Statement on Removal of Claude Moraes as Rapporteur for the Regulation on Visa-Exemption for UK citizens after Brexit

I am deeply disappointed with the decision to remove the Chairman of the LIBE Committee as Rapporteur for the regulation on Visa Exemptions, specifically for UK nationals in the event of a no-deal Brexit.

I disassociate myself with this process and consider it scandalous that such a decision has been taken purely on the basis of the nationality and therefore the assumed bias of the rapporteur. 

To be clear, the Rapporteur represented entirely fairly the European Parliament’s position on this file. He was willing to move towards the Councii position in a number of areas, including on the question of how Gibraltarian citizens would be treated under the regulation.

By forcing the removal of its rapporteur, who was faithfully representing the Parliament’s position, the European Parliament has shot itself in the foot.

Furthermore, if the Parliament then abandons its position, which was adopted unanimously in the LIBE Committee (53-0-0), and accepts the Council’s entirely unhelpful position on Gibraltar, which is unrelated to the purpose of the regulation, it will then have shot itself in the head.

This will imply that the Parliament is not needed to draft legislation, that it could be abolished, and that the Council should alone decide on EU legislation.

I highlighted these issues in a letter to COREPER 50 Ambassadors on 15 March. The letter is attached for your perusal.

Petr Jezek

Member of the European Parliament

Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe Hlas (Voice/Voix) Movement