posted on

Bar and Nikšić Celebrate Europe Day

Montenegro is decisively marching towards the European Union, sharing with it fundamental values of peace, cooperation, and solidarity, while also contributing with its unique cultural diversity. Through a series of cultural and educational activities in Bar and Nikšić, which attracted hundreds of citizens, including many children, this dedication to integration was clearly visible today.

The events organised within the framework of the European Tour symbolise the common path towards a better future within the European family.

A hiking tour was organised in Bar accompanied by an educational lesson titled “Let’s Talk About Europe,” as well as a visit to the monuments in Tuđemili, workshops for children, and a quiz “Symbols of Europe.”

To mark the occasion, Acting Director of the Directorate for European Territorial Cooperation at the Ministry of European Affairs, Miloš Marković, said that by celebrating Europe Day we pay tribute to the idea of unity, cooperation, and peace that has shaped our continent.

“Through challenges and triumphs, Europe has built bridges across differences, paving the way for a better future. Let this day be a reminder of our common values and the obligation to nurture them every day. United, we can overcome any challenge and achieve our common goals,” said Marković. He expressed satisfaction that elementary school students from Bar who participated in the creative workshops showed impressive knowledge about the European Union and, as he said, convinced us that Montenegro has youth it can rely on.

Head of Contracts, Finances, and Audit Department at the Delegation of the European Union to Montenegro, Agata Stasiak, said that this was a celebration of the principles of peace, unity, and solidarity in Europe that define the European Union.

“Bar is a unique and diverse city, which connects different cultures and communities, just like the EU,” stated Stasiak.

She urged municipalities throughout the country to become even more active and involved in the European integration process as Montenegro approaches the EU membership.

“Today’s celebrations in Bar are evidence of the joint commitment of both the government and local authorities supported by the EU. Together, we share the vision that Montenegro will soon become part of the EU family,” Stasiak concluded.

The conference “Nikšić Initiative European Capital of Culture 2030 – Benefits for the Community and Youth” was chosen to mark Europe Day in Nikšić.

An exhibition of works by students of the “Tibor” painting school and the “Art Centre” was held on the plateau of the House of Revolution, as well as the planting of a tree next to the Municipality building, sending a message about the importance of forests and trees for a greener and more beautiful Europe. During the conference, which was held at Technopolis, Mayor Marko Kovačević emphasised the importance of 9 May.

“As a local self-government in Nikšić, we strive to behave—in those areas where we can—as if Montenegro is already a member of the EU. In the previous period, through a series of projects which we implemented, I think that we have truly managed to send that message and help our country on the path towards the EU as a local self-government. I hope that very soon we will celebrate this day as a member of the EU, not forgetting, of course, all those sacrifices made by our ancestors in the fight against Nazism and fascism, which ended on 9 May 1945,” Kovačević concluded.

Acting Director General for the Coordination of EU Financial Support at the Ministry of European Affairs, Bojan Vujović, said that the EU accession process should not only lead us to a formal membership but also help us to gradually adopt European values.

“Every day, through all our work, both at the Ministry of European Affairs and in the government, as well as at the local level, we are not only working on creating new laws and adopting European regulations but also on adopting European values in all areas in order to become a better, fairer, and more European society,” Vujović concluded.

Deputy Head Cooperation Sector of the Delegation of the European Union to Montenegro, Liselotte Isaksson, praised the Municipality of Nikšić and its cultural scene for the candidacy for the European Capital of Culture, adding that this initiative represents an excellent opportunity to encourage creativity, dialogue, and cultural exchange, as well as to stimulate tourism, investment, and economic growth in the city.

“I am particularly impressed by the involvement of young people and persons with disabilities in this. Investing in cultural development and the education of young people not only broadens their horizons but we hope will also provide them with the opportunity to enter creative industries, which in turn can create new jobs. This is a sector that deserves much more attention in Montenegro,” Isaksson said. She added that today’s celebration in Nikšić is evidence of the joint commitment to the process of the European integration by both the government and local authorities. To celebrate Europe Day, activities within the European Tour were organised by the municipalities of Bar and Nikšić and the Ministry of European Affairs with the support of the Delegation of the European Union to Montenegro, as part of the EU4ME programme. The European Tour will continue its “journey” throughout Montenegro. There will be a cycling race in Nikšić, and next week numerous activities will be organised in Mojkovac, Berane, Žabljak, Petnjica, and Pljevlja.