Länderberichte

Tories Leave the EPP

“A Regrettable Decision”

Following the decision of the British Conservative Party on Wednesday to leave the European People’s Party (EPP) Director of Konrad Adenauer Stiftung, London Office, Thomas Bernd Stehling, has described this “a regrettable decision” not only for Europe but also for the Conservatives themselves:

“This is a regrettable decision.

It divides and weakens the centre-right parties at a time when they should be strong and united.

It makes opponents and competitors of parties who were friends and partners.

The decision does not reflect the achievements we have made over the last years with regards to common views and values nor does it reflect the common challenges ahead of us.

The world has changed since 2005, and so have Europe and our respective countries.

Stepping out of the strongest and most influential alliance of political parties in Europe at this time does not serve the interests of the Conservative Party and the Government in waiting. It will diminish their influence in Europe and alienates them from their natural allies” so Stehling.

In a seperate statement the chairman of the Conservative Group for Europe, Ian Taylor MP, commented:

“The announcement that the Conservative Party will leave the EPP and attempt to form a new grouping in the European Parliament comes as no surprise. It is disappointing that the decision was regarded as essential. The challenge now is to demonstrate that the creation of a new group is part of a reinvigoration of the Conservative Party’s commitment to the European Union.

“It is vital that our Party maintains its influence by working closely with fellow centre right leaders. This means that we must increase our efforts to strengthen alliances within the European Parliament and European Council.

“CGE will continue to work closely with our allies both within the EPP and with other members of the unidentified new 'European Conservatives' grouping.

“There are a vast number of problems including energy supplies, climate change, security, international tensions and the economy which demand cohesive action within the European Union and its Parliament. We Conservatives need to be part of a strong centre-right alliance if we are to have an impact on policy outcomes at EU level. It is hoped that an effective coalition can be formed for this purpose” Taylor comments.

The British Conservatives are planning to form a new group in the European Parliament ahead of the European parliamentary elections in June. The group is likely to be called “European Conservatives”.

CG