Euro Purge Begins: AfD And Tory MEPs Call On Syed Kamall to Resign Over Brexit Support

Syed Kamall

The most senior Tory Member of the European Parliament (MEP), Syed Kamall, has come under fire from fellow MEPs demanding that he relinquish his post after coming out for the Leave campaign in the European Union (EU) referendum.

In a move that was seen as a major blow to Prime Minister David Cameron’s Remain campaign, former business consultant Sayed Kamall last week announced he backs Brexit, saying “this opportunity may never come again”. That move has now prompted MEPs from Britain and elsewhere to call for Mr. Kamall to resign as leader of the European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) group in the European Parliament.

During the recent EU renegotiation identified Mr. Kamall as having a key role as “an informal spokesman for the British government in Brussels” who talked often with Prime Minister Cameron and Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne. Now, however, fellow ECR MEPs have reacted angrily at his rejection of the EU and are calling on him to resign as their leader.

Charles Tannock MEP, a fellow British Conservative, has questioned his legitimacy in the role reports, saying:

“I believe his position will be problematic as president of the ECR group because all the other ECR national delegations would be very concerned by a Brexit outcome and none support their own countries leaving the EU.

“It will also be a problem in that he will now not be taken seriously by the other political group leaders in the European Parliament, thus weakening his hand to promote our agenda.”

Mr. Tannock added that in the event of a Remain victory in the June referendum, Conservative MEPs will need strong leadership to see Prime Minister Cameron’s reforms are passed in the European Parliament without amendment or delay — a situation which Leave campaigners have warned about already.

Beatrix von Storch, for the time being a fellow MEP in the ECR, represents the anti-mass migration Alternative for Germany party in Brussels. She also tweeted her opposition to Mr. Kamall’s position.

Although the pro-Remain Conservative delegation leader, Ashley Fox MEP, has publicly declared his support for Mr. Kamall, he is reportedly positioning himself to take over from him.

Other pro-EU MEPs from outside the ECR have also been encouraging those wanting Mr. Kamall to go. British Liberal MEP Catherine Bearder said:

“It is difficult to see how Syed Kamall can credibly stay on as group leader. His group are called the Conservatives and Reformists, not the Conservatives and Brexiteers.”

Nevertheless, Mr. Kamall retains supporters in resisting his fellow MEPs urge to purge.

His colleague in Westminster, eurosceptic Member of Parliament (MP) James Cleverly, said: “Calls for him to stand down, by a few MEPs, are ridiculous and he should ignore them.”

Mr. Kamall has also had support tweeted by prominent Leave campaigner Dr. Liam Fox MP:

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