Limerick EU candidates oppose second term for Ursula von der Leyen

Limerick Sinn Féin Senator Paul Gavan addressing the Seanad.

A NUMBER of Limerick candidates contesting the upcoming European elections have come out with strong words against a second term for EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen.

Sitting Limerick Senator Paul Gavan, and Sinn Féin candidate in the elections this June, has called on the Irish government and EU candidates to clearly state that they will not support the reappointment of Ursula von der Leyen as European Commission President.

Senator Gavan said that von der Leyen had “damaged the credibility of the European Union” through her “partisan interventions” in support of Israel during the onslaught on Gaza.

“In offering Netanyahu unconditional and unqualified support at a pivotal and escalating point in Israel’s onslaught against the civilian population of Gaza, Ursula von der Leyen provided political cover for the genocidal destruction that has unfolded in front of our eyes,” Senator Gavan said.

“As a neutral state with an independent foreign policy, Ireland can proudly point to our consistency in demanding adherence to international law, international humanitarian law, and the UN charter. By claiming to speak for Europe, Ursula von der Leyen undermined efforts to secure a ceasefire and save countless lives in Gaza.”

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“Competency for foreign policy at a European Union level lies with the European Council at which each member state has a veto. Ursula von der Leyen’s actions were in clear and direct contravention of this reality. She should not be rewarded with a second term in office,” he added.

Similarly, Cian Prendiville, EU candidate for People Before Profit, claims that every effort must be made to halt the re-appointment of Ursula von der Leyen. The Limerick man considers the sitting EU Commission President a danger to world peace and is also calling on the Irish government to oppose her re-appointment.

“Ursula von der Leyen symbolises the militarisation and heartlessness of the EU,” he says.

“She has backed Israel throughout their current genocidal war, even though it has resulted in 29,000 Palestinian deaths. She does not speak for the hundreds of thousands of European citizens who want a ceasefire.

“The Irish government claims to sympathise with the people of Gaza. If so, they should now openly oppose any attempt by Ursula van der Leyen to win a second term. We suspect, however, that they will fail to do so because they are tied into her agenda of militarising the EU,” Mr Prendiville concluded.