The WIB members of the "History and Politics" group came together on September 26th, 2023 in the liaison office of the European Parliament, partly because of the upcoming European elections, and listened to the informative lecture by Prof. Dr. Eckart Stratenschulte, who is a honorary professor at the Otto-Suhr-Institute for Political Science at the Freie Universität Berlin.
Located in the Office for European Integration Prof. Dr. Stratenschulte gave us a detailed insight into the work of the European Parliament, the European Commission, the European Council and the Council of the European Union, explained the demarcation features and corresponding areas of responsibility of the respective institutions and gave us some key data on the history of the founding of the EU. The Treaty of Maastricht, which was signed on November 1st, 1993 and thus came into force, can be seen as the first milestone in European Integration and currently celebrates its 30th anniversary. In terms of the European unification process, the entry into force of the treaty represents a historic moment that laid the foundations for the European Union in its current form. Furthermore, with the EU Treaty, the European Community developed into a political union and its members committed themselves not only to economic but also to close political cooperation on a wide range of issues.
The lecture was followed by a lively and interesting discussion, which ended with the opening of a buffet and subsequent bilateral talks. True to the motto of the first Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany, Konrad Adenauer, "The unity of Europe was a dream of a few. It became a hope for many. Today it is a necessity for us all." we will be looking at other historical and political issues at European level in the run-up to next year's elections.