Qatargate: Metsola waives two MEPs’ immunity after Belgian judicial request

EP President says reforms in coming weeks will overhaul current rules and improve internal systems including those dealing with enforcement.

 

In what was undoubtedly one of her first orders of business of the new year, European Parliament President Roberta Metsola on Monday afternoon launched an urgent procedure for the waiver of immunity of two Members of the European Parliament following a request from the Belgian judicial authorities.

Metsola has asked all services and committees involved to give the procedure priority with a view to having it concluded by 13 February.

The European Parliament said in a statement this afternoon that the first procedural steps have been taken and that Metsola will announce her request in plenary at the first possible opportunity, which will present itself on 16 January. After that, the request will be referred to the EP’s Committee on Legal Affairs (JURI) for a proposal for a decision.

Metsola on Monday promised no impunity whatsoever: “From the very first moment the European Parliament has done everything in its power to assist in investigations and we will continue to make sure that there will be no impunity.

“Those responsible will find this Parliament on the side of the law. Corruption cannot pay and we will do everything to fight it.”

Along such lines, she said she will be setting out her intentions for reforms in the coming weeks. These, she said, will include “an overhaul of the current rules and improving internal systems, including on enforcement.”

According to press reports, the two MEPs in question are Italian Andrea Cozzolino and Belgian Marc Tarabella.

Greek Socialist EP Vice President Eva Kaili had already been removed from her position by a landslide plenary vote of 625 to one of her fellow MEPs over her involvement in Qatargate.

She had been arrested in December and was charged with corruption and money laundering linked to Qatar’s lobbying of the EP. Belgian authorities found €150,000 in cash during a search of her apartment, while another €600,000 was found in a suitcase her father was carrying when leaving a Brussels hotel.

Maltese Prime Minister Robert Abela had last month leapt to Qatar’s defence and criticised Metsola, a Maltese political rival from the Opposition Nationalist Party, for having moved “too quickly” on the scandal.

In the same breath, he also insisted that links between Qatar and Europe, particularly in energy supply, should not be tainted by the allegations. The Shift has reported on Malta’s dealings with Qatar in eight visits in one year, including President George Vella meeting two brothers accused only two months earlier in a British court of financing terrorism in Syria.

Metsola, who described the scandal as an attack on European democracy and the EP’s pluralistic values, said she had turned down an invitation to attend the World Cup, as well as a Qatari request to address the EP because of her “concerns” about the country.

                           
                           
                               
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saviour mamo
saviour mamo
28 days ago

Roberta Metsola means business and she walks the talk in the fight against corruption. May our local politicians emulate her actions.

J.s
J.s
27 days ago

The EP parliament president should also be held accountable. Throwing everyone under the bus to save one’s face and avoid shouldering responsibility clearly shows that there were flaws which went unnoticed or maybe no one took action until it all exploded in their faces.

Fake it till you make it game is on!!!

Last edited 27 days ago by J.s
viv
viv
27 days ago
Reply to  J.s

Yes, it is a fact – cognitive dissonance is an important element in the structure of omertà. Thanks for pointing that out.

J.S
J.S
26 days ago
Reply to  viv

What is right is right and what is wrong is wrong.

viv
viv
25 days ago
Reply to  J.S

Oh excuse me – I thought I was communicating with an adult! Be good at school this term!

Jac.Sm
Jac.Sm
27 days ago

Thinking about her statements of funding and sending weapons to “assist in this war” it means that she has blood on her hands for every innocent life that has been lost and that will be lost tonight , tomorrow and so on. She has instigated more fighting rather then peace talks and the worst thing of all is that she dragged all of us into this.

Whatever for ? because she is hungry for power , status and trying to prove that she is right. Where is the effort for peace talks, will our families and children be safe in the future or should we install anti missile systems on our shores because Metsola decided to go to war!!!!!

makjavel
makjavel
27 days ago
Reply to  Jac.Sm

Putin decided to attack its neighbor and is simply attacking residential areas .
Putin is a war criminal and those who support him are lackeys.

J.S
J.S
26 days ago
Reply to  makjavel

Someone has decided on your behalf that your country is now part of this war. Are you ready to face any consequences ? Lackeys are those who are ready to pay for other people’s mistakes.
There will be a price to pay!!!!!

Last edited 26 days ago by J.S
G. Borg
G. Borg
27 days ago
Reply to  Jac.Sm

What the hell are you talking about ? Putin invaded Ukraine, not vice versa. Metsola is helping the country which is being attacked with thousands of victims, including children, who until a year ago were living a peaceful, normal life.

J.S
J.S
26 days ago
Reply to  G. Borg

Very Simple i have not voted to go to war with anyone and yet we are all part of this war now!!!!

Instead peace should have been the most important topic of the day.

Last edited 26 days ago by J.S
Godfrey Leone Ganado
Godfrey Leone Ganado
26 days ago
Reply to  J.S

What are you yourself doing for this peace?
What is our government doing by issuing passports to Russian oligarchs close to Putin to roam in the EU via Schengen to launder their illicit earnings on military equipment, and to spy for Putin for his satanic military ambition of starting a third world war and taking over everywhere. Obviously, he does not need to take Malta over, because we are already one of his top State prostitutes, thanks to Joseph Muscat and Robert Abela with the approval of their PL MP’s, MEP’s and ‘prostitute’ business and professional associates.

Last edited 26 days ago by Godfrey Leone Ganado
J.S
J.S
26 days ago

If you wish to go to war.
Good luck!!!

Dave Green
Dave Green
27 days ago

In December, the EU Ombudsman Emilly OReilly called for an urgent overhaul of the EU in this massive scandal at the European Parliament.
O
Reilly said the revelations will make it more difficult for the EU to deal with countries like Poland and Hungary over rule-of-law issues, calling it a “gift” to people with an “anti-EU agenda”.

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