13 March 2012

En forme à Strasbourg

I have spent the day in Strasbourg, speaking at the European Parliament in the morning session that I attended for two hours together with Maros Sefcovic, the Commissioner responsible for interinstitutional relations. I reported to the Members of the European Parliament my views on the last European Council, finally one without the drama that the public became used to see in many European Council meetings throughout the last two years. If you want to watch my speech it is on video below (thanks for my team who sent me the correct link):

I think I was particularly "en forme" in my replies to the interventions of the distinguished MEPs at the end of the debate. You can see that especially the letter that I received from certain heads of state and government has surprised me as many of the measures they propose are in fact blocked by the member states, the same that sent this letter. And sending me a letter that does not even mention once the Europe 2020 strategy, our common European strategy for growth, did show that we still have some way to go in our common approach. Maybe I even let myself go a little too far with certain remarks, yet some things need to said! But see for yourself:

At 13h00, we had our weekly College meeting and in the evening, I participated in the meeting of the EPP group, my political family in the European Parliament. Thanks to Austrian MEP Elisabeth Koestinger there is even a photo of me at this meeting (to my right Joseph Daul, the EPP group chairman and Martin Kamp, EPP group secretary general):

One of the things I have made clear during that meeting was that I strongly condemn the anti-immigration websites in the Netherlands. This kind of discrimination should not take place in our common European Union. Tomorrow, I will meet with the Women's Rights and Gender Equality Committee of the European Parliament. That is it for today, good night to all of you!

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