The Weimar Triangle: 30 years of cross-border cooperation between Germany, France and Poland

Statue of Goethe and Schiller and the flags of the EU, Germany, France and Poland (l-r) in Weimar

Three decades after the founding of the Weimar Triangle, the three Foreign Ministers are meeting in Weimar for the day., © dpa-Zentralbild

10.09.2021 - Article

On 10 September, Foreign Minister Heiko Maas will meet his counterparts Jean‑Yves Le Drian and Zbigniew Rau in Weimar – the very place where this important Franco-German-Polish forum for cooperation was launched 30 years ago.

Three decades after the founding of the Weimar Triangle, the three Foreign Ministers are meeting in Weimar for the day. The trilateral, cross-border format of the Weimar Triangle not only symbolises how the future of Europe can be shaped together and across borders. At the meetings of the three ministers on 10 September, very specific current foreign and European policy issues will also be discussed, including the situation in Afghanistan and developments in Belarus.

Foreign Minister Maas issued the following statement prior to his departure for Weimar:

30 years ago, the vision behind the Weimar Triangle – that, after centuries of war and enmity, the three major states France, Germany and Poland, would join forces to shape the future of Europe together – seemed utopian. Now it is something that is almost taken for granted.

En route to Weimar, the three ministers will jointly plant a tree of remembrance near the former Gustloff works. This tree is part of the integrative 1000 Buchen (1000 Beeches) memorial site of the organisation Lebenshilfe-Werk. Since 1999, these memorial trees have been planted along the route of the “death marches” from Buchenwald concentration camp to Flossenbürg concentration camp in Bavaria, which took place at the end of the Second World War. The aim here is to keep alive the memory of the death marches and, above all, the thousands of victims they claimed in the public consciousness.

In Weimar itself, a discussion between the three ministers and German, French and Polish students at the Bauhaus University will take place, after which the ministers will hold a press conference together. A joint visit to historical sites in Weimar is likewise on the itinerary.

On 29 August 2021, Minister of State for Europe Michael Roth took part in an event hosted by Land Thuringia to mark the 30th anniversary of the Weimar Triangle. At the event, the tenth Weimar Triangle prize was presented to two German-French-Polish dialogue projects by a high school in Rinteln, Land Lower Saxony. Click here for more Information.

The Weimar Triangle: An important forum also for parliaments and civil societies

In addition to contacts at government level, parliamentary cooperation plays an important role in the Weimar Triangle. A number of committees convene in this trilateral format, alongside the three parliamentary presidiums.

In recent years, moreover, multifaceted exchanges at the level of civil society have become increasingly important – in the form of town twinning arrangements, youth exchanges and cultural Events.


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