Resigned because of “Qatargate”. MEP Maria Arena President of the Subcommittee of the European Parliament – News

Arena was not prosecuted by a Belgian judge because of the case, but his name was constantly mentioned by the media because of his association with the ex-Italian MEP and non-governmental organization (NGO) founder, the former head of the corruption program. The fight against impunity, Pier Antonio Panzeri, previously chaired the same European Parliament (EP) subcommittee.

“The Belgian authorities have not asked me to lift my parliamentary immunity; have not searched my office or my home, and I have not been implicated in any way by justice,” Maria insisted in a statement again today in her defense.

Unlike his party colleague, Belgian Socialist MEP Marc Darabella, who is under investigation, Arena is not subject to any request to suspend parliamentary immunity, which the EP’s president, Roberta Metzola, has already announced. The march was held at a plenary session in Strasbourg next week.

The EP subcommittee on human rights appears to be at the center of an alleged bribery case involving countries such as Qatar, Morocco and Mauritania that interfered with the body’s decisions, according to information from a judicial inquiry sent to the press in the meantime.

In the investigation, dubbed “Qatargate” by Belgian authorities, four people have so far been indicted on preliminary charges of corruption, money laundering and participation in a criminal organization, and three of them have close ties to the gang.

In this, Pier António Panzeri, in addition to his adviser Francesco Giorgi, worked for one of the current members of the Subcommittee; and Giorgi’s friend Eva Kyli, an MEP from the Social Democratic Party of Greece who was sacked as EP vice-president after the scandal emerged.

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A fourth person arrested on the same preliminary charge is also linked to this group of MEPs: Niccolò Figa-Talamanca, Secretary General of the NGO Sem Pas, Não Há Justiça.

‘Qatargate’ resulted from an investigation by a Belgian judge into alleged offers to MEPs and EP committee aides from Qatar and Morocco to influence decisions in Brussels, with suitcases seizing a total of 1.5 million. Euros.

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