V4 mayors sign “Free Cities Pact” to combat populism, promote transparency, tackle climate crisis

Prague mayor Zdeněk Hřib (Pirates) and his counterparts from the other Visegrad Four capitals – Bratislava, Warsaw and Budapest – have signed a “Free Cities Pact” pledging cooperation on issues including immigration, climate change and the rule of law.

The V4 mayors agreed to create the pact on the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, through which they have pledged to work together in defence of a pro-EU urban electorate standing against socially conservative national governments.

In a joint statement, they expressed concern over the rise of populist governments in central Europe that have sought to “exploit societal discontent for personal and political gain, without providing real answers.”

The V4 mayors said such troubling trends “must be reversed through grassroots democracy and smart, inclusive governance”.

Author: Brian Kenety