlia- ment. As crazy as this may sound, the prospect of debating in the very chamber in which many of us will want to debate as a profession, the prospect of standing where the leaders of Europe stood only weeks before, the prospect of voicing our thoughts in the soul of Europe, will be the highlight of my time in Leuven. Enjoy it for what it is, as soon it will be nothing more than a distant memory, with only our mere words and newspapers to re- member it by. It is our greatest pleasure to report to you live, from the European Par- liament, Brussels, where you, fel- low parliamen- tarians, will be representing your views on the big- gest stage Europe has to offer. Committee overviews A comprehensive review of your debates during committee work - pages 16, 21-34 Creme of the crop Analysis of EYP del- egate selection - pages 12-13 Stub it out Smoking is bad and I don’t respect it - page 7 Here we close... Mmkay? e session is now behind us... This is the last issue of Summer Leuven’ featuring a supplement magazine. Thus, you are provided with a thorough overview of committe work, several opinion articles and also pictures and some enter- tainment. Hope you have enjoyed our reporting from sunny Belgium. May this be the bulkiest issue of an EYP newspaper ever!

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Newspaper of the 61st International Session in Leuven, 2009.


Page 1: Summer Leuven' - Newspaper Issue 3

61st International Session of the European Youth Parliament | Summer Leuven’ | 25h July 2009

After nine of the longest days I cer-tainly have ever spent at EYP, the fine line between reality and fic-

tion has become vastly blurred. Not only do days seemingly merge into each other with nights being little more than socialis-ing under the cover of the dark. but you 200 crazy people have decided to put yourself through it for a second time. But why? What is it that brought you to Leu-ven, what is it that got you out of bed at silly-o’clock this morning?

For me, it was certainly the prospect of waking up to a cloudy, miserable Sat-urday morning, climbing into a wrinkled suit, prying my ever-reddening eyes open and walking into the European Parlia-ment. As crazy as this may sound, the prospect of debating in the very chamber in which many of us will want to debate as a profession, the prospect of standing where the leaders of Europe stood only

weeks before, the prospect of voicing our thoughts in the soul of Europe, will be the highlight of my time in Leuven. Enjoy it for what it is, as soon it will be nothing more than a distant memory, with only our mere words and newspapers to re-member it by.

It is our greatest pleasure to report to you live, from the European Par-liament, Brussels, where you, fel-low parliamen-tarians, will be representing your views on the big-gest stage Europe has to offer.

Committee overviewsA comprehensive review of your debates during committee work - pages 16, 21-34

Creme of the cropAnalysis of EYP del-egate selection - pages 12-13

Stub it outSmoking is bad and I don’t respect it - page 7

Here we close... Mmkay?The session is now behind us...

This is the last issue of Summer Leuven’ featuring a supplement magazine. Thus, you are provided with a thorough overview of committe work, several opinion articles and also pictures and some enter-tainment. Hope you have enjoyed our reporting from sunny Belgium. May this be the bulkiest issue of an EYP newspaper ever!

Page 2: Summer Leuven' - Newspaper Issue 3










12. 13. 14.






2 Summer Leuven’| July 25th 2009

It is six in the morning on a rainy Sat-urday, and we, your editors, find our-selves still awake, watching the sun poke its beady presence through the Belgian clouds. And as the light burns through our sleep-deprived eyes, it causes the stars in the previous night’s sky to fade, not to be seen until we next search for them. Just as the emergence of the sun has caused our stars to fade, it brings with it the fading of our Leuven dream. Our job as editors has been to make sure that if you look for that star when you get home, our work at the session will make it possible for you to find it.

In our first editorial, we promised you an experience which you may not have seen before, with videos, magazines and newspapers. With the Delegate President elections also, the pressteam as a whole has worked harder than we have ever seen a team work in EYP. Although this is

a time for us to thank you, the delegates, for reading our media and receiving our ideas in such a positive manner, we do need to also thank the organisers and our lovely journalists for all their time, effort and incredible work rate,

Peace (over and) out,

Los Team Editores...






..........................EYP CONTROVERSIES



.........EYP SUPPORT



................WORK IN PROGRESS




...................GA AND HELSINKI

Page 3: Summer Leuven' - Newspaper Issue 3

Summer Leuven’ | July 25th 2009 3

The Pressroom of the 61st In-ternational Session of EYP, for

the first time in the history of this organisation, introduced a new position, the Delegates President.

We are so proud to have devel-oped the idea and to have created a true chance for the delegates to exer-cise their democratic right by choos-ing their best representative. At the same time, we are very thankful to the Head Organisers for having accepted this suggestion and supported us with the needed infrastructure to actually build a whole process including cam-paign, voting and implementation.

Also Mr J-P Beck, the executive di-rector of EYP/HSS supports the idea, even taking it further. He suggests that in the next summer session the Delegate President shall chair two or three resolution debates from the board.

Five nominees were chosen out of 220 delegates. Each of them were allo-cated a journalist in the role of Cam-paign Manager, supplying the candi-dates with posters, flyers and all the needed materials for campaigns. In the position of a campaign manager myself, I’m proud to tell you that the very first Delegates President in the history of EYP is Floris Lancelot Lau-wers from Belgium. We had a short conversation with him about the role and responsibilities that he now has.

We tried to stress since the begin-ning that this was not a joke or even

worse, a popularity contest! The pro-cess was carried out with a big sense of responsibility from the pressteam. “It feels good to be trusted by your friends to carry their voice in a higher instance, and speak to the organisers about their problems” - he comments.

The role of the Delegate President is to get to know the problems that might rise during a session, especially related to organisational issues. Floris tells us that so far he had been trying to listen as much as can to his fellow delegates and has already received some valuable suggestions.

Still I want to quote him when he says “ Even if the Delegate President is not a must for a Session, certainly it does help both organisers and del-egates by creating bridges of commu-nication between them.”

By Jon Vrushi

Democracy in action

Question and Ance

To really understand our lovely session president, Ms. Ance Kaleja, we took

a half an hour, sat down on the bus back to Leuven got to know her a bit better.

What was going to be a short inter-view ended up being a facinating dis-cussion about everything from EYP to museums. This has been reflected in our article, which went from being a simple question and answer session, to a much more wide ranging discus-sion. This is one of the great things about our president; you never feel like she is just answering your ques-tions, but that she is engaging you in conversation

We have said it before but it is a real pleasure to spend time talking

with her. She has really enjoyed her time at this session, and those of you who saw her reaction at Euroconcert will know just how much being here has meant to her. Unsuprisingly, she told us that this had been the stand out moment of the session and would really like to thank everyone who planned it. When asked about her feelings on the session, her answer had remarkable similarity with many of us, a mixture of fatigue, excitement and pride. Throughout our conversa-tion she provided us with fascinating insights on her experience so far and urged everyone who reads this to try to apply what they have learnt in EYP to the real world. But we did not just talk about the session. The 26th of July is a very special day for Ance, it is her name day. In Latvia, this means that everyone can go round to her house for a party, so if you are in the neighbourhood feel free to visit! Also, her plans for the future are mainly concerned with moving to Edinburgh to study and then hopefully followed

by opening a book shop, which she will happily talk about for ages.

As she plans for the future she has told us about how excited she is with the potential she has seen in Leuven and how special everyone she has met is. We are certain that if she is reading this Ance will be feeling a bit awk-ward at such high praise, but we do not care, ”We love you Ance, feel free to cry as much as you want to. You have definitely had a huge impact on our EYP journey ”.

By Victoria Wilkinson and James Benge

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The EU and the rise of the far right

The recent European elections were a great failing on the part of democracy in Europe and an

embarrassment to those countries who sent far-right ministers to the European Parliament. The United Kingdom, Belgium, Hungary, the Netherlands and many other countries are now represented by MEPs whose views many of us would consider dangerous. As results filtered in on election night I spoke to many of my friends across Europe who shared with me their shame that such hard-line ‘politicians’ were representing their view. As a democratic union we must ask ourselves why they gained seats in the Parliament and whether we should be ensuring this does not happen again.

What is being referred to as the right in this article is a strong stance on nationalism and immigration, often a strong anti-EU stance and desire to strengthen law and order. Whilst this should not be of excessive concern, we

must be worried by whether the current recession will encourage people to turn to the extremist parties that make up Euronat, an organisation of nationalist political parties including the Front National (FR), British National Party (UK) and the New Right (NL).

The first reason behind the rise of the far-right is one that has been alluded to previously, the recession. History tells us that extremism flourishes in tough times and an anti-immigration message is more popular when people are losing their jobs and seeing immigrants from Eastern Europe making a living in their country. For the first time in over a decade there are more available workers than jobs and this means that migrants and locals will compete for jobs. Strikes across Europe have proven that the fear that the far-right thrives on is clear and apparent. The recession has been combined with the more long standing issue of immigration. This has forever been the great selling point of the far-right and in the current ‘war on terror’, extremists have been able to prey on prejudices, as proved by Nick Griffin (leader of the BNP), ‘Not

all immigrants are terrorists but all terrorists are immigrants’. Whether or not this is true is irrelevant, his words link all immigrants with terrorism and are, arguably, inciting violence.

Should we be scared by the rise of the right-wing in Europe? Whilst these parties are still only getting a small proportion of the vote, we must be worried that any of our citizens feel that their beliefs are best represented by the likes of the Front National. But there remains an easy way of confronting this threat, simply by voting. To most people the arguments described in the previous paragraph are abhorrent, but whilst the far right mobilises its supporters and normal people remain so apathetic the proportion of votes going to extremists will only increase. Many far right parties actually received fewer votes in the 2009 elections than in 2004, but because so few people turned out they were able to gain seats in the European Parliament. If we wish to make it clear that men like Geert Wilders do not represent our opinion, we must make sure our voice is heard at the ballot box.

By James Benge

4 Summer Leuven’| July 25th 2009

With the results of June’s European elections having drastically changed our parliament, James Benge examines the reasons behind the growth of the far right in Europe

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Summer Leuven’ | July 25th 2009 5

Do you ever feel like you are losing your EYP spirit? Do you happen to

suppress feelings that boil inside you and that you really want to express? There is a remedy to treat all this: attending Euroconcert at an International Session. Before Thursday, I heard lots of negative opinions on the idea of Eurocon-cert but I hope that after what we all experienced this particular evening, no one would dare to say anything bad about it.

If music is the key, the performers at the Euroconcert of the 61st Inter-national Session of EYP in Leuven definitely opened all possible doors. For two hours, we could satisfy our sense of beauty with all kinds of mu-sic. There were three elements that made the appearances unforgettable and unique: the high quality of sing-ers, the variety of styles and enormous emotional power of all the perform-ers. It would be impossible to choose a potential winner or the most inter-

esting act. All of them had their own magic and authenticity; they were not there to compete, but to amaze.

The first thought that came to my mind after the Euroconcert was that classical music is not dead. Many of the participants played and sang acap-pella. George (UK) gave a stunning performance singing a brilliant ver-sion of “on the street where you live“, with his deep and operatic voice. The piece of music that we will probably never forget is “The Impovisation” on guitar by David Bokhorst (NL), one of the few who received a distin-guished standing ovation.

It is not very surprising that the majority of the performing delegates decided to sing or play, popular mu-sic. Beginning with smooth, soul songs sung by Carlene (UK) or Mi-chelle (SE), the evening then moved on to some talented piano men, end-ing with energetic and catchy versions “Supreme” or “You give me some-thing”.

It is difficult to imagine Eurocon-cert without typical showmen who can rock the party. The event in Leu-ven also abounded with the creativ-ity of the performers and also held a few surprises for the audience. Pascal (CH) played a very original song that he penned himself and made all the

listeners applaud heartily. What is more, Adrian (IE) and Anna (IE) had changed a little bit the David Gray’s piece of music and came up on the stage to sing “This year’s Leuven”.

There are two special standout per-formances of the evening that will definitely stay in our memory for a long time. Christian (RO), who has been already known to the wider au-dience due to his infamous song from Stockholm, composed some music that definitely could be described as a delegates’ anthem of the session. “Lovin’ Leuven” performed not only by Christian, but also by Pascal, im-pressed all of the delegates who were still humming the catchy tune well after the concert. But that evening was also probably one of the best of the session for our dear Ms. President Ance (LV). Chairs prepared a surprise song for her, “lean on me” where the lyrics described how good is it to have friends that we can always rely on, the biggest advantage of the EYP.

All those who hide their positive feelings about EYP seemed to let their emotions flow afterwards. I saw people dry their eyes and hug close to their committees. Not only does mu-sic soothe, but it also makes us, in a very incredible way, care more about the others and realise how important people are. That is why, as far as the Euroconcert is concerned, I am defi-nitely a fan.

By Zosia Wasik

iConcertZosia Wasik looks back on a memorable evening and some spectacular performances

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6 Summer Leuven’| July 25th 2009

One of the activities that, for most EYPers, poses a vital and integral part of every ses-sion is teambuilding. Admittedly, it is hard

to imagine a session without it. In order to investi-gate the thoughts on the successfulness and necessity of teambuilding, we asked different participants of the session on their opinion.

To start with, delegate president Floris Lauwers (BE) ex-plained he had been talking about teambuilding with some of the delegates. What came out of this is that teambuild-ing could use more of the competitiveness element. Floris suggests more games that involve two or more committees; not only is it a binding experiences (‘us’ against ‘them’), it is also an opportunity to get to know other delegates, besides those in your committee, a bit better. It would improve the atmosphere, and committees or delegations would be less separate. Lastly, he wished to share his personal thoughts; adding that the ‘mean’ kind of teambuilding games, such as the ones that make a challenge seem like a Gordian knot, actually have a great added value to making a team. They may seem unsolvable, but in the end it is these kinds of games that increase cooperation and coordination, that is later needed for committee work.

A common response coming from the delegates was that they would have liked to see more ‘fun’ games. Przemys-law Wilk (PL) mentions that he would have preferred to play more fun teambuilding games, rather than a lot of dis-cussing and problem solving. These sorts of games are also

important for dif-ferent reasons, Monika Kachlik (CZ) explains; they are a great

opportunity to get physical with the opposite sex. In addi-tion, physical games can help people to get out of their shell, Marina Lazeri (AL) adds, by stepping out of your comfort zone they make speeches and presentations in front of the entire group less scary and embarrassing.

Many of the delegates at the session have had previous experiences with teambuilding, Veronika Drzková (CZ) ex-pressed she felt that the teambuilding in Borzee was better than in Rennes, this partially because the climate was a lot more comfortable. Wim van Doorn (NL) agrees, adding that like Veronika he also felt that the teambuilding dur-ing this session was more successful. His committee bonded very well during their so-many-hours hike in the woods, which according to Wim makes for an interesting strategy: first excessive bonding and only then playing games after-wards. In any case, it worked for AFET II. Oscar Schonfield (UK), their chair, believes that teambuilding in itself is not so vitally important. In fact, he believes that a committee achieves the same as two days of teambuilding, with only half a day of committee work. Sharing this point of view, ENVI II chair Richard Royal (UK), expresses that in his opinion it is equally efficient to just have five days of com-mittee work. In contrast to this however, Dominik Drašnar from CULT II believes that teambuilding is absolutely nec-essary at the session. Not only does it provide leverage to the more serious and demanding games, it also lets the del-egates open up to each other. EMPL chair Emre Tekişalp (TR) just wishes to share that he says ‘yes’ to teambuilding.

Having a more negative view on teambuilding, Kyle Meyr (NO) argues that teambuilding may be efficient in making strangers bond; it is this very bonding that decreas-es the quality of debate. As a result of this, in committee work people are more reluctant to disagree and prefer to support their fellow delegates in the light of teamwork. This is shame in Kyle’s eyes, who perhaps would have liked to see more heated debates. Karl Hiemeyer (NO) just nodded, attempting to agree, whereas in the end he added: ‘**** it, I do like it’.

Leonie Goettch wonders whether or not the two days of teambuilding really is a valuable use of our time?

By Leonie Goettch

Why build a team?

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Summer Leuven’ | July 25th 2009 7

Tobacco is the single largest cause of avoidable death in the European Union

accounting for over half a million deaths each year and over a mil-lion deaths in Europe as a whole. It is estimated that 25% of all can-cer deaths and 15% of all deaths in the Union could be attributed to smoking. In order to curb this epidemic one really has to look at the habit for what it is- one giant question mark.

The health hazards associated with smoking are facts, proven with scien-tific experiments, major worldwide studies and well documented medical studies. Although, the wilder asser-tions of the European anti-smoking lobby sometimes prompt one to won-der whether they have been exagger-ated. One must remember that there are if one considers them, health haz-ards associated with virtually every pleasurable human activity, and many whose pleasures escape debate for ex-ample nascar racing, ice skating and even driving.

The majority of Europeans have been exposed to substantial cam-paigns, advertisements and policies such as smoking bans. Informing Eu-ropeans of the potential dangers of smoking as well as emphasising the supporting research has merely served to ensure that citizens trust govern-ment advisory and the accuracy of those warnings.

In spite of this, approx 40% of the adult British population continue to smoke. As a fraction of the whole, this has declined since the 1950s. A recent UK survey shows that a third of peo-

ple smoke cigarettes. Why? The Brit-ish public is far from misinformed. It is one of the most stolid, level-headed groups of people in the world and has a reputation for asserting the concerns of its citizens and implementing all European directives. What can make one third of the UK continue with an activity known at least to some extent to be harmful?

One proposed answer is that Eu-rope’s big interests prefer things hap-pening this way. The cigarette market worldwide is dominated by seven gi-ant companies – more over, by seven multinationals companies. In the UK and Ireland alone over 170 million Euro is spent per year on advertis-ing and governments seem to choose to remain silent given the scale of the revenue brought in. As far back as 1988 the Irish , Italian and French governments combined government raised 8 billion Euro in excise duties and Value Added Tax from the sale of tobacco products. It takes only an open-minded view of politics, and all the materials are there for an obvious presumption.

Yet, all cigarette packets in the UK and Ireland and indeed in many European countries are embossed, coated and coloured in the the words “WARNING: SMOKING CAN CAUSE FATAL DISEASES”. Since their introduction in the 1970s with response to aforementioned research, these health warnings have become increasingly ex-plicit with European health of-ficials suggesting that photos of cancer riddled lungs be printed on the packets. Too far?

European consum-ers may have become so familiar with such sensa-tionalist techniques such that few take the trouble

to pay attention to them any longer. The average smoker may not have read the detailed medical literature which only serves to further support the labelling. He or she may avoid newspaper articles or television docu-mentaries summarising such.

They would need, even so, to be blind or illiterate not to have some ba-sis for making an informed choice on whether or not to light up and further impose the European stereotype of a relaxing Marlbaro whilst sipping a beer at dusk. Another common excuse amongst smokers is that cigarettes are so hugely addictive that the majority, having once tasted them, are incapa-ble of giving them up.”Once a smoker always a smoker”.

To a non smoker, the issue seems not to be the policies imposed by gov-ernments, the bans and the debates raised around them as regards the impingements of our basic freedoms, but the general disrespect of the value of life itself. Perhaps we are travelling too fast or too slow. Perhaps we have forgotten to consider how precious it is to have the experience of a life at all.

By Adrian Clarke

Smoking - an activity shrouded in the bureaucracy of the times we live in

Adrian Clarke ponders on the irrationality of human chimneys

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8 Summer Leuven’| July 25th 2009

Journalists are really interesting forms of nature. They can suddenly appear out of nowhere asking you various questions from “how to solve the problem of star-vation in Central Africa?” to “who would you have dinner and discuss friendly amendments with?” They practice their freedom to write everything concerning you. They have people everywhere and easily swallow all information you give them, be it your favourite superhero, size of your shoes, scandals featuring newly elected members of the European Par-liament or your very own persona. You might get lucky and end up being cool! Believe me, you would rather let them write about all that in the magazine than allow them be observers of you helplessly climbing up the hills on dark nights while fighting earthquakes below your feet.

But the worse case scenario is a journal-ist sneaking up to you and then asking or saying something quite trivial. When they are approaching you literally feel the growing tension, your palms get sweaty, your mind reaches its limits and then the journo simply says, “good morning, can I borrow some toothpaste?” Sometimes I feel like a guinea-pig and the journalists are so very happy when they conduct hor-rid experiments on us.

Based on the aforementioned, you may not be aware of the simple fact that the members of the press team are also my heroes. How I admire these brave cheer-ful EYPers. They have the power to make session delegates into desirable presidents responsible for making sleeping hours longer, wake-up calls sweeter and Bel-gian beer cheaper. All these benefits result from the hard work done by the journal-ists. Please pay your tribute to them, they really care about you.

Forever yours, dearest journos,Laszló Gulacsi (RO)

On Journalists

As I write this, delegates have completed commit-tee work and produced

their resolutions which are being debated in the glorious splen-dour of the headquarters of, what we as EU citizens perceive to be the home of democracy; the European Parliament.

Even though, you all worked hard to create these resolutions, from a personal perspective, I have often found that resolutions produced at all levels of EYP are unwilling to take risks for fear that they will be shot down and would not pass.

Some of the reasons behind this seem difficult to solve without fun-damentally changing the spirit of EYP. Working as a team and work-ing towards consensus does not cre-ate an environment in which con-troversial viewpoints can flourish. If everyone agrees on a viewpoint, it probably is not a very controversial one. As everyone enters committee work with their own viewpoints, they must reach consensus and this precludes sensitive issues.

But I think this is part of a gen-eral European distaste for violence. There is an oft-repeated statement that Europe is currently living through its longest period of con-tinuous peace since the Roman Em-pire. Although this is not necessarily true, it has informed our continent’s reaction to crises in recent years, particularly in Africa. In places like Darfur, Rwanda and Zimbabwe, Europe’s reaction has too often been a lot of talk without any action, costing many lives. Yet the idea of

pan-European military action seems to fill us with fear whenever such a possibility is discussed, despite the fact that we continually tell our-selves that to compete with global powers in other areas we must be united.

The issue of controversy in EYP is most interesting when it comes to discussing military action, which I have never seen considered in a resolution, for obvious reasons. No one wants war to bring about changes in Europe, but sometimes we must allow for the argument that it might be necessary. We always look to take the moral high ground when countries like Russia or the USA look to assert their mili-tary power, but that does not mean we should not be willing to react when necessary. However, delegates will always argue that we should not be taking such dangerous steps.

Should we be aiming for more controversial resolutions? A resolu-tion that is willing to hold a strong opinion is likely to create a very interesting debate in General As-sembly. One example that springs to mind was in Dublin2007 when, at the height of tensions between Kosovo and Serbia, the committee on Foreign Affairs proposed that Kosovo be allowed to unilaterally declare independence, despite it being against international law. This provoked strong reactions and interesting arguments and as such, created better conclusions. But there is nothing to be gained from being controversial for the sake of it. Resolutions are designed to show the opinions of the committee and if that means they do not spark excellent debates, then that is just a shame. A controversial resolution is great but nowhere near as good as a representative one.

Why is EYP not more controversial?

By James Benge

James Benge considers EYP’s distaste for the use of force

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Summer Leuven’ | July 25th 2009 9

When people’s batteries are starting to run low, ten-

sions tend to rise; committee work and GA can often be a breeding ground for feelings of wrath and frustration. The lack of sleep, the unusually high consumption of food and drink and the intensive program do not quite contribute to feelings of serenity and peace. In other words, participants suf-fer a great deal of stress. It is this stress that does not go unnoticed.

Judgmental criticism, condescend-ing sarcasm or, even, passive-aggres-sive retaliation can make their entry when working in such an exhaustive environment as this. Is this recogni-sable? Bear in mind that this kind of attitude does not necessarily have to be outspoken, the mere thought also qualifies. You are certainly not the only one. The tragedy of the whole situation however, is that the threat of entering a vicious cycle is present, because “ever mind the rule of three, three times what thou gives returns

to thee.” And no, by giving a nice girl a kiss, it does not mean that you should expect three back. However, by doing a good deed, good will come to you. The same applies for slight hints of obstructive behaviour. The first solution, to avoid the drama of sulking fellow participants in the corner, or the possibility of serious conflict, is to be a good boy or a good girl. Be Mother Teresa, and you will be rewarded with fuzzy feelings of happiness and joy.

Secondly, in our quest to minimise stress levels, the best place to start is during breakfast. Good nutrition in the morning is fuel for the rest of the day. Then comes coffee break, prob-ably the most daunting oxymoron of the session. Here you have ‘break’, which is good and is what partici-pants need to get their groove back, and then there is ‘coffee’, the liquid form of pure evil. In large quantities it will make you twitch and sweat, and the caffeine will only cause a short high anyway, followed by the need for more. Say ‘yes’ to tea, fruits, sandwiches and veggies, and ‘no’ to coffee, sugars, and energy drinks, however tempting they may seem.

Thirdly, it is advisable to do the impossible; and that is to get some sleep. Realising that there is a fixed schedule, and that everyone needs his or her daily (nightly) dose of ‘party’, a solution here seems to be hard to find. However sleep whenever you can. No distractions, no interactions, this is your moment of peace.

Also, a good way to relieve stress is to have physical contact. As a com-mittee, sit in a circle and each mas-sage the back of the person in front of you. It works absolute wonders. Cuddles, hugs and a pat on the back keep a person going as well. Remem-ber the rule of three, who knows; by hugging your fellow delegate you

may be expecting a few hugs back. A good method to reduce any

mounting frustration is to count to ten – a mother’s advice. For the sceptics amongst us; do not talk until you have tried. In those ten seconds try asking the questions of, “Why do I feel the need to respond?” or “Is it worth my energy?” In the end it is all about preserving your own positive energy, and letting all the negative go.

Lastly, laugh. Life looks a whole lot better when you joke around, per-haps not during GA in the European Parliament, but there are plenty of other opportunities. Here’s a good one, thanks to Philip Danielsson, better known as Snivills: “What do you get when you cross a banana and Ance? A banan-ce!”

There are many ways to take your moment during the day. By keep-ing an eye on yourself, your feelings and those others, it is easier to deal with the strain that EYP can put on a person. Frustrations are there, and will be there in the future, but there are ways to deal with letting them take over. Talk about it, be open and honest, and above all be truthful to yourself. It may sound like an advice featured in a horoscope, but think about it at least. Are you experienc-ing stress? Do you have a problem? Deal with it.

By Leonie Goettch

Calm down, dear Take a deep breath and count to three. Leonie Goettch was feeling very wound-up, so she put all her feel-ings down on paper

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10 Summer Leuven’| July 25th 2009

The internet is a tremendous asset for democ-racy; it seems that there is no way to consider the internet in its current form problematic for

democracy in any way, unless a new form of social gov-ernance develops as a result of the infinite capabilities offered by the internet.

The internet is fundamentally a combined flow of infor-mation, which when used for that purpose, encourages free speech directly from the people. It is therefore an organic source of opinion, rather than having information censored by the media or government officials. However, there occur practises that hinder the turning of the wheels of democ-racy, such as propaganda and content filter. One specific example would be Google’s recent controversies with the Chinese information sector.

Our contemporaries across the Atlantic protected free speech in the Bill of Rights. And what is more to it, it was the first right to be protected. Here in modern day tech-no-savvy Europe, Switzerland for example has adopted a complete freedom of all downloadable media and all other downloadable sources of information. Without free speech, a true democracy cannot function. Free speech is the back-bone of democracy and the internet is fast becoming the most universal means of sharing new ideas. One needs only to look at the Obama campaign to see just how much im-pact the internet has on the minds of the masses.

Pro-European thinking supports the development of the European information based society, something that the Lisbon treaty aims to affirm. The greatest advantage of the Internet is that it allows average Europeans to express them-selves to an audience that listens. Engagement in and pas-sion for the issues have a relatively free medium by which to be expressed. The engagement of the population encourages more involvement in the political process. With Europeans now more engaged in digital footprint of blogs, articles and forums, democracy is thriving online.

On the other side of the coin the Internet as a source of political information has taken much criticism because bloggers and other online factions, among them a number of “extremist” groups who now have direct access to a wide audience and exercise significant influence on people. Terror organizations use the internet to communicate worldwide.

Ironically, in utilising the very medium used to strengthen their organisations; they prevent their members from using it when they are in control of the population. By prevent-ing such members from accessing a plethora of articles and content steeped in liberalism, these organisations inhibit members from exploring freedom movements and other forms of retaliation.

The internet essentially strengthens democratic thinking and enables the purest form of free speech. It allows a mul-tiplicity of people to discuss ideas in real-time. It stirs pas-sions that engage the population in current topics, which is critical to encouraging logical policies.

Though the debate continues as to the security of the in-ternet as a means of sharing opinions, at the core of democ-racy is the ideal of free speech for all, the internet simply serves as a voice for those who feel they do not have one and supports those who feel they have.

[email protected] Clarke attempts to demonstrate how we can put the internet to good use in order to en-hance our democratic principles

By Adrian Clarke

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Summer Leuven’ | July 25th 2009 11

Elia, one of the session supporters, believes Eu-rope is not only a common market but a true community and encourages young Europeans

to focus on co-operation.

During the General Assembly Summer Leuven’ had the possibility to discuss European matters with Eva Suls from Elia, one of the supporters of the session.

Elia is a transmission network operator managing the Bel-gian high-voltage network. It has used some of its resources to support several initiatives; for example programmes for university students. The motivation behind supporting the European Youth Parliament was to give young people a pos-sibility to think more, develop a wider perspective, work together and develop different competences, such as listen-ing and co-operation. “This is how we ourselves work, too. Our aim is one single harmonised European market and to reach it, we have to be able to communicate well, we need to focus on working together.”

Several topics that are typically discussed at EYP sessions are of extreme importance for Elia as well. Much of Elia’s ef-fort is aimed towards the development of sustainable energy resources, whilst still utilising various sources and origins to guarantee stable supply. Eva Suls refers to many initiatives that have been started on the regional level as creating a platform to achieve one common market. “The importance of decisions made on the European level are becoming more important in the shaping of national policies,” says Eva Suls whilst addressing the biggest changes in Europe over the past twenty years.

As a company that has made a commitment not only to its customers and community but also to all of Europe,

Elia’s mission is to develop the European electricity market in a reliable, sustainable and efficient way. “Due to its cen-tral location, our company has a proactive attitude regard-ing European matters,” says Eva Suls. Elia is highly active in pan-European associations, such as the European Network of Transmission System Operators for Electricity (ENTSO-E), a newly established organisation uniting 42 transmis-sion system operators from 34 countries. The president of this organisation, Daniel Dobbeni, is Elia’s CEO.

Coming back to the mission of the organisation, Eva Suls believes that Europe is much more than a united mar-ket or economic union. “Europe is a community,” she says, “and through ENTSO-E we try to ensure that European citizens are provided with best possible energy resources. We are working on the sustainable development of Europe together.”

In conclusion, Elia hopes that the international session in Leuven has been challenging, enticing and has given young Europeans from very different backgrounds an op-portunity to listen, understand each other, and work in mu-tual respect.”

By Martin Saar

EYP’s Little Helper

Elia manages the electrical infrastructure of the high-voltage supply all over Belgium and through that provides domestic and foreign producers, electricity suppliers, distribution system operators and many others with an access to the high-voltage grid. Elia’s local responsibilities range from constant monitor-ing of the network to the general development of respective infrastructure.

What is Elia?

Martin Saar would like to thank everyone who has supported him during this tough time

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A s we come to the end of Leuven2009, our thoughts turn to another year in the EYP cal-endar and new a generation of delegates. One

question that every national committee will be asking itself, if they have not already done so; is how they can ensure that they select the “best’’ delegates. Of course many delegates have already been selected to represent their countries at Helsinki and Tromsø and thus it will be too late for their respective NCs to seriously recon-sider their selection policies in time. However, in the interest of maintaining the high standards that EYP International has experienced in the past, we feel that it is vital that selection policy be a subject of ongoing discussion.

Of course, this requires a definition of what would be considered to be the “best”, or ideal delegate. Whilst this concept is naturally, open to debate, we have decided to define that the best delegates are the individu-als that gain the most from the EYP experience and also have the most to offer as alumni in the future. We un-derstand that not everyone we select will be perfect, no one is, but this is no reason to limit our-selves by lowering our expectations. We think that if we can put together the best selection policy, then the best delegates are likely to follow.

There would be no need to write this article if there were no problems with the way in which some delegates are be-ing selected. A terrible fact of life is that many of the people who we meet at our first International Session will never return to EYP. Perhaps for some, their absence is not out of choice, but it is a failing of our selection procedure that we both allow potentially excellent delegates to slip through the net and that frankly, some delegates should never have been selected. Secondly, we feel that international alumni are made up from only a few countries. Whilst countries like the UK and Ireland are at a natural advantage, many EYP national organisations must be looking to provide more officials to create more balanced officials teams.

There are currently two dominant methods of selecting delegations; sending a group of hand-picked individuals or a team from a school or other establishment. We will now look at the pros and cons of each system and attempt to establish which is the most effective. Team selection has some significant benefits, perhaps the strongest of which is that it can be very easy to get schools involved and enthu-siastic. The idea of sending only your school to represent your home country in some magical, far-off land (not Liv-erpool) acts as a massive motivator to get involved. This is why EYP UK can reach nearly 1,000 students a year. But

Matthew Sheridan and James Benge analyse the intricacies of how national committees select their

By James Benge and Matthew Sheridan

Individual or groups: is there

Delegate at an IS

Chair at an IS

Journalist at an IS

VP at an IS

President at an IS

Use at your national committee

0 50 100 150 200 250

Your EYP futures

12 Summer Leuven’| July 25th 2009

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a perfect way to select delegates?

to get this number of schools involved would require signifi-cant efforts and a sizeable alumni base who can reach out to as many schools as possible. One national session with only a few schools and no regional ones mean that there will not be a significant enough base to choose from. A second problem is that delegates who are selected are not ‘well-versed’ in how an International Session works. Working with school teams means that they are not well prepared for working with people that they do not know, let alone from different countries and cultures, and may have difficulties when faced with the high pressure environment of an International Session.

As for the shortcomings of individual selection, there can be problems in creating a base of interested parties who are willing to attend sessions, as it is more difficult to get schools involved. This is particularly the case with newer organisations, such as EYP Albania. Jon Vrushi (AL) says that, ‘structured communication with schools is more difficult at the moment because we don’t have a national database of schools.’ Organ-isers have to get delegates involved on their own and this se-verely limits the number of schools they are able to involve in their national sessions. In the case of Albania, it may be some time before they can be certain they have a big enough pool to select the very best from.

What are the strengths of this system? For one thing, there is the special connection that each individual develops with the organisation and their fellow alumni, particularly their delegation. People are selected for their individual and unique attributes and are brought together to create the most diverse, yet cohesive delegation possible. Every delegate is considered fairly and no-one suffers due to the possibility of a poor team holding back an exceptional delegate. In contrast, selecting an entire team means that some inconsistencies in standards and by its nature not everyone will reach the same standard. The strengths of individual selection are apparent in the huge numbers of alumni selected by EYP IE who stay involved after their first international session. Adrian Clarke (IE) summed this up best by telling us, ‘there is a greater sense of personal responsibility when you have been selected and this leads to a greater desire to participate.’

As far as we are concerned, the best way of selecting the best delegates for International Sessions is by choosing them as individuals. Delegations can be selected to fulfil every possible criterion and we do not believe it is a coincidence that those who are selected individually tend to be more willing and ea-ger to come back. There are however, some alternatives and ways which could theoretically allow us to create a better sys-

tem. Some EYP organisations have attempted to mix and match, sending half of their delegates from the same team and hand-picking the other half. Whilst this sounds like the best of both worlds we believe that this could create divides amongst team members if it were carried. There is a reason why we do not put four people from the same country on the same committee – how easy would it be for individuals to join a team of people who have known each other for years? Another selection method practiced has been the process of writing motivation essays and se-lecting the most impressive pieces. We want to make it clear that this method can find, and has found, very pas-sionate EYPers. However are written English skills really enough to judge a person’s potential? This would certainly act as a useful complementary piece when selecting, but organisations must do their best to create an EYP experi-ence prior to stepping on to the international stage.

At the beginning of this article we began with a defi-nition of what we felt made the best delegate, a defini-tion many of you may have disagreed with. And in this we think we come to the most important issue we face. When we started this article we set out to try and find the best system for selecting delegates, which we believe we have done. To be honest, this article started out as little more than an argument between the Irish and the Brit-ish, with each of us certain our system is best. However, serious thought has led to interesting debate and surpris-ing conclusions. But many of you will not agree with our findings and we think this may be because there is no consensus on what national committees are selecting. There will always be issues selecting the right delegates if we do not know what sort of delegate we are looking for. Many organisations place a large amount of emphasis on language skills and ability to debate, whereas others focus on delegates who work well in teams. We believe that common guidelines should exist so that every na-tional committee has an idea of what they are looking for when they select future alumni. We strongly believe in the independence of each and every NC when it comes to selecting the future of our organisation but we believe that a widely available, broad set of guidelines would en-sure some form of consistency of standards. As we stated earlier in the article we believe that every EYP organisa-tion should be looking for alumni who can both give and gain from EYP and in doing so can provide us with a brighter future.

Summer Leuven’ | July 25th 2009 13

delegates, and offer their informed opinions on the topic

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Piracy is the art of illegally copying software and media products. Piracy is highly il-

legal, though it does not contradict the “five pillars of pirating”, i.e. the foundations of a pirate’s life where looting, pillaging, boating, fancy and rape are included.

People who are caught commit-ting piracy are often tried in court or sometimes forced to walk the plank without a fair trial since the judge may have been bribed by the interna-tional media/software co-operations. There are a number of problems that piracy causes in our society, including economic instability at a micro and macro-economic level, slower inter-net and a stronger socialist opposi-tion. Thus, piracy is a malicious virus, infecting the wellbeing of our society, and so it must remain illegal.

As the meek and naïve college student illegally downloads music, he may need to be connected to the internet. Piracy tends to entice na-ïve college students with promises of high bandwidth which usually works for the first few of downloads. After a week, though, it takes a year or so to download a kilobyte. As the band-width is overloaded by the video jour-no, Pascal Hiltenbrandt’s attempted

downloading of a pirated edition of Photoshop for his crashed laptop, other honest citizens are incapable of properly using internet.

Piracy means that rich people will become poorer as their property is sto-len by a mere college student. Hard-working musicians feel that they are being abused since a big proportion of their target audience no longer legally

pays for their goods. As seen in South Park, Britney Spears now must down-grade her private jet to the one she used to have last month. The CEOs of multinational media companies are offended by the fact that their efforts in marketing and producing music are in vain. The aforementioned facts rather upsetting for the proud and

diligent capitalist, Marxist historians may interpret this as “a step closer to the fall of capitalism.”

These poor college students must learn that everything is not free in life. If I am to quote Adam Smith, the mastermind behind The Wealth of Nations, “there ain’t no such thing as a free lunch.” Although being heavily funded by “tuition fees”, colleges con-tinue to download illegally. Scholars believe that they do this in protest to the current world political system of capitalism. As most college students are still in their “rebellious” period of life, it is believed that they tend to turn to socialism, or even worse, com-munism.

In conclusion, piracy is a bad in-fluence on our society. It destabilizes the well-being of the rich and fa-mous, preventing the consumption of fancy goods, which is valuable fuel to a national economy. Piracy causes slower internet as almost all band-width is eaten by a cheeky video edi-tor Pascal. Now that the number of college pirates has rapidly risen over a short period of time, it is plausible that communism will once again gain strength and rise from the ashes, ready to combat the comfort of our market-oriented economy. Having taken the aforementioned points into consider-ation, it is most beneficial for society to keep piracy as an illegal act against the law and state. So, set yer sails ‘n prog yer daggers at th’ scallywags!

Captain Hook, you’re hooked!By Elizabeth Gheorghe

The journos need to make a very quick special mention to Sandro (GE) who officially saved the Goose’s behind, and selflessly gave up the use of his camera to the journo team – Sandro, we salute you!

Thank you, Sandro

14 Summer Leuven’| July 25th 2009

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Summer Leuven’ | July 25th 2009 15

From being considered the worst form of government to the ideal: the idea of de-

mocracy has certainly developed since its origins in Ancient Greece. But can it develop further still?

Defining what exactly democracy is, can be a tough task. While it is something whose existence, or non-existence, is central to how we lead our everyday lives, its implications are difficult to put into words; such is its conceptual state. Some things, how-ever, are more or less agreed upon. One central democratic principle is that people should, as far as possible, participate in the making of decisions that affect them directly. How people are to be represented, how they can participate in a decision-making processes and, balancing different opinions on this matter is where the democratic process becomes tricky. It is in these nuances it becomes evident

that democracy is not limited to a set definition, but is a work in progress.

For many practical reasons, rep-resentation of the people is a central feature of most modern democracies. How this representation is done dif-fers greatly between countries. Gen-erally, accepting the decision of a majority vote and the fairness of this procedure applies to most western democracies. While majority deci-sions are practical, they are not en-tirely unproblematic. Majority deci-sions can be measured in a number of ways; in constituencies, by elected government officials, by the nation as a whole or through supranational bodies such as the EU. Once a rele-vant majority has been sorted out, we are still left with one crucial question; in a system of majority rule, how can the interests of permanent minority groups best be taken into consider-ation? As some groups are bound to be in constant opposition to major-ity interests, not taking their voices into consideration would be against the very core ideas of democracy as representation of the people.

Consensus or compromise are

both often seen as ideal solutions to finding common ground, but in many cases it is neither possible nor desirable. It is both easier and more plausible to encourage such a settle-ment if it is interests rather than principles that are in conflict. When such a settlement is not possible, the natural solution is satisfying the will of the majority. While this is clearly the most ‘democratic’ thing to do, undermining specific minorities over a longer time span may very well turn into a threat to those institutions not representing their interests. It is therefore in the best interest of the majority to find solutions that also reflect the principles of these groups.

We have come a long way in estab-lishing democratic institutions, but it remains an ongoing project rather than a safe, secure achievement. There are still many challenges that need to be confronted in order to go even further. If we began to discuss creating and improving democracy rather than defending the one we have, I believe we would have a more convincing slogan.

By Ingrid Melvaer

Democracy – A work in progress

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For three days now LIBE 1 have all been locked in a room with loads of post-

its, flip-chart papers and a huge whiteboard. They have consumed an amazing amount of water and gone through too many perma-nent markers (occasionally for-getting not to use them on the whiteboard…)

But more importantly I have had the privilege to observe the continu-ation of the journey you startet on in Borzee, and how you have further developed yourselves from being 15 individuals to become one team. Working together, helping each other and challenging each other.

They have clearly done their homework, but already eyes were blinking during the first day of committee work, I wonder whether they don´t get enough sleep? Maybe the reason for this is an incident involving a jar of pickles in Stavros´ room late one night after Eurovil-

lage. The jar presumably ended up underneath Stavros´ bed, so if the cleaning lady has not been there yet I am not surprised that he finds it hard to sleep! Despite the tiredness, in no time there were post-its everywhere. People were crawling on the floor, organising the post-its and discuss-ing them. Though there were other times when they went for a walk, and talked about everything except what they were supposed to, but I am sure this only makes you even better prepared for GA.

The fact that in both Opening Ceremony and in the opening of General Assembly the majority of the speakers mentioned this topic as one of the most pressing issues regarding the future of Europe is proof of how important your topic is. I am proud to say that you definitely do not lack interest nor commitment, you have been ever passionate during commit-

tee work.There have been challenges during

committee work, but when the big-gest problem is deciphering people´s handwriting, I think you can see that it really went very smoothly! We have had time for some fun as well in addition to all the serious stuff, doing some questionable rolling on the floor with a coin and a lot of close contact involving matchsticks and a polo. You have also kept your humour when talking about the topic; ”Immigrants are products, 6 in a bag” should show you what I mean…

Committee dinner was a real plea-sure. What can be better than spend-ing the evening with nice food, good beer and LIBE 1? I feel enriched now that I know that Frederico actually has eaten frog and Mary convinced me to explore the world of ostrich meat with her.

Now you are sitting in the Euro-pean Parliament, having GA, and in about half an hour your motion for a resoultion is up for debate. And to quote Stacey ”I really can´t decide since everyone is so intellegent – I re-ally cant!” referring to who was going to hold which speech. You are intel-ligent, you have worked hard, now it is time to do what you are best at and enjoy it.

I hope you have enjoyed your stay here in Belgium. Although I have not always had the opportunity to spend as much time with you as I would have liked, it has been a true pleasure to see how you have developed. Soon we will have to part, but it is with a heavy heart that I will leave. Hope-fully I will meet you all again some-day, somewhere, I am already looking forward to it. So long, Rock on!

Yours forever Whiteboard cleaner


Liberty, Egality and Fraternity Victoria Wilkinson fondly recalls the highs and lows of her time with LIBE I

16 Summer Leuven’| July 25th 2009

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I’m Leuven’ itMagazine, Issue 3, Supplement

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Spot the difference

Eyeing it up: Spot the four differences and win absolutely nothing other than our respect, which according to new stock prices is worth 3.2 cents. Congratulations to those of you who invested in Los Team Editores Ltd

Separated at birth

Ron Weasley

Martin Saar

Pascal Hiltbrand

Jack Black Nelli FurtadoKaat Vandervelde

20 Summer Leuven’| July 25th 2009

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Summer Leuven’ | July 25th 2009 21

It is strange how EYP goes against all the natural laws. During EYP sessions the continuity of space and time simply does not exist. Time goes twice or

three times faster compared to everyday life.

This is exactly what happened here in Leuven over the past week. When we all went to Borzee, where we enjoyed teambuilding, parties and socializing, no one could possibly imagine or think about the end. Still, all of a sudden, we find ourselves at GA, the very last stage of the Session.

DROI went through this process as well. After only two days of teambuilding, 15 young people coming from very different countries and cultures were able to make each other feel like they had been best friends for years and years!

Eager to begin the discussion and present their ideas, DROI II started committee work with a very rich brainstorming. These young people are eager to have they say and contributed passionately with their ideas in shaping the future.

The topic that they faced is not the easiest one. Actually it seems to be a taboo for people in Europe to speak about Western paternalism in the judicial system. This sensitive topic allowed them to discuss different domains and fields from legislative, diplomatic, national and moral. They discussed several specific points relating to nations who are affected by the decisions of the International Criminal Court, while all the time considering the importance of a country’s cultural background.

Looking at international relations, they noticed problems related to countries that have not yet recognised the ICC. Susanna (SE) pointed that we cannot have a fair ICC if Russia and USA do not ratify the Rome Statute. Also, another strong suggestion given by Bowdevijn (NL) was to increase cooperation between Europol and Eurojust with

the International Criminal Court for a more effective crime tracing. Even though the resolution proposed by DROI II is not the longest one, they are all happy to have worked so hard together and phrased such a concise and explicit resolution.

After three days of academic discussion they deserve a delicious committee dinner all together to celebrate the outcome of their job and the nomination of Thomas (CH) in top 5 hottest females. Italian food, wine and some warm chats between friends were exactly what was needed. Personally, I really enjoyed the conversation with Philine (DE), Laura (ES) and our lovely president Ance, and certainly a couple of glasses of wine were helpful to make the discussion more sincere and friendly. Watching them while speak to each other about their interests and their daily life while strengthening the bonds they already had created was just beautiful.

They are so sophisticated and complex. One finds all kinds of personalities in this committee, and this is what makes them different and culturally rich. The absolute majority of girls turned out to be the sweetest part of the whole process that this lovely committee went through. Even though I knew since the beginning that DROI II would make me proud, I never thought about having such a nice time with them!

With much love, I wish you good luck DROI II and hope to see you again in the near future.

How time flies when you are having fun!Jon Vrushi uses his brain and muscles to come up with yet another beauty


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I have done everything I can for my committee”, the words of chairess Lena Aristodemou.

The committee on Environment, Public health and Food safety I, hav-ing spent the last three days discuss-ing, debating, deciding and delib-erating, have irrevocably learned an invaluable lesson, what it takes to bal-ance respect for differences in opinion without impinging on the achieve-ment of a common consensus.

The topic of the protection of rights versus legal grounding is a difficult one and required an open minded approach. ENVI I have formed a cre-ative resolution, the fruit of thinking outside of the box, whilst ensuring to remain energetic and engaged.

Constructive committee work was the culmination of intense dia-logue and thorough examination of research. Potential points were com-piled and the committee were swift in getting down to some serious work. The committee’s ‘talk it out’ approach served to ensure that no details were ignored. With the standard of dis-cussion remaining consistently high,

some tense moments stemming from the committees strongest quality, hon-esty, were unavoidable. However, the committee fundamentally agreed that “one person’s rights end where others rights start”, the core of the topic.

During the course of their discus-sions, many interesting routes were explored such as creative forms of advertising stemming from Melissas’ (FI) explanation of “black hearts on walls” a collection of drawings which served to encourage smokers to cut the habit. Niksu (HR) became something of a statistics expert which benefited the discussion as a whole, whilst add-ing that the committee were “fighting for non-smokers too”. Street figher seved as the ideal recess between dis-cussions, a first for some members of the committee with Monika (CZ) and Viktoriia’s (UA) glimmering smiles never faltering.

Resolution typing was efficient and ran smoothly with the committee utilis-ing their note taking system fully. While each member took individual notes, dedicated minute takers ensured that the discussions were

effectively documented. One could not write about this

committee without a mention of committee dinner, a night of Moroc-can cuisine, quality conversation and complete relaxation which saw ENVI I titter at the lighter moments of the session. Len (NL) merely “wanted a cup of tea” and extravagant chalices of mint tea served accompanied with orange zest were savoured. Eugene (RU), Niksa (HR) and Nicolas (CY) were more than keen to take some language lessons from their journo and with smiling faces and full stom-achs the committee departed for some clubbing. ENVI I was also well pre-sented in Euroconcert on Thursday night with Niksa’s inspiring rendition of a national song.

Striking chair Lena, celebrated her birthday on Friday, with the devoted committee singing her a very Happy Birthday.Watching ENVI I sit in gen-eral assembly united after the chal-lenge that was achieving the dynamics of a team personifies the very core of what this session stands for; democ-racy, a work in progress.

Aside: As the journalist of ENVI I, I would like to extend every good wish to the committee members in the future. Being an International Journalist has been a remarkable expe-rience and I was touched to hear that I was asked after when not present in ENVI I headquarters. It has been a pleasure getting to know all of you, each with your own individual quirks and talents.

Oh, so ENVI-ting...In an article straight from the “black“ heart, Adrian Clarke explains why he will be sad to say goodbye to their “individual quirks and talents”


22 Summer Leuven’| July 25th 2009

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Summer Leuven’ | July 25th 2009 23

If there was one thing from Leuven ’09 that I could single out to commend

the committee on Culture and Education on …well I guess I’d be a better journalist; but I simply cannot say enough to convey just how outstanding this committee has been and just how special this group of friends has been in their own right.

The committee has had a topical, challenging and at times controversial topic. It was obvious that they were passionate and engaged with this topic form the word go. Their concise, thought out and intriguing approaches to

the many building blocks of their commendable resolution including; their promotion of vocational training, competitiveness amongst tertiary level education fees and development of the Life Long Learning programme were but a few of the many Tour de Forces these bright young minds instigated.

These thirteen model young European citizens have been a shining example of everything EYP stands for – participation, teamwork and friendship. It has been an absolute privilege to observe you all on your journey through this session and document every detail I could. Whilst I unfortunately could not have been with you for as much time as I would’ve liked; what I saw you create in teambuilding amazed me, what I heard you say in committee work inspired me, and what I found

in you as a group touched me.Your ideas were solid, your

opinions supported and your voices clear. Whilst I was not fortunate enough to witness your debate before handing in this article, I have the utmost confidence that you performed to the best of your ability and did me, and most importantly yourselves, proud.

I want to say thank you to each and every one of you for what you contributed to the committee and to the session. You have made this experience as rewarding for me as I hope that we as a journalist have done so for you. Congratulations to you all on everything you have accomplished over the last 10 days and I sincerely hope to see each and every one of you again in EYP. Keep in touch and never stop asking yourselves ‘’Can You Lick That?’’


No challenge too diffiCULTA veritable tour de force. In a bid to become a better journalist, Matthew Sheridan calls on his commit-tee to never stop asking themselves if they can lick that

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24 Summer Leuven’| July 25th 2009

Throughout this session I have had the privilege of watching a group of 15

young people become friends, learn about each other and discuss their views. Whilst I have not been able to spend as much time with you as I would have liked, I do not think it would be possible to spend enough time with you guys short of spending every moment avail-able with you. As you read this the session is drawing to a close and I hope you will look back on your time in LIBE II with great fond-ness.

One memory that particularly stands out for me was when you de-signed vehicles where every commit-tee member was a part of the vehicle. It was, quite literally, a great definition of how the group was moving forward and also acted as an important insight into group dynamics and what you all

felt your role in the com-mittee was. You were all contrib-

uting in y o u r

own unique way but like a machine you all needed to be working in har-mony to be successful.

Debate throughout committee work was always intense and con-structive and, although you may be disappointed that you encountered some difficulties in the latter stages of your work, this debate ensured that you understood your topic consider-ably better. Committee work never goes perfect and in the long term you will gain more from the difficulties you encountered than if you had had a perfect committee work. The heat-ed nature of debate brought out the best in your teamwork skills. On the subject of all things heated, our com-mittee room truly was as warm as an oven on the sun. Rarely have I seen people leaving a committee room, not just mentally exhausted, but also drenched in sweat.

Of course it has not been all work, work, work. Committee dinner was an excellent opportunity for us to get to know each other through the little-used means of conversation.

What more could anyone ask for than good food and drink with a group of friends?

In the words of Frank Sinatra, the end is near and so we face the final curtain. It has been a pleasure to re-cord your experiences in Leuven. I hope that in years to come you will remember your time here fondly and I would urge you to keep up the friend-ships you have made. Congratulations and I am sure we will meet again in the future.


Ich LIeBE dich James Benge is going to miss LIBE II. What have you done to him?

“Committee work never goes perfect and in the long term you will gain more from the difficulties you en-countered than if you had had a perfect committee work.

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Quoting Jon Lajoie: “women are stupid and I don’t respect them”.

Yes, you have read it correctly and this could be the future of the EU if we do not take action right now. In a world where women are treated as second-class citizens or even worse, as sex-objects, FEMM has had a lot to do if they want to create a difference.

Trying to find root causes of the problem of violence against women, FEMM spent hours analysing the facts and statistics; no discussions or brainstorming. Having es-tablished that the contribution of societal norms, religious dogmas, traditions and biological differences are all factors which lead to gender-inequality and violence against wom-an, it was now time for action and discussion. With time passing by really quickly, Ruben (NL) had to intervene to help speed along the process.

Feeling the time pressure, FEMM finally got down to discussion. “Standardising” became the key word for the next two days; standardising legislation in member states,

adopting a standardised method of collecting data, stan-dardising the legal age of marital consent to be set at 18 for all member states. Actually FEMM, probably uninten-tionally, pointed out a very important weakness of the EU; the gap between the member states. Although it has been more than 50 years since the EU was formed, it still lacks a strong, unified stance, especially on this subject. One quite recent and well known issue, the rejection of the Lisbon Treaty, proves that the EU still has a lot to work on when it comes to being a team.

Unfortunately, other than standardising, FEMM’ s most solid idea was data collection on gender-based violence and introducing lessons in schools on female directed violence. It appeared to me that FEMM did not aim as high as they could have and did not seem ready for a change either. In-stead of taking new actions and making improvements, FEMM chose to support the structures that already exist. In my opinion, FEMM did very well on keeping the status quo but had a hard time taking it to the next level, which is better protecting women against violence in society.

However, they bonded so tightly and formed a powerful committee spirit during teambuilding. FEMM will work hard to fight the lack of education and ignorance in the EU, best of luck in GA.


FEMM’s final fataleIn a not so “standardised” article, Buser Says an emotional goodbye to one of his favourite committees

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Saying that the past week has been intense is definitely an understatement. We have all worked so hard and tried to do our best to make this session an

unforgettable experience for everyone. By being here together in the capital of beer and home to the institutions of the EU, DEVE showed that the combination of intellectual and social delegates makes an awesome group for a committee.

It is amazing how they are the rulers of the floor during the parties and rulers of the stage in Euroconcert, especially with George (UK) dancing against a stripping pole and singing baritone. At the same time they rule the microphone as well by keeping the DEVE placard always in the air, with Julia (UA) asking to make an attack speech for every resolution and Alison (IE) spreading hundreds of post-its to her committee mates.

Having done some research about their topic that relates to European aid for sub-Saharan countries in the period of economic recession, in my opinion this is one of the most sensitive and broad topics. Yet they managed to deal handle it with professionalism, considering almost every single point that one can make out of this topic. This is quite obvious when you read the 20 operative clauses proposed by this committee. The discussion went from economic issues, to infrastructure, climate factors and much more.

While discussing the abuse of some African leaders who hold untraceable bank accounts in Switzerland, many saw

it necessary to find a solution for this, but David (CH) is sure that his country would never want to lose the privilege of billions just for the sake of democracy!

A very special idea came from Dirk (NL), who suggested ways to help Africa using specific expertise and methods to get rid of the economic and political dependency of the “Black Continent”. On the other hand, while discussing whether the EU should make democracy a condition for the exchange of aid, his fellow committee member Alison (IE) replies “even democratic governments have corrupt leaders. The regime is not the only problem. The real problem is found at leadership level”

With the longest and most extensive resolution drafted in this session, they have lots of reasons to be proud and confident of it.

Always being the latest for coffee and lunch break because of their hard work with the resolution, a proper meal in a French restaurant was the right reward. Even though I did not eat with them, I had one of my best evenings during the session and really enjoyed all the jokes. This committee has a very developed sense of humour. With jokes ranging from topics like dead babies to mothers and an array of amusing anecdotes, committee dinner turned out to be a very pleasant event.

Even though my very personal expectations of spotting tensions between delegates within the committee were not met, I can surely say that love is in the air in the DEVE committee. This helped to cool down the atmosphere when it got tense and to create a lovely mood around the committee.

Looking forward to meeting you again I send you my best wishes and greetings!

“Bite the Bullet”The devilishly handsome Jon Vrushi speaks out in the name of the “Black Continent”


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As seen in the previous issue, DROI I was prepar-ing for committee work

during teambuilding as thought-provoking games were prioritized over ordinary games. The del-egates learned more about each others’ strengths and weakness through discussions.

After taking a quick peek of what they were debating in commit-tee work, it was evident that they were against wars, emphasizing the fact that they are a group of young pacifists. The idea of violating human rights in order to impose them in an area, seemed rather distasteful for the delegates. In any family, there is always a black sheep, in DROI I – Severin the blond. Instead of fully participating in the in-depth discus-sion, he preferred to sing Britney Spears’ songs.

As the committee progressed to a deeper level, I realized that the discussion was very structured. The flip charts were no longer the white pieces of papers that I remembered them to be. Now it seemed that they had undergone an operation that. Writing a resolution on the univer-sality of human rights is difficult. If not, too difficult. Nonetheless they managed to stay on track thanks to a well-structured discussion. Any topic concerning human rights may be subjective, which led to the rising waves of emotions. The¬ tone seemed concerned and serious, proving the delegates’ commitment. This justi-fies the fact that they want to make a resolution that they can be proud of.

Although the debates held a sober tone, random comments bubbled

to the surface. A couple of the alpha males wondered what language human rights speak, whether the rights prefer to speak in English or Mandarin…? Since linguistics has been introduced, I can reveal that the whole committee spoke in tongues in the middle of the discussion. David forced his delegates to take a mouth-ful of water and sit on their knees and whenever they wanted to talk, they had to gargle.

David also let his committee run around the building while phrasing. Although some may prefer to lock delegates in a dark closet, this exem-plifies the fact that efficiency can be maximized by actively lowering the levels of stress, fatigue and boredom. I am sure that DROI I, like me, are itching to run out to grab some raspberry flavored ice cream. And besides, the weather is nice today.

What followed all the hard work was the infamous committee dinner. DROI I enjoyed a delicious meal of Italian pasta. I must say, it was deli-cious! With soft lights and pleasant music, the committee enjoyed their dinner. Henry destroyed the concept of eating as he played with his food,

forming a human organ on his plate. Duncan (NL) randomly dropped by after about thirty minutes and Ingvild kindly shared some of her dinner with him. After having swung by so many trees, Jungle George ordered some dessert. It was apparent that DROI I was enjoying themselves with good food and great beer. I must say, an awesome dinner became even more awesome after having been in the company of a wonderful committee.

As the DROI I journo, I would like to give all other committees a warning word; DROI I have reached their potential of writing a strong resolution on a subjective and dif-ficult topic. Good luck!


I really enDROId it Elisabeth Gheorghe is really going to miss DROI I, but not as much as she will miss the ice cream

“Any topic concerning hu-man rights may be subjec-tive, which led to the rising waves of emotions.

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Tennis balls, spider’s webs and blindfolds turned into pens, flip charts and re-

search notes. The joy is over, the hard work has begun.

At the beginning of the week, an ordinary classroom on the sixth floor of the university transformed into a debate hall. And the group of fun lov-ing, integrated, fantastic members of ENVI II metamorphosed into a seri-ous, well prepared and eager to work committee ready to face the problem of healthcare information.

Although the topic seems to be simple and nice, it is actually one of the most complex and difficult top-ics of the session. But there is noth-ing else in the world that ENVI II loves more than challenges. This time they did not only manage to complete their task but also spent extremely enriching and inspirational time to-gether. All of their work was precisely planned and they took it more than seriously – no distracting jokes during discussions, no falling asleep during phrasing, nothing but total concen-tration and whole-hearted contribu-tion to their work. Therefore, it is no surprise that ENVI II was the first to leave the committee work venue on Wednesday, fully satisfied with their resolution and not afraid of the ap-

proaching General Assembly.It is highly probable that ENVI II

shone during the General Assembly on Friday, too. With fantastic del-egates Lukas (CZ) and Halide (CY) making speeches, and Lara (RO), Ra-chel (IE) and Ariadne (GR) answering the points of debate. Charlotte (FR) will be reading the operative clauses translated into French, something that is not very common in EYP now-adays but the team was keen to do for a complete success.

However, it would be a grave exag-geration to describe ENVI II as total workaholics. Throughout the session they proved many times that they also know what it means to have great fun. Discos witnessed Karl (FN) or Laura (RO) bouncing in the middle of the dance floor. During committee din-ner at a seafood restaurant everyone found some time just to sit with each other and have an ordinary chat. Or simply at coffee breaks or lunches when one could easily have noticed all the committee sitting together by the table or on the stairs. These simple everyday activities have been like ‘the sticky toffee’: they glued everyone to-gether and let the members of ENVI II form a group of people who can co-operate with each other, who can

solve the most difficult problems of European healthcare and most im-portantly who have begun a fantastic friendship that will hopefully last for a long time.

Saying goodbye is never easy. Es-pecially if you spend many hours of watching people develop, im-prove themselves and slowly become friends. And even though ENVI II still has two more days of GA to rock and feel the EYP spirit, I already know that they will miss each other and that I will also miss them. To defeat the post-EYP-depression when we are all safely back home, all that we can do is to have faith that the committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety II will meet again soon and next time we will try to heal the world.


Let’s heal the worldZosia Wasik grabs the tissues, chokes back her tears, and takes a deep breath before she writes her farewell fanfare for ENVI II

“These simple everyday activities have been like ‘the sticky toffee’: they glued ev-eryone together.

28 Summer Leuven’| July 25th 2009

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Walking out of the com-mittee work venue on Wednesday night, the

committee on Foreign Affairs were all smiles. The happy faces were not just because they had finished their resolution, but the manner in which they did it.

With AFET-man in the lead, the committee has been joking around a lot and the mood has always been ex-tremely positive. Still, this has not dis-tracted them from their goal of bring-ing democracy to Belarus, they even managed to finish ahead of schedule.

How did they manage to do that? Was it at the expense of the quality of the resolution? Most certainly not! According to Lazslo (RO), also known as AFET-man, the secret of their suc-cess lies in the trust they have in each other and in their great cooperation.

During breaks they like to hang out with each other, and these “hang out sessions” have generated enough material for an entire “Rumour has it” column for themselves... Since this is a committee article I unfortunately can not include it all, but I can at least give you a taste of what AFET I is like: Love within the committee is a regu-lar occurrence, AFET-man has got some lady related issues and they have even introduced “committee showers” (why, oh why did we not have those when I was a delegate?!).

Even though the fun and games have been a very big part of AFET I, they all came here for a different rea-son - Belarus. They have been working hard at all times and allowed nothing to distract them from achieving their goal. “The passion about the topic is probably the greatest thing about our

committee” said Jorge (ESP). Where the passion with which they have been working is coming from is for me unknown, but knowing AFET I its ideals could probably be found in the Mandela quote “How can I be free when my people are in chains?”

They did finish ahead of schedule, but just like outside skies were not al-ways blue. A lot of time was spent de-bating the EU’s role in foreign affairs and many heated discussions were held on whether Belarus is a dictator-

ship or an authoritarian regime, but at least they were discussing in a demo-cratic way. On the whole though, it was rather smooth sailing and already on Tuesday night they were more or less finished. This allowed them to really celebrate and enjoy committee dinner, I can assure you they most certainly took advantage of this. I am not going to go into detail, let’s just say that spirits were not down, but downed.

As these last few lines might be the last you are going to hear from me, I will use them to thank you for this session which I hope has been as great a ride for you as it has been for me. An international session is always an amazing journey, but watching you as a committee has really made this spe-cial for me. I have never seen a com-mittee which has been enjoying work-ing together so much before – when I asked of you what was the best thing about the session has been, you all answered that you were having such a good time in your committee. Now, go to the farewell party tonight and show everyone what it is that you do best – have a really good time!


AFET-Man: each sold separately

Our very own superhero Gustaf Danielsson finds himself looking on enviously at the AFET-Man’s han-dling of “lady related issues”

“A lot of time was spent debating the EU’s role in foreign affairs and many heated discussions were held on whether Belarus is a dictatorship or an author-itarian regime.

Summer Leuven’ | July 25th 2009 29

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30 Summer Leuven’| July 25th 2009

The top floor for the top minds. For the last few days, the seventh floor of the language fac-ulty of the University of Leuven has been the

home of the committee of economic and monetary af-fairs. The weather has been unpredictable to say the least, but the work effort of the committee has been as steady as the clock bell outside the window which has been kind enough to interrupt them by chiming every 15 minutes and hour.

For the last year, not one day has gone by without the financial cri-sis appearing in the pa-per or in the news and as the session has passed, I have been able to see it first hand in my wallet, so naturally I was really ex-ited to see what this com-mittee could do to help. However, it is probably one of the most difficult and complex topics EYP has ever seen, so I did not hold my breath. But then, like so many times before you impressed and surprised me - I have never seen such a well prepared committee in my life. The fact that the elevator did not cave under the sheer weight of the research papers that you brought with you is beyond my compre-hension. Between them, Ingrid (NO), Alessandro (IT) and Ilmir (RU) had read, understood and analysed more pages than I have read in my life. However, this is a topic even the world’s top economists struggle with, so just because they were well prepared, it does not mean they found it easy. Halfway through the second day of committee work, they still had not agreed on a main direction for the resolution. “Economies follow a certain pattern” ar-gued some. “To a certain extent they do”, Sophie (IE) and Valeri (BL) agreed, “but it is impossible to make fully ac-curate predictions of the future” they continued. Economic models are just ideas and predictions, there are no absolute

truths and this has been a major problem throughout the discussions. Finally, at the bisector of committee work, after spending one and a half days arguing about technicalities, they reached a breakthrough, started compromising and agreed on some main points that would colour the reso-lution. Eventually things started to go a bit smoother and they remembered what they concluded during teambuild-ing – “experience is making mistakes”. When on the topic of mistakes, I think it is a good idea to mention some things that happened during commit-tee dinners. The lovely delegates of ECON are truly com-mitted to the “EYP-spirit” in their willingness to try new things, but at times it can get a little out of hand. At the res-taurant they started ordering things from the menu without

knowing what it was. This resulted in a wide variety of animals of questionable edibility show-ing up at the table and it was not always to the content-ment of the person who ordered it. With the reso-lution finished not even frog legs could get them down and the mood

was definitely better than the food. Now time is running out and when you get this pa-per I might already have spoken to some of you for the last time so I will take this opportunity to say some last words. When I first met you, you told me why you were awesome, now I will tell you why I agree. It is not because you were ridiculously well prepared or that you are extremely com-mitted to what you do, but because of your extraordinary ability to improve, and the phase at which you do it. Half way through committee work you had nothing, but in GA prep, less than two days later the biggest problem you could find was how to work the voting buttons in the EP. In writ-ing this, your resolution has yet to be debated, but no mat-ter how it goes I am sure this ability makes you destined for greatness.

Gustaf Danielsson has food and money on his mind


Restaurant Roulette

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Have you got a little brother or sister? Have you ever tried to

explain to him or her what exactly do you do at an EYP session?

The fantastic delegates of the Com-mittee on Employment and Social Af-fairs would not have any problems with it. Here you are, their topic: “Banks could not work properly be-cause of people borrowing money they cannot pay back causing people to lose money and jobs: How can we help people to get their money and jobs back so they can live happily ever after?”. With this kind of attitude ev-erything seems to be easier, does it not?

Throughout the session the del-egates have presented an endless list of things that impressed me. One of them which distinguished EMPL from the other committees that I have met was the ability of combining hard work with great fun. Each time I had the opportunity to meet those mar-velous delegates, I could notice fifteen people equally contributing to their debate, exchanging opinions, argu-ing sometimes but always in a good mood and with smiles on their faces. They have never run out of creative ideas that made their committee work

more exciting and simply unforget-table. When asked what they remem-ber from the committee work, with-out any hesitation they told me about squeezing Panayiotis (CY) whilst ly-ing on him. This drop of joy has not disturbed the delegates as they con-tinue to work efficiently and to write a very good resolution.

What really made EMPL a special committee was actually not the fact that they all enjoyed their time dur-ing committee work, but that they en-joyed it even more afterwards. It was easy to notice members of this com-mittee hanging around together in the evenings and during their breaks in work. What is more, it has been a very long time since I last had such great fun as I did during EMPL committee dinner when we were playing “Never ever have I ever” game. Unfortunately, the majority of the facts that I found out about the delegates are not appro-priate enough to publish them. One thing is certain – the whole Commit-tee of Employment and Social Affairs is not as well behaved as it seems to be. They are very gifted instead, what

was easy to observe while watching Kate (RU) and Gustav (NO) perform at the Euroconcert. They proved that EMPL’s got talent!

I could not stop myself from smil-ing when I was looking at their happy faces posing in the photos in front of the Euroconcert venue or the Eu-ropean Parliament. In my opinion, they did everything to make their stay in Leuven both educational and entertaining. The look in their eyes says that EYP spirit is really inside them. Fortunately, they will have got a chance to show it during GA and yet at any other session. I really hope that I will have an opportunity to meet all of these fourteen great people again.


EMPL-oyed to promote Zosia Wasik can not stop smiling as she sees EYP spirit in her delegates’ eyes. All together now... Awww

“The look in their eyes says that EYP spirit is really in-side them...

Summer Leuven’ | July 25th 2009 31

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As I am writing, the resolu-tion of AFET II has been passed and I could not

have felt more proud.

When I first got to know which committee I would be journo-ing, my thoughts floated around the topic. How would it be approached? What would they focus on and how would the discussion be? AFET II was in my mind, more or less, synonymous with conflict. That thought is something that has changed quite a lot since.

The first person I met from this committee, wandering around on that very first day in Borzee, was Al-exander (BE). He was, much like me, eager to spot those few lucky people with a badge that said “AFET II”. Part from meeting Robert (PL), our search was rather futile. The next morning however, when we got up for break-fast and hikes, I finally met the com-mittee in all its glory for the very first time. Chatting as we went along I got to know some useful things, such as Laura (IT) has a passion for Italian cuisine, which comes in handy when

you are indecisive at an Italian restau-rant during committee dinner and need someone to choose for you. I also learned that session “womaniser” Matthew (UK) shares a passion for Britney Spears with his chair Oscar (UK).

Through serious and not-so-serious parts of committee work, I got to know the rest of what has become a closely knit team. “Through sickness and in health” and luckily back to health again was applied to Paul (GR) as we were wandering around the ven-ue equally keen on a couch to sleep on. Davor (HR), who’s more of a si-lent type, really impressed us all when

playing “Honey, tell me that you love me” with his attempts to get people to burst into laughter: at least if your name is not Lydia (IE) who was ice cold when needed, but the complete opposite the rest of the time. The same goes for Rebecca (FR), whose smile could possibly light up any room, regardless of how unsuccessful attempts at lighting up drinks are.

AFET II is a team built up by unique players that all compliment each other. Wim (NL) really makes for a solid base, and I am absolutely con-vinced it would not have been as solid a team without him. Radina (BG), part from being one of the most stun-ningly beautiful girls I have ever met, is really talented and well-articulated. Eriks (RU) however, it would seem has a preference for Scandinavians. Rumour has it that he is having some serious trouble deciding between An-nie (SE) and Maria (NO). Not that I can blame him; they are both abso-lute legends. The final bricks in what makes this team are Steliana (RO) and Tony (GE), both essential to making the team spectacular.

AFET II is more than words, more than a resolution and a mere topic. It is a unique group of people whom I am absolutely honoured to have met and got to know.


A FEaTher in the capIngrid Melvaer is feeling a whole range of emotions as her time with AFET II draws to a close

32 Summer Leuven’| July 25th 2009

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Understanding what is asked is half way to solv-ing the problem. The

main struggle for AFCO was that they did not know whether their committee topic should or should not focus on the opportunities of newer forms of technology more than any other solutions that could be offered.

To decrease political disengagement with the EU and increase democratic participation; AFCO took the discus-sion one step further and decided to focus on how to improve communica-tion between EU representatives and its citizens.

With this bold decision, the AFCO members first aimed to develop an EU identity that would not threaten national identity, because apparently Christian (RO) did not really feel Eu-ropean before his EYP odyssey began. Underlining the connection between the decreasing numbers of votes with the vague EU identity, AFCO came up with one of the most creative ideas I have ever observed so far. Offering cheap flights to different parts of EU for its citizens; Chrysanty (GR) sug-gested creating more opportunities for citizens to see other parts EU to help feel more European. Who could guess that the future of democracy was somehow connected to interrail-

ing?When it was time to talk about

a pan-EU media, Sonja (DE) has put me under the spotlight, “so why do you think Buser is here?” AFCO knew that the one way to create an EU identity is to realise the fact that nations tend to stick with their na-tional media, without realising the necessity of having multiple points of view. Perhaps EYP journalism could be the future of EU journalism, with multiple perspectives from different backgrounds.

Trying to take active action so that the EU hears its citizens, AFCO has put EU transparency in question. To increase the efficiency of input and output legitimacy, AFCO have pro-posed the creation of an office which will make simple overviews of laws

aiming to leave bureaucracy behind and close the gap between representa-tives of EU and its citizens.

The issue of mistrust issue was one of the trickiest obstacles on the way. What could be done in order for the EU to come closer to its citizens? Per-haps newer forms of technology is not only there to make life easier for the voters but also to update citizens on contemporary issues at EU level. Introducing visiting hours for EU citizens and promoting live stream-ing from the European Parliament, AFCO wants EU citizens to trust their representatives.

During their creative and enthusi-astic day, AFCO came up with some revolutionary changes that would provoke impassioned discussions dur-ing the General Assembly.


Interrail for democracyBuser Say ponders the meaning of life and the true reasons for why he is here in Leuven. Then we wake him up and make him write an article.

Summer Leuven’ | July 25th 2009 33

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Third floor: a room filled with empty PIPO juice bottles, cookie wrappings

and sheets of paper that are scat-tered all over the place. The abun-dance of scribbles, circles and lines on the whiteboard tell us that this is the room where CULT II has been residing for the past three days.

Watching my committee from the corner, they discuss the future of cul-tural heritage and how to save institu-tions from ‘scaling back and closing’. It is wonderful to see how the same qualities that prevailed during team-building are also very apparent in their committee work: all of them are

involved in the process, they are cre-ative when thinking of solutions, and most importantly they are dedicated to achieving their goal.

CULT II is, as I have also men-tioned in the previous article, a spe-cial bunch of people. They really are. The immense support that they of-fer to each other is admirable, and it all comes naturally. My guess is that this devotion has something to do with Dominik and myself being in the top four nominees for the hottest male and female of the session, and it makes me proud! Although, I do no know whether to be glad that they have nominated me (I feel so loved), or whether to be sad thinking that the nominations may not entirely repre-sent the general thought of the all par-ticipants of the session. Let’s just stick with the former.

As a part of CULT II, it proves that you do not stand alone. There was no mistake that the entire committee went through great lengths to support Valeriia in her campaigning for del-egate president. I doubt anyone could have missed the beautiful poster hang-ing at the entrance of the committee work venue. That poster was nothing

compared to the little artworks that could be found in their committee room. ‘Pimped’ badges, a CULT II logo consisting of actual culture on paper and origami birds are dispersed across their table, beautified the oth-

erwise very grim looking room. Very cute and very creative.

Tuesday night we all took some time off from committee work and went to a Japanese restaurant. The food was very tasty, very colourful and most importantly abundant. What should be mentioned is one particular meal we had, it was an assortment of sushi served on, and this is where it gets interesting, a miniature boat. All in all, dinner was a great success and it was especially nice to spend some time together outside of the pressure of committee work. Through gossip-ing and storytelling, I am sure that we all learned some new and very inter-esting things that evening. I sure did, to say the least…

It has been a rough few days, but it is delighting to see that every single member of CULT II still finds the en-ergy to smile. The little superheroes never stop surprising me, and I think I speak for Dominik as well in saying that they have exceeded all our expec-tations. We could not have asked for anything more and watching them from my little corner, I feel so proud.

One last thing though, what kind of sound would a Chicken Pilot make in another language? I wonder.

Pa-koo to you!


CULTivating new ideas Leonie Goettch is feeling nostalgic after nine days with CULT II

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In any session of the European Youth Parliament, it is fair to say that a productive General

Assembly is the supreme motiva-tion for delegates and chairs alike. “It is here when I feel like a true Parliamentarian, I feel at home”, Laura (IT).

In their mutual pursuit for logical and innovative resolutions to the is-sues of the times we live in, GA be-comes the pinnacle of days of work. At an International Session, GA could be described as a space where an au-dience willing to listen and yearning to make a difference congregate and

share in the democratic process. GA has, in the past, taken place in

some of Europe’s most magnificent buildings and elaborate municipal centres much to the delight of the In-ternational EYP community.

The European Parliament in Brus-sels will host the GA of the 61st Inter-national EYP Session. This is an in-credible honour for EYP Belgium and indeed for each and every delegate who has had the opportunity to open up their eyes to the home of Europe-an unity, governance and the mainte-nance of peace and pan-European co-operation. “At this centre of European unity, I feel sophisticated but oddly intimidated”, Matthew (UK).

To delegates, General Assembly is the practise of what they preach, the vocal expression of their deepest de-sires for change and the culmination

of hours of hard work, discussion and passion, and above all the giving of part of themselves for the good of the people of the world. The experience of GA in the European Parliament is, for delegates, “something which no words could describe”- Eni (AL).

In the words of our session Presi-dent, Ance Kaleja, “sessions take place in many wonderful and inspir-ing places but here, here we feel truly European; not only part of where the European dream happens but at one with how it happens”. Delegates can eagerly push the very buttons that their MEPs push and watch as the re-sult of their debates is counted.

Democracy may indeed be a work in progress but in the European Par-liament “Humble EYP feels so big” Christiane (AT)

In just a few days, the focus of the entire EYP community will move from Leuven to Hel-

sinki, Finland, for the 62nd Inter-national Session.

Helsinki 2009 will continue the great Scandinavian Tour of the EYP that began in Stockholm and will end in Tromso. The session has already been granted the ”Green Light” by the international office, which means that the session will definitely take place.

The Finnish weather in October will not certainly match summery Belgium but in all other aspects Hel-sinki will easily match its predecessors. Under the presidential leadership of Mr Hadrian Segond, 300 participants will experience 10 intense days of EYP at the very centre of the capital of Fin-land.

The official session theme ”Cre-ative Europe – Dynamic Europe” will

be closely followed throughout the session. After all, like the ambassador of the Finnish delegation said at the Opening Ceremony, “we certainly should not be the fish swimming with the flow”. Innovation brings together Finland, youth and Europe. Another aspect of the North is nature, of which the Helsinki’09 participants have the opportunity to enjoy during teambuilding at Korpilampi, roughly translated as ‘a pond in the outbacks’.

For all of you, Helsinki will be an

opportunity to continue as alumni; to be a journo or other offical. The first pre-session video by the organis-ing team is already published on the session website. There you can meet the Head Organisers of Helsinki’09: Krista Simberg and Ville Vasaramäki. We organisers will keep you up on the latest news for the next 92 days, so stay online!

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