Moldova is the country, among the former Soviet Union ones, that has succeeded the most in approaching the European Union. There is a strong support for European integration in the small state, situated between Romania and Ukraine, and independent in 1991. Russia has tried to involve Moldova in the Eurasia trade union but without success. Later in November, there will be election in Moldova and if the Communist Party comes to power, which is not to be excluded, the country might go in another, non-EU friendly direction. Today’s Moldova is governed by a coalition of liberal and social democratic parties. The party that Jarl Hjalmarson Foundation co-operates with, Partidul Liberal Democrat Din Moldova (PLDM) is part of the coalition.
As the very first step in the co-operation between the Foundation and PLDM, a youth conference was held in the capital of Moldova, Chisinau, on January 24-26 2014. Invited as participants, were young members of PLDM, most of them assistants to the Members of Parliament of the party.
PLDM was founded as late as in 2007 and they are still building the identity of the party. The theme of the conference was ideology and policymaking and how to navigate from one’s ideological basis when formulating policies. The Party Leader of PLDM and former Prime Minister in Moldova, Vlad Filat opened the seminar by talking about the importance of values that makes the party differ from others. On behalf of the Foundation, James Marriott, Assistant Secretary General of International Democrat Union (IDU) and Gustaf Hoffstedt, Member of the Swedish Parliament, joined as trainers.
James Marriott guided the participants through the main democratic principles, focusing especially on freedom and equality. In his last session he gave practical advice on how to make policies while the young politicians had to write their own policy proposals.
Gustaf Hoffstedt lectured on how to fight corruption, one of the biggest threats to democracy in the young Eastern European countries. Moreover, he talked about the core principles of a liberal democracy referring to the UN Declaration on Human Rights.
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