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Washington, D.C., December 27, 1976.


Chairman, Committee on International Relations, House of Representatives, Washington, D.C.

DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN: We are submitting for consideration by the Committee on International Relations a report on the meetings held in Washington on September 21-23, 1976, by members of the committee, and other Members of the House with an official delegation of the European Parliament.

We hope that the report will be useful to the committee in its consideration of legislation relating to U.S. relations with Europe.

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The 10th meeting of delegations from the European Parliament and from the Congress, recorded in this report, is significant for two reasons: the achievement, in the American bicentennial year, of 5 years of these meetings, an occasion marked by the presence of the President of the European Parliament, Mr. Georges Spénale, as head of the European delegation; and, the commitment by the two delegations to concentrate their efforts in future meetings on democratic development and the protection of human rights.

Each of these aspects of the September meetings deserves comment. When in January 1972 an American delegation arrived in Luxembourg, seat of the European Parliament, for the first meeting, neither American nor European participants could foretell the course of their relations. The European Parliament, at that time, represented the aspiration of the Community for political unity but with few of the attributes of a real European parliament. The Congressmen, while more confident of their roles within the American Government, were uncertain about the need for ties with the new European institution or the proper form for those ties.

From the hesitation and uncertainty of that first meeting, our mutual interests in closer ties have been both broadened by events of the past 5 years which have spurred both legislatures and made more specific through the diverse topics our delegations have studied together. The movement toward political unity in Europe has naturally enhanced the role of the Parliament, whose direct elections in 1978 are now the principal focus of the Community's political development. The 1972-76 period in the United States has seen an emphasis on congressional actions in both foreign and domestic affairs.

As the respective roles of the Parliament and the Congress grew in these 5 years, our need for organized discussions grew also. From the casual encounters in Luxembourg, we have progressed through 10 meetings to consider in detail the entire range of economic and political matters which constitute American-European relations. We have considered not only trade matters, with their obvious importance, but also the role of multinational enterprises, most of which originate in the 10 countries our legislators represent. We have studied not only our own economic and political ties but those which bind us to the rest of the world, including our responsibilities for development assistance. We have discussed our respective ties to the eastern European countries, including the Soviet Union. We have not avoided the delicate questions of U.S. military forces in Europe, or of political developments in southern Europe.



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