Thursday, 17 February 2011 - Strasbourg
Explanation of vote:
Pino Arlacchi (S&D) - Mr President, Europe could do many things to support Egyptian democracy, and one of the most important would be to look at the events in Egypt as part of a genuine wave of democratisation.
In the space of a few weeks, a tyranny collapsed, and with it we have seen the collapse of a number of stereotypes such as the theory of a clash of civilisations.
No conflict of civilisations whatsoever is occurring in the Arab World today – exactly the opposite. Egyptian youngsters are putting their lives at risk for the same values that we hold. They are showing that democracy is a universal aspiration and that there are no cultures, religions or civilisations that are against it.
Nonetheless, an army of sceptics and doomsayers is at work today, diminishing or distorting the meaning of the Egyptian transition to democracy.
People are engaged in raising all sorts of doubts, describing the latest development as a ‘coup d’état’ as though these events have simply paved the way for an Islamic Government that will end up in another autocracy.
If we want to help the Egyptian people, we should be ready to counter these reactionary views of the unfolding of history.