Published: Wed, 17 June 2020
The five Fine Gael MEPs have called on the EU to clearly and unequivocally condemn all forms of racism in the EU and around the world, ahead of a debate at the European Parliament today (Wednesday, June 17).
Seán Kelly, Mairead McGuinness, Deirdre Clune, Frances Fitzgerald and Maria Walsh will be voting in favour of a Resolution on the Anti-racism protests following the death of George Floyd which denounces racism at home and abroad.
The leader of Fine Gael in the European Parliament, Seán Kelly, said the MEPs were appalled by the death of George Floyd and the circumstances surrounding his death and seriously concerned by the heavy-handed approach taken by police in some cases against those taking part in anti-racism protests.
“We urge the EU to join us in condemning all forms of racism, discrimination and intolerance. Discrimination is counter to the values and principles upon which the EU is founded. We believe in an inclusive, fair and safe society for all. The EU can and should show global leadership in this respect”, Mr Kelly said.
The MEPs reiterated their message in a joint letter to the EU’s High Representative on Foreign Affairs last week, calling on Josep Borrell to publicly condemn the excessive use of force towards citizens in the US recently. They further called for increased efforts at EU level to identify occurrences of racism and xenophobia in the European Union and put in place the appropriate tools to eliminate them. They also asked for an investigation into whether any EU arms exports were used against civilians and suspend these exports if this is the case.
“It is vitally important that we avoid considering this to be an ‘American problem’. We must be vigilant against racism and racial inequality in all its forms, look hard at our own societies, listen to those speaking out about their own experiences, and tackle the scourge of racism head-on. We have countless examples of racism here in the European Union, be it in the form of hate-speech, discrimination based on skin colour, or even acts of violence. Racism in every form is unacceptable and must be eliminated from our society”, they wrote.