Irish lawmaker Clare Daly says Ursula von der Leyen bears responsibility for Israel’s actions in Gaza
Irish MEP Clare Daly has called European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen “Frau Genocide” over the EU’s stance on Israel’s military operation in Gaza. She went on to claim that contrary to its professed adherence to democracy, the bloc tramples on the will of the people when it runs counter to its own agenda.
Daly, a left-wing politician representing Ireland’s Independents 4 Change political party, said from the European Parliament podium on Sunday that von der Leyen was “elevated to power without a single vote from the citizens.” She went on to accuse the EU Commission president of “swooping in and overriding the foreign policies of elected governments” in recent months, while cheerleading a “brutal apartheid regime that she calls a ‘vibrant democracy.’”
The lawmaker concluded: “With defenders of democracy like that, I think I speak for many, many citizens of Europe, when I say: ‘Nein, danke! No, thanks, Frau Genocide!’”
And now a “Defence of Democracy Package” from a Commission led by a figure no member of the public ever voted for, who’s spent the last 3 months swooping in & speaking over the foreign policies of elected governments, all to cheerlead for a genocidal apartheid regime. Nein danke. pic.twitter.com/FRkgLj6tew
— Clare Daly (@ClareDalyMEP) December 24, 2023
Earlier, Spanish Social Rights Minister Ione Belarra accused Brussels of inaction in the face of what she called “genocide” in Gaza. Media reports also indicate that hundreds of EU staffers slammed von der Leyen for unconditionally supporting Israel.
In a speech marking the 75th anniversary of Israel’s founding in late April, von der Leyen praised the country as a “vibrant democracy in the heart of the Middle East.”
Following the deadly incursion by Hamas on October 7, Israel launched a massive military operation against the Palestinian Islamist group based in Gaza. Soon after the hostilities broke out, von der Leyen had the Israeli flag projected onto the European Commission building in Brussels as a gesture of solidarity. She reiterated her support when meeting with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
Also in October, the Irish Times reported that at least 842 EU staffers had signed a letter denouncing the commission’s stance on Israel. The document reportedly accused von der Leyen of giving a “free hand to the acceleration and legitimacy of a war crime in the Gaza Strip.”
According to the Palestinian health authorities, at least 20,000 people have been killed in Gaza since early October, more than half of them children and women. The Hamas raid, which set the spiral of violence in motion, claimed 1,200 lives. The militants attacked, among other places, an open-air music festival, gunning down and abducting participants. The total number of people, both Israeli and foreign nationals, that the radicals took hostage that day was originally around 240, with dozens released since as part of multiple swaps with Israel.
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