President Iohannis wants bridges of culture, freedom and tolerance between Europeans

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Romania's President Klaus Iohannis voiced his hope on Saturday in Sibiu, that "borders of all sorts, which can lift walls between Europeans, will be replaced by bridges of culture, freedom and tolerance."

Klaus Iohannis believes that the partnership between Sbiu and Luxembourg is a benchmark in Europe, cities that, although were European Capital of Culture 10 years ago, continue to collaborate and have successful common projects.

"The Partnership between Sibiu and Luxembourg remains a benchmark for everything that means European spirit. Our common experience from 2007 reveals that, beyond any political, social, economic and security commitment, Europe has been and will remain a space of democratic values, that are amplified by intercultural dialogue. I gladly remember the fact that in 2007, Sibiu's motto was 'City of Culture', city of cultures, while the Luxembourg and the Grand Region's motto was beyond borders. I wanted to evoke them because their meaning is still valid today, not just for the residents of our cities, but for increasingly more Europeans," Iohannis stated in the speech delivered within a ceremony attended by Prime Minister of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg Xavier Bettel.

The former mayor of Sibiu in 2007, when the city in the center of Romania and Luxembourg were European Capitals of Culture, and currently the President of Romania says that the two cities through their mutual cultural programme are "successful examples of European Capitals of Culture."

Klaus Iohannis wanted PM of Luxembourg Xavier Bettel to attend on Saturday the celebration of 10 years of European Capital of Culture and the 10th anniversary since Romania has been a member state of the European Union, which is a "reason of joy," as the President said.

On the occasion, Klaus Iohannis and PM of Luxembourg Xavier Bettel decorated the theaters directors of the two cities, namely Sibiu and Luxembourg, thanking them for their contribution to the success of the European Capital of Culture programme.

Director General of "Radu Stanca" Theater in Sibiu Constantin Chiriac and Director General of the Municipal Theater in Esch-sur-Alzette Charles Muller, revealed how important the collaboration between the two cities is for the common cultural success.

"This ceremony has a unique character. We are in a 'sui-generis' 'staging': just a few meters from us is the International Theater Festival in Sibiu, the most suited framework for today's ceremony, it carries out, widely, its positive energies. You, Mr Muller and Chiriac, Directors of theaters in Esch-sur-Alzette and Sibiu, you have build in ten years a solid bridge between the European Capitals of Culture of 2007. (...) Precisely thy beautiful artistic collaboration is celebrated through the distinctions you have received today. It exceeds the simple professional relation between two theaters. Through each joint performance and through the participation of Romanian and Luxembourgian directors, set designers and actors in the performances of the "Radu Stanca" National Theater and the Theater in Esch, you are the living example of how culture builds Europe," Klaus Iohannis said.

Sibiu is linked to Luxembourg not only by a decade of collaboration in the culture area, but also by eight centuries of history, because 800 years ago those who left Luxembourg founded the medieval Hermannstadt, the German name of Sibiu city.

The delegation's schedule includes a round table with "Sibiu — European destination for investment, culture and tourism" theme, the two officials will then watch the "Sefele" ("The Female Bosses") at the "Radu Stanca" National Theater, afterwards they will visit the Brukenthal Museum and also the historical center of Sibiu. At the same time, the two officials will participate in the opening of the Honorary Consulate of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg in Sibiu. AGERPRES (RO — author: Isabela Paulescu, editor: Cristina Tatu; EN — editor: Rodica Ionita)

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