Coronavirus crisis exposes Brussels weakness after EU response ridiculed as ‘bonkers’

The coronavirus outbreak has exposed the myth of EU unity, according to former MEP Lance Forman. The Brexiteer said that there was no unity left in Europe, as all member-states take unilateral decisions to combat the pandemic. Mr Forman made his remarks to talkRADIO’s Mike Graham, who ridiculed the European bloc since its purpose is to “coordinate for this type of disaster”.

Countries like the Czech Republic have shut down their borders to 13 “risk countries” in a bid to stem the spread of COVID-19.

Others like Italy have imposed nationwide lockdown, with movement limited to urgent medical or professional need.

All shops in Italy are now closed, except for pharmacies and those stocking food.

Mr Forman told talkRADIO: “There is no coordination at all in Europe. Every country is handling it in a totally different way.”

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Graham added: “The EU is supposed to be in charge of coordination for this type of disaster. It can’t even come up with a unified response for airlines.”

The former Brexit Party MEP said: “The problem is that the EU is such a lumbering giant and decision making takes forever.

“When you have a crisis that needs immediate action, nobody knows what to do.”

The talkRADIO broadcaster mocked the EU’s priorities, pointing out that yesterday the European Court of Justice decided to fine Italy 7.9bn euros for “subsidising the Sardinian hotel sector” – amid the coronavirus crisis.

Mr Forman labelled this bizarre behaviour from Brussels as “bonkers”.

The splits within the EU have seen the Italian government accuse the EU and its member states of being slow in coming to the country’s aid.

Italy’s ambassador to the EU complained of a lack of solidarity among member states.


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Maurizio Massari said Brussels needed to “go beyond engagement and consultations” and devise “emergency actions that are quick, concrete and effective”.

European Central Bank boss Christine Lagarde also came under fire after effectively telling governments across the eurozone they are widely responsible for protecting their economies from a potential recession.

Enrico Franceschini, the foreign correspondent for the Italian newspaper La Repubblica, warned that Brussels response reignited fears of a resurgence of demands for Italexit.

Speaking to Sky News, Mr Franceschini said: “Italy expects more of Europe at this time.

“Decisions have to show that we are in this all together otherwise Italians are warning we might have again people pushing for Italexit after Brexit.”

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