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Historical Archives of the EU mount exhibition marking 70 years of Schuman Declaration

To mark the 70th anniversary of the Schuman Declaration, the Florence-based Historical Archives of the European Union have mounted an exhibition entitled “Europe and Europeans 1950>2020”.

To mark the 70th anniversary of the Schuman Declaration, the Florence-based Historical Archives of the European Union have mounted an exhibition entitled “Europe and Europeans 1950>2020”. The exhibited documents, images and notes set out to raise awareness of the importance of the Declaration within the history of European integration, and stimulate reflection on its relevance in the EU of today and tomorrow. The exhibition in various languages is available at the HAEU website.

The declaration made by French Foreign Minister Robert Schuman on 9 May 1950 and inspired by the industrialist Jean Monnet contained a vision of a joint French and German coal and steel production, grounded on the belief that a common market in these two commodities would benefit the war-stricken European economies.

The Declaration leaves the door open for any country wishing to participate in building Europe through concrete achievements which first create a de facto solidarity. The establishment of the European Coal and Steel Community consolidated the goal of creating a broader internal market, which would bolster economic growth and eliminate barriers to trade between individual countries. The European project grew to encompass the economy, agriculture, environment, social and other political affairs, and above all, to bring perpetual peace and development and maintain peaceful relations.

Having sparked European integration, the Schuman Declaration is a turning point in Europe's history. In less than seven decades, it has led to the creation of a European Union of 27 Member States. Although this process was neither simple nor predetermined, it laid the foundations of an ever more complex network of relations between European countries.

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