Verhofstadt: EU President’s Vaccine ‘Fiasco’ Has ‘Ruined Ties with the UK’

BELGA PHOTO NICOLAS MAETERLINCK (Photo credit should read NICOLAS MAETERLINCK/AFP via Getty Images)
NICOLAS MAETERLINCK/AFP via Getty Images

European Union parliamentarian Guy Verhofstadt has admitted that the bloc’s vaccine rollout has been “a fiasco”, and that Ursula von der Leyen’s leadership has potentially “ruined” relations with the United Kingdom.

In a video entitled: “the inconvenient truth behind the vaccination fiasco of the EU”, Verhofstadt took aim at European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen for potentially ruining diplomatic ties with the UK. 

“The use of the Article 16 of the Northern Ireland protocol has been a diplomatic disaster that destroyed in a few seconds the seriousness of the negotiations with the UK conducted by Michel Barnier for more than three years,” he said.

Verhofstadt went on to malign von der Leyen’s obfuscation of blame in the failed vaccine rollout, saying that the EU was “ill-conceived” in its negotiations with pharmaceutical companies.

“I think the measures taken by the Commission are hugely symbolic, insufficient and counterproductive,” he added.

The Eurocrat went on to say that Europe has fallen “short of its potential… a fiasco I call it, and a fiasco it is”, blaming the leadership of the European Commission for the “dramatically” low number of vaccines given throughout the bloc.

“If you believe in Europe, if you love Europe, it’s your duty to be the most vocal critic especially when Europe falls short of its potential and our expectations. That’s exactly what’s happening now with the vaccinations,” the MEP said.

“Europe is no more, no less than the world leader in vaccine production today. More than 75 per cent of vaccines worldwide are produced in Europe. Nevertheless, there is a crucial lack of supply,” he Verhofstadt noted but admitted that Brexit Britain, the United States, Canada, and Israel are not facing similar shortages.

Last week, Breitbart London reported that the United Kingdom — which was branded as “stupid” for leaving the EU and its attendant ‘benefits’ like membership of the European Medicines Agency by Mr Verhofstadt — has vaccinated more people than the entire European Union in absolute terms, despite having less than one-sixth of the population to vaccinate.

The typically globalist-minded politician was seemingly annoyed that vaccines produced in Europe would be shipped to other countries, calling upon the EU to “radically” change its strategy and re-negotiate contracts with the pharmaceutical firms to be more similar to those negotiated by the newly independent Britain.

Mr Verhofstadt then called for the EU to reduce its onerous regulatory requirements in order to fast track the approval of future vaccines.

The Belgian MEP did, however, return to a more classically Eurocrat position, in calling for the establishment of a new ‘Health Union’ bureaucracy, which he said would be necessary to “match the United States” in the development of new medicines and treatments.

He concluded by pronouncing that the European Union was not the problem, but rather “the basis for the solution.”

While Mr Verhofstadt touted the possibilities for the future of the EU, Brexit leader Nigel Farage has warned that the vaccine fiasco will mark the end of the European Union.

Farage noted that the unelected politicians in the European Commission, such as von der Leyen, are often people who have “failed” in domestic politics.

“They’re the people who make the big decisions that affect the lives of hundreds of millions of people. You can’t vote for them, and you can’t sack them. You can’t change the decisions that they make,” Farage said.

“I genuinely think that on something as important as this [the pandemic], the magnitude of this, I really believe this is the beginning of the end of the European Union as we know it,” Mr Farage predicted.

Follow Kurt Zindulka on Twitter here @KurtZindulka

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