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Speech from Matteo Biffoni, Mayor of the Municipality of Prato

 Twinning between European Municipalities is an important opportunity to share experiences and knowledge different cultures, a recognition of shared values ​​and a story that often intertwines between different countries. The twinning of peace between Prato and Ebensee is an important example of this, and much more, is a pact of significant friendship!

As mayor of Prato Municipality, I am proud to celebrate the end of September together with the thirtieth anniversary of this extraordinary union between Prato and Ebensee communities. At the end of the 1980s, our city was the first in Europe to make a covenant of this importance, born of the most dramatic pages of our history but with confidence in a peaceful and freedom Europe. Twinning Prato / Ebensee is based on one of the greatest tragedies of the Twentieth Century: the reality of Nazi concentration and extermination camps, a tragedy that caused a deep wound in our civilization, which still continues today.
The twin cities of Prato, a town that has suffered the horrors of deportation, and Ebensee, on whose soil was one of the most terrible Nazi lagers, was strongly desired by some survivors such as Roberto Castellani and Dorval Vannini that we all thank very much for this. They wanted to open us new horizons, often difficult but necessary to show us the way of friendship, mutual understanding, and common safeguard of values, that are still at the base of our democracy and which will have to remain in future.

The Prato - Ebensee twinning Association, which has existed since 1997, and now receives a new life through the participation of new young members that will be the guardians of this important union for the future, giving voice and continuity to those who wanted it and unfortunately are no longer among us.


Matteo Biffoni, Mayor of Municipality of Prato

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