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|Politics of the European Union
Europe–Democracy–Esperanto or E° D° E° (EDE) (in Esperanto: Eŭropo–Demokratio–Esperanto) is an electoral list, which participates in the European elections. The party's main platform is the introduction of Esperanto as the official language of the EU in order to make international communication more efficient and fair in economical and philosophical terms, based on the conclusions of a report by François Grin.
As Europe–Démocratie–Espéranto, the party first took part in an election in the European Parliament election, 2004, in France. Its German branch, Europa – Demokratie – Esperanto, failed to gather the 4000 signatures necessary to participate in the elections in Germany despite intense efforts (it was hampered by a late start).
The list's main goal is the promotion of Esperanto in the EU. In the medium–term, it wants Esperanto taught in schools Europe–wide, and in the long-term, it wants the EU to adopt Esperanto as its official language. In order to make this goal a reality, the EDE is striving to have list candidates in each country in the EU for the European Parliament election, 2009. Until now the organisation has only had branch offices in France and Germany.
Debate within Esperanto movement
While most Esperanto institutions such as Universala Esperanto-Asocio are by statute and in practice politically neutral, some discussion about the neutrality of EDE  has arisen. Specifically, there is concern over what other policies might through EDE be linked with Esperanto other than the advancement of Esperanto itself. German Esperanto writer Ulrich Matthias argues that in gaining broad support in Germany at least, EDE would be best served to identify with centrist positions advancing humanism, peace and environmentalism, as well as opposing "U.S. hegemony" in the correct fashion.
Because Esperanto is considered by many Esperanto speakers to be a worldwide movement, some fear that advancing the cause of Esperanto within the EU could cast the language as a European issue and hamper the progress of the language outside of Europe.
2004 Election results
The party did not set out to have a referendum on languages — instead, the EDE tries to set up Esperanto as an alternative to the twenty different official languages of the European Union, which leads enormous expenses.
The 2004 parliamentary election broke records for the number of parties participating, and the EDE became something of a poster child for protest parties, being picked out by national papers as an example of the ridiculous. It was described by Les Échos as one of several "crazy, anti-this or pro-that parties" running in the election. However because it was on the ballot in the vast majority of districts, it was one of the dozen parties selected by Les Échos to have its party platform published.
The EDE had lists in seven of the eight large voting districts of France and received around 0.15% of the vote in the European Election on 13 June 2004.
2009 Election results
The party aims to promote "true European international democracy.". The four principles laid out on the party's website include:
- The first criterion for democracy is the right to express oneself.
- Democracy guarantees and distributes means for peaceful and constructive debates.
- Democracy also guarantees respect for minorities.
- Respect for human rights.
- Politika agado por Esperanto
- "Des antiradars aux espérantistes; EUROPÉENNES La pléthore des petites listes." Le Figaro. By Saïd Mahrane. 12 juin 2004
- "Un nombre record de 168 listes dans les 8 circonscriptions électorales" Le Monde, 01 juin 2004, France
- "Européennes : une campagne ouvertedans l'indifférence" Les Échos n° 19169 du 01 Juin 2004 • page 4
- "Cinq minutes de conjugaison pour parler l'européen" Les Échos n° 19175 du 09 Juin 2004 • page D.
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