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Astronaut Matthias Maurer and Prof Nicolas Peter celebrating the 70th Anniversary of the European Parliament

A historic and vibrant gathering – organized by the European Collectivity of Alsace and supported by the European Space Agency and International Space University’s Prof Nicolas Peter – took place on Tuesday 30th May 2023 at the European Parliament in Strasbourg, France where more than 1000 young singers from the 27 European countries celebrated in music the 70th anniversary of the European Parliament.

This momentous occasion, set under the patronage of Ms. Roberta Metsola, President of the European Parliament, brought together distinguished guests, including amongst others:

  • the president of the European Collectivity of Alsace, Mr. Frederic Bierry,
  • the vice president of the GrandEst Region Ms Irene Weiss,
  • the mayor of the Eurometropolis of Strasbourg, Ms. Jeanne Barseghian,
  • a member of the European Parliament, Mr. Raphael Schellenberger
  • European Space Agency and International Space University’s Professor of the Practice in Space Policy and International Affairs Nicolas Peter

The highlight of the event was most definitely the interaction between another guest of honor – the ESA astronaut Matthias Maurer – and the 1200 and so children who took part in a Q&A session of 45 minutes in the hemicycle of the European Parliament. When asked what the most beautiful thing was that he saw from space, Matthias Maurer answered without hesitation: “The planet Earth”! Before re-iterating how important it is to preserve it.

Those celebrations follow another recent giant leap – the adoption by the European Parliament of IRIS2, Europe’s new infrastructure for resilience, interconnection, and security by satellites – the new flagship program of the European space strategy.


Picture from left to right: Matthias Maurer, Nicolas Peter, Frederic Bierry