S&D Group’s news on the European Parliament’s Plenary session in Strasbourg – 16 to 19 September 2019

The UK’s withdrawal from the EU
Wed 18/09

The European Parliament will debate Brexit next week and update our position in light of the worrying signals being sent by Boris Johnson and his government on a damaging no-deal outcome. Even if we regret Brexit, our Group has worked in a responsible way to mitigate its worst consequences and ensure that the UK leaves the EU in an orderly way. Our priorities remain ensuring that the rights of EU citizens are guaranteed in all circumstances and protecting the peace process in Northern Ireland. We are also deeply concerned by the difficulty EU citizens, some of whom have lived in the UK for decades, have had in receiving settled status from UK authorities. This combined with confusing and contradictory statements from the UK Home Office on ending freedom of movement after October 31st are causing stress and uncertainty for millions of people who have chosen to build their lives in the UK. People should not pay the price for, so our Group supports ring-fencing citizens’ rights whatever happens. We support an extension of Article 50, if needed, to avoid a catastrophic no deal scenario.

Pedro Silva Pereira, Vice-President of the European Parliament and S&D interim Member of the Brexit Steering Group

Press officers : Tim ALLAN & Solange HELIN-VILLES

Foreign electoral interference and disinformation in national and European democratic processes
THU 19/09

The European Parliament needs to urgently tackle the problem of third countries trying to destabilize the EU by interfering in elections. The most recent example of outside interference was the plan, revealed by the media in July, for Russian sources to fund the political party of Italy’s Salvini. But this is only the latest case and goes much further than Russia and Italy. That is why I am pleased that the S&D managed to gain widespread political support for this important topic to be on the agenda. We must come up with serious proposals on how to prevent third parties from undermining our European and national democratic systems by, inter alia, illicit funding, spreading propaganda and engaging in massive digital interference in elections. To be able to tackle this problem more effectively, we will propose establishing a special Parliamentary committee to deal with this top priority issue.

Kati Piri, Vice-President of the S&D Group and Member of the Committee on Foreign Affairs

Press officer : Inga CZERNY-GRIMM

Council and Commission statements on State of implementation of anti-money laundering legislation
WED 18/09

Over the past few years, several scandals have shown that despite the reforms we have approved, the European framework for fighting money laundering and financing terrorism is still very fragmented in the European Union. This is especially the case for national enforcement and supervision.

The legislation in place is clearly insufficient to prevent and tackle criminal activity, that is increasingly complex and cross-border. 

I therefore support moving to legislation that goes beyond minimum standards. We need to stand ready to work on further reforms with a view to seamless cooperation in enforcement and centralised supervision of Anti-Money Laundering (AML) rules in the EU.

S&D ECON Coordinator, Jonás Fernández

Press officer : Silvia PELZ

Presentation by the Council of its position on the draft general budget – 2020 financial year
WED 18/09

Once again the Council has put forward unacceptable budgetary cuts that go against Europe’s needs. Furthermore this is not in line with Ursula von der Leyen’s commitments for this mandate.

Eider Gardiazabal Rubial, Coordinator, Committee on Budgets

Press officer : Dana CHIRU