5 questions with... Cecilia Malmström
Abba, refugees and an inspiring life.
Cecilia Malmström | Photo credit: European Commission audiovisual
1. Which person you have worked with has most inspired you in your career, and how?
I have been fortunate to meet many memorable people throughout my career, but one of the most impressive was Bronisław Geremek - a friend and colleague when we were both MEPs. His life and work was astounding - his father murdered in Auschwitz, his own imprisonment in the fight for democracy in Poland, his passionate struggle for a united Europe... Despite all this he was modest, deeply knowledgeable and never gave up. He was truly a role model and I was proud to work with him in the Parliament.
2. What would you save from your house if it was on fire?
Apart from saving my family and my cat, it would probably be my iPhone.
3. Is there anything you have personally achieved or done that would surprise people?
I sang at a concert together with Abba when I was a kid.
4. What is the most humbling thing you have experienced in your career?
All the visits I made to refugee camps in different parts of the world, mainly as Commissioner for home affairs. To hear these people’s stories - what they have run from and what their dreams are - surely makes you humble when you look at your own life.
5. What do you do in your free time to relax and unwind?
I don’t have much free time, but I do read a lot of books. Most recently, I finished the Patrick Melrose novels by Edward St Aubyn.
The Dutch town of Leeuwarden and Valletta in Malta will hold the title of European capital of culture for one year from 1 January.
Poorly educated are struggling to sustain healthy lifestyles, argues Jean-Michel Borys.
Was the revision of the EU firearms directive worth the effort, asks Tomasz W. Stępień
Recent eastern partnership summit tainted by ambiguity over EU's Caspian partner, argues Azerbaijani parliament member Azay Guliyev.