BRUSSELS, March 1 (UPI) -- A former Czech diplomat has told the European Parliament Europe's defense of human rights and democratic forces in North Africa wasn't loud enough.
EU Commissioner Stefan Fuele apologized for Europe's history of support for dictators in the region and said the EU should be standing with pro-democracy demonstrators, the EUobserver reported Tuesday.
"It is with them, and for them, that we must work today -- not with dictators who are, as we speak, spilling the blood of their own people with utter disregard for human life," Fuele told MEPs.
He said that Europe must support democratic transition in North Africa the same way it supported the revolutions in Eastern Europe in 1989.
"We know that the forces of change that have been unleashed will not produce stable political systems overnight," Fuele said, adding that Europe's long-term common objective should be a "democratic, stable, prosperous and peaceful North Africa."