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The Maastricht Diplomat

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[The New York Times] Bella Ciao

The committee of the European Coal and Steel Community was fiercely negotiating this afternoon. A variety of topics were discussed, but three points kept coming back in the discussion.

First of all, many countries stressed the need for social stability and safe working conditions. Especially the two delegates of Italy were very much pushing forward these topics. The delegate of the Italian Communist Party stressed the containment of working hours and was even singing the song “Bella Ciao”, which is about the harsh working conditions of Italian miners, to substantiate her claims.

Secondly, multiple delegates, one of which was the German CDU delegate, saw the ECSC as a tool to prevent war. There was a common agreement to prevent a repetition of the horrible events of the Second World War.

Thirdly, while stressing the need for good social policy, the economic opportunities and benefits of ECSC were widely acknowledged as well. For example, the German CDU delegate stressed the need to expand the ECSC to particularly include oil, which was seen as a valuable future resource.

Overall, this was an interesting debate with a lot of different points of views. We are keeping you up to date on any future developments.

- Mick Jagger, chief diplomatic correspondent in Europe


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