On October 28th 2014, former president of Latvia Vaira Vīķe-Freiberga i gave a speech at the 13th edition of the Europe Lecture. Together with Jonathan Holslag i, she expressed her view on 'Europe in the World: Peace and Security'. The lecture was moderated by Tom de Bruijn i, alderman of The Hague and former permanent representative to the European Union.
In light of the current instability in Europe's neighbourhood and the recent power shifts in the international realm, the topic 'Peace and Security' is of major interest. How should Europe address the upcoming security challenges? What is the importance and meaning of Europe in the world?
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Photos by Ilse van Loon
'Peace and security' was the central topic of the 13th Europe Lecture. A topic well-suited for the two distinguished speakers of this years' lecture, former Latvian president Vaira Vīķe-Freiberga i and professor of global politics Jonathan Holslag i. Their common thread was that the global balance of power is shifting, much to the detriment of Europe. However, Europe has the resources and potential to regain much of what is being lost. This will require considerable effort, and a revaluation of some of the current societal, economic and political models.
Mrs. Vaira Vīķe-Freiberga was president of the Republic of Latvia from July 1999 to July 2007. She personally took care of the EU- and NATO-membership of Latvia. Now, Vaira Vike-Freiberga is president of the World Leadership Alliance 'Club de Madrid' and is concerned with the worldwide fostering of democratic development.
Jonathan Holslag is a China-specialist and lecturer International Politics at Brussels University. He has excellent knowledge of China and the rest of Asia, and regularly summarizes complex ideas in debates on international news channels as CNN, BBC, Bloomberg, CCTV and Al Jazeera.
Tom de Bruijn
Tom de Bruijn (1948) is alderman in the city of The Hague for the social liberal party. Between 2003 and 2011 mr. De Bruijn held one of the highest ranking posts in the diplomatic service of the Netherlands, that of permanent representative at the EU.