The EPC one year on: Picture imperfect

Authors:Steven Blockmans, Dylan Macchiarini Crosson
Date:16 October 2023
Document type:Featured EPC Observatory analysis

Often characterised as a European UN General Assembly, a marketplace for ideas and unscripted speed-dating between leaders of nearly 50 countries and four EU bodies, the European Political Community (EPC) is increasingly rudderless and unable to meet expectations.

President Macron’s brainchild, the EPC was inaugurated one year ago during a summit at Prague Castle to serve as a photo opportunity to signal a Europe-wide rejection of Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine. The EPC’s core message was amplified at a second summit at ‘Chateau’ Mimi in Moldova, a country itself divided by conflict and various tensions for decades.

In the absence of a pre-negotiated joint declaration, the mere image of 49 leaders, and a cameo appearance by the Belarusian opposition leader in exile, Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya, gathered for a third meeting at the historic Alhambra Palace would never have impressed President Putin more than simply receiving an unwritten postcard from lost acquaintances on a sightseeing trip to beautiful Granada. 

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