The European Policy Research Institute has organized the discussion “European elections in 2019: populism and changing perceptions” in the framework of LAMPA festival, which took place in Cēsis on Friday 28 June, 2019. This discussion was supported by the Norwegian grant.
Moderator of the discussion, Prof. Inna Šteinbuka said in her introduction, that the EP election was seen as a threat of rising populism in Europe, which got increasing support in national elections from Italy and France to Hungary and Poland during recent years. Instead the most prominent takeaways from the elections of the European Parliament are fragmentation and polarization.
During the discussion participants tried to understand potential consequences of the EP fragmentation and polarization.
Member of the European Parliament Dr. Roberts Zīle agreed that participation of populists and extreme-rights in the EP has increased. He described their current and future role in the European policy-making.
NATO StratCOM Director, Jānis Sārts stressed that fake news and disinformation are powerful means of radicalization and populisms. He elaborated on how to prevent or at least reduce dissemination of propaganda in the future.
Ambassador, EPPI Senior Researcher Dr. Gints Apals shared his opinion on perceptions about changing EU priorities in the new political reality.
Deputy Director of Latvian International Policy Institute Dr. Kārlis Bukovskis answered to the question “Is populism a real threat to liberal democracy and how do you see EU future challenges?”