Today the European Christian Political Movement (ECPM) officially launched its campaign for the European elections, which is the first event of its kind among the European parties. This event took place in the European Parliament in Brussels, where the ECPM introduced its European manifesto and candidates for the European Parliament elections.
The ECPM manifesto has five spearheads: Human dignity, an economy that works for people, priority to family and marriage, freedom of faith, conscience and expression and fighting human trafficking.
“We can change European politics” MEP Peter van Dalen said. "As a Christian you can make the difference. You make the difference in voting, for instance with regard to the Estrela report which was rejected with a margin of only 7 votes!"
Van Dalen also spoke about the European Parliament Working Group on Freedom of Religion or Belief which he set up with his colleague Dennis de Jong MEP. Van Dalen: "We have succeeded in placing freedom of religion on top of the European foreign policy agenda." Van Dalen concluded that “especially in Europe, Christian politics matter!"
MEP Bas Belder said: "I consider this manifesto a great inspiration for my work in the European Parliament.”
ECPM president Peter Östman (leader of the Christian Democratic group in the Finnish Parliament) pointed out in his speech that there should be more attention for Small and Medium Enterprises (SME). As a former businessman he sees SME’s as the engine for the European economy. In the field of deregulation there are some good proposals from the European institutions. “It is now time that these proposals will be put in practice” Östman said.
Croatian ECPM candidate Ladislav Ilčić, leader of the Hrast party was one of the initiators of the referendum on the traditional marriage in Croatia. This referendum was won with a large majority. Other ECPM candidates for the coming European elections are Martina Döbrich from the German AUF (Arbeit, Umwelt, Familie) - Christen für Deutschland and Antoine Renard and Tobias Teuscher from French Force Vie party.