Summit to test EU leaders’ commitment to democratic standards

EU leaders are gathering in Brussels for a two-day summit to deal with some of the most important issues affecting peoples’ lives in Europe, with significant implications for the future of the EU.

Speaking ahead of the meeting, Co-Presidents of the Left in the European Parliament Manon Aubry and Martin Schirdewan had the following comments on the key points on the leaders’ agenda.

“The agreement found between the German Council presidency, Hungary and Poland goes against what has been firmly demanded by the European Parliament,” says Manon Aubry on the recent rule of law deal.

“The suggested adjustments to the Rule of Law mechanism will limit its potential implementation and will have only one outcome: give time to Viktor Orbán and protect him from any financial sanctions for months and maybe even years. In the meantime, human rights and fundamental freedoms will be irreversibly damaged.”

Addressing the latest developments in the Brexit talks, Martin Schirdewan says that “the Council must send a clear signal to Boris Johnson: no deal can be done at the expense of labour and environmental standards. Anyone who wants fair trade must also act and negotiate fairly.”

“The heads of state and governments must understand that the European Parliament will not accept a fait accompli from the Brexit negotiations. A provisional application of an agreement without a thorough parliamentary review is, and will remain, objectionable,” he added.

Provocations by the Turkish government in the Eastern Mediterranean are also on the Summit agenda and Schirdewan had this to say:

“These days, European solidarity also means showing Turkey clear boundaries. So far, the German Council presidency has not found clear language to deal with the autocrat Erdoğan, despite ongoing violations by Turkey, including its illegal drilling in the Mediterranean Sea and its threats against Greece and Cyprus. An immediate end to all arms exports to Turkey is overdue.”

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