The EU has done “too little” to deal with illegal immigration, admits European Parliament president Roberta Metsola.
The EU’s failure on core issues like immigration has made support for it fall for the first time since the fall of the Berlin Wall, she says.
Migration “is perhaps the most emotive issue we have to deal with and certainly the most exploited by politicians seeking an easy target,” Metsola adds.
“That’s why Europe has to get it right,” says the Maltese MEP.
Metsola spoke Thursday to Germany’s Konrad Adenauer Foundation, a think tank close to the governing Christian Democratic Union.
German domestic intelligence classified the AfD’s Saxony-Anhalt branch as an extremist group on Tuesday, which an AfD MEP called a cynical ploy to hurt the party’s reputation. https://t.co/CFETWBPnL9
— Brussels Signal (@brusselssignal) November 8, 2023
She believes the EU is now making overdue progress on the issue of migration, but being slow to offer “answers on inflation, on migration, on security” has fuelled the rise of parties like Germany’s populist Alternative für Deutschland.
Her own centre-right politics can often look “boringly grey”, she says, while more extreme ideologies paint issues in black and white.
Behind the European Union’s grey politics lies a culture of compromise and stability, she argues.
For critics, this claim may seem less convincing as the EU adopts what they see as pro-censorship measures.
The EU’s Digital Services Act (DSA), for opponents, dampens on free speech under its guise of banning “illegal” content and “disinformation” from major social media sites.
Metsola, though, took time to champion the DSA, describing the act as one of the EU’s successes.
in her view, the law will help “ensure that innovation can thrive, while also ensuring proper regulation”, she says.
Efforts to censor the internet in Europe must be left to the European Union and its Digital Services Act, the European Commission has told France. https://t.co/C6RmyA6Swa
— Brussels Signal (@brusselssignal) August 3, 2023