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Brexit Chills EU's 60th Anniversary Celebration in Rome

Brexit Chills EU's 60th Anniversary Celebration in Rome

Both pro- and anti-EU protesters marched in Rome on March 25, as the Italian capital hosted leaders from the European Union's 27 member states to mark the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome, which created the European Economic Community.

Meanwhile, the president of the European Parliament, Antonio Tajani, posted on his official Twitter account: "I am very proud to be a European today!"

It also promises to protect European Union citizens better with reinforced external borders, preserve the achievements in social protection, further develop the single market, and make the European Union a global player despite its second largest economy, the United Kingdom leaving.

During a ceremony in Brussels earlier this week, Tajani said: "Europe is our freedom, Europe is our future and that is what we should hand on to our children; a future of prosperity, of peace and of freedom".

Anders Fogh Rasmussen, a former North Atlantic Treaty Organisation secretary-general and Danish prime minister, tweeted that "greater unity must come from more flexibility toward member states' visions".

"Unfortunately, there are instances where lessons have not been learnt".

Muscat argued that reflecting on the values that molded Europe was not about "being romantic".

Others in Italy, such as Senator Michela Montevecchi of Five Star anti-establishment movement - now leading in the polls with more than 30 per cent support among Italians - are less invested in whether the European Union survives. They make the European Union and its member states strong and able to promote universal values, such as human rights and the rule of law.

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He is one of thousands who say if Europe doesn't go forward toward full integration, it will go back - at the risk of bringing an end to 60 years of peace.

Muscat, whose country now holds the rotating Presidency of the Council of the European Union, argued that the European Union does deliver tangible results - once which are not even noticed when citizens cross borders or when consumers compare prices in the same currency. But at other marches and sit-ins, most celebrated the treaty. "We need a federation". This is our real test.

"The success of the Union hinges on our ability to implement the social pillar".

Muscat called Europeans to be ambitious for the future. "We should give our people the protection they expect, without confounding it with protectionism".

Poland may not accept the Rome Declaration, which will chart the European Union's course after Britain leaves, if the document does not touch upon issues Warsaw considers crucial, the country's prime minister said.

The leaders are deeply divided over the way forward nearly before they have started.

The "great predecessors" of today's leaders "at that time did not discuss multiple speeds, they did not devise exits, but despite all the tragic circumstances of the recent history, they placed all their faith in the unity of Europe", Tusk said. The unity of Europe is not a bureaucratic model.

In an apparent swipe his native Poland and at Hungary, which have faced criticism for violating democratic norms and interfering with the independence of the judiciary and press freedom, Mr Tusk said that European unity was less about bureaucracy than about values. "That is the true foundation of our unity".

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