Freedom of expression threatened in the European Parliament
A statement by Manon Aubry, GUE/NGL Co-President:
“The President of the European Parliament has just reprimanded me for having merely suggested, in a video addressed to environmental activists, that they peacefully occupy Parliament’s premises in order to call on MEPs to take political action on the climate crisis.
“Using my right of response, I reminded him that no occupation took place, nor was there any obstruction to parliamentary business whatsoever and that, in a democracy, dialogue with civil society is our duty, not an obstacle to Parliament’s work.
“Mr. Sassoli rode roughshod over my remarks and decided to punish me by grossly misinterpreting the rules of procedure. This political decision creates a dangerous precedent as it threatens MEPs’ freedom of speech.
“I will not be cowed by any attempts to intimidate me with tactics from a bygone era. At a time when civil society is asking us to open our eyes to the climate and social emergencies, Parliament must be open to it rather than widen the gap between people and politics.”
- La France Insoumise