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Home arrow newsitems arrow CoE Anti-Corruption watchdog Head Mrcela to EF on French Presidential: ALL Politicians to be Cleaned

CoE Anti-Corruption watchdog Head Mrcela to EF on French Presidential: ALL Politicians to be Cleaned

Written by ACM
Monday, 20 March 2017
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*Strasbourg/CoE/Angelo Marcopolo/- Marin Mrcela, from Croatia, President of CoE's Anti-Corruption Watchdog, known as "GRECO", replying to an "Eurofora"'s Question on the forthcoming French Presidential Elections of April/May 2017, stressed, in substance, that, as a matter of Pinciple, "All" Top Candidates have to be Checked and "Cleaned" from any eventualy Pending serious Allegations, and Not Only Some among them, Excluding the Others, particularly according to their Political Color, since that would be Contary to Democracy, Fairness, and Efficient Prevention of Corruption, absolutely opposite to CoE's Legal Standards.

 - "All Politicians Must be Cleaned !", strongly and clearly Replied, immediately, President Mrcela, to "Eurofora"s Topical Question about the Problems recently seen in France, where All main Candidates of the Right are notoriously Harassed by various Judicial Enquiries and Prosecutions, while, on the Contrary, Noone among the Left's Candidates has been yet disturbed, Despite growing suspicions and/or denonciations at least about one among them, (Comp., f.ex. : ....).

 

 
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+ Invited by "Eurofora" to make it Clear whether he really Meant that, in such cases as that in France nowadays, such Moves should, normaly, affect not only the Top Candidates of the Right, but Also of the Left, GRECO's President was Adamant, reacting categoricaly, with a sharp : - "Absolutely !"...

 Interestingly, he spoke to "Eurofora" just after Launching a New "Evaluation Round" by GRECO, for the Next few Years, which will be Focused on "Prevention of Corruption in Top Governemental Functions, and Law Enforcement", obviously including similar cases.
++ President Mrcela confirmed, indeed, (in Reply to another relevant "Eurofora"s Question), that this New Round of GRECO's Monitoring, which has just officialy Started Today, included also Investigations about France.

 

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Meanwhile, shortly After notoriously Harassing the Head of France's main Opposition Party, that of Center-Right "Republicans", former President of the Country, Nicolas Sarkozy, with Various Judicial Enquiries and Prosecutions, during these Latest Years of the Out-Going Socialist Government, suddenly, in a Surprizing, Last-Minute Move, at the Eve of the Crucial French Presidential Election, certain Judges and Prosecutors, following some Leftist Press Reports, Started to Harass also Francois Fillon, former Prime Minister and currently the official Presidential Candidate of that Same, Center-Right "Republican" Party. To all this, wete Added, also, 2 Different Enquiries and Prosecutions against the Rightist "FN" Party's Candidate to the Presidentials, Marine Le Pen, (See, f.ex. : ....).

Moreover, while the main Accusations against those 2 Top Candidates from the Right side of the Political spectrum concerned more or less Controversial claims about comparatively Lenient matters, (such as, f.ex., the Fact that he always Used to Work Together with his Wife during all his long career, for Fillon, always declaring her legal pay from Funds for Assistants routinely disposed by any MP who can, reportedly, do practicaly what he likes with them, during his mandates, and the even Less serious Fact that Marine Le Pen had simply Replied to a Slander claiming that her Party would be Assimilated to .. Islamist Terrorists of ISIL, with a Tweeter reproducing Photos, already Published by Others in the Web, showing real ISIL's Atrocities, in order to Remind the obviously Huge Differencies between a Controversial but Legal Political Party playing the Democratic Game, and Brutal, Deadly Islamist Terrorism), nevertheless, a Totaly Opposite stance was, curiously, kept by French Judges and/or Prosecutors, even for Serious Accusations against Candidates of the Left :


- Thus, f.ex., Center-Left's Candidate Macron, (a Former Councelor of Socialist President Hollande and former Minister in the Out-Going Socialist Government), has notoriously been, in the Meantime, Accused, by various Medias etc., for at least 5 Cases with Suspicions of more or less serious, eventual Corruption Risks, at least apparent, concerning :

 

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(1) Alleged Favoritism etc. in the way that were Spend Public Funds and/or selected those who Benefited from such Money, in a Collective Trip to Las Vegas (USA) as Minister ; (2) Various Allegations/Suspicions related to his Eventual Sources of Funds supporting his Electoral Campaign, (for which he is the Only Candidate to be Deprived from a pre-existing Political Party) ; (3) Plagiarism to the Detriment of Top MEP, former Minister of Foreign affairs, Defense, and JHA, Michele Alliot-Marie, whose Electoral Campaign Logo, Moto and/or Introduction, have been Spectacularly ...Copied, almost Entirely, Texto, by Macron's Electoral Pamphlets (See : ....) ; (4) Conflict of Interests, via his Medical Counselor -Obliged to Resign- and Brother of a Top Member of his Electoral Campaign Staff, who used to be Paid a lot of Money by a Controversial Private "Big Pharma" Company, known also for the Deadly Drug Scandal of "Mediator" in the recent Past ; (5) Allegations concerning his Wife's private Property and its Real Value ;  (6) a Controversial Fiscal manouvre, Spending Half a Million : 500.000 € for "Repairs" of her Wife's Buildings, in only 1 Year, allegedly abused as a means to Avoid Paying Taxes on his Revenues, (etc).


French Judges and/or Prosecutors, However, apparently Droped, until now, All those Accusations or Suspicions concerning Macron, (only opening, very Lately, a simple Anonymous Investigation on the "Las Vegas" case, But withOut Involving Legaly the former Socialist Minister himself, Not even Mentioning his Name !)...


Nevertheless, Recently, at least 3 Different, Independent NGOs, generaly Well Known for being Dedicated to the Fight against Corruption in general ("Anti-Cor"), Independent Medical Information ("Formindep"), and Public Expenditute ("IREF"), have reportedly Written and/or Officialy Alerted the competent Judges and/or Prosecutors, Asking for various relevant Investigations to be Launched, until now in Vain... [Data Partly UPDATED].


It's true that Governing Socialist Parties, in General, seem to be very Keen, also in Various Other Countries, to Avoid, almost at Any Price, several notable Anti-Corruption Investigations and/or Legal Prosecutions against their Main Political Allies, as, f.ex., it can be seen Recently also in the case of Romania :

- After a Previous Socialist Government had notoriously Attempted even to ... Destitute the Democraticaly Elected, ChristianDemocrat/EPP President of Romania, some Years ago, Troian Basescu, who had supported Anti-Corruption Enquiries particularly on a Former Socialist Prime Minister, (See, f.ex. : ....), Nowadays, it's also anOther Socialist Government, in that Same Country, which Notoriously tried to systematicaly Avoid any Investigations/Legal Prosecutions for various Corruption-related Accusations against several of its Political Allies, provoking an Unprecedented Popular Upheaval, with a lot of persisting Massive Public Demonstrations, etc., which Obliged that controversial Government to Back down, until now...

 

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    >>> - But, as Romania's Chief Anti-Corruption Prosecutor, Ms Laura Codruta Kövesi, told "Eurofora" Today, (after her Speech to the relevant CoE's Conference on GRECO's work, earlier this same day : Comp. Supra), rumours Warned that the current Socialist Government of the country, might, eventualy, make anOther, Different Attempt to Prevent Anti-Corruption Enquiries/Prosecutions against several among its Pals, by Drafting a New Legislative Bill to DeCriminalize such Cases, which might be Adopted by the National Parliament, if everything goes as scheduled by the Socialists, "at the Latest on June" 2017, i.e. "just before MPs leave for Summer Recess".

 

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    That's another, still on-going, Issue on the making, that GRECO will probably Follow very closely in the foreseable Future, in the Framework, precisely, of its New "Evaluation Round" on "Preventing Corruption and Promoting Integrity in Central Governments' Top Executive functions", as well as among "Law Enforcement agencies", which Obviously Fits Well too the present French Case, as it emerged from Today's PanEuropean/International CoE's Conference in Strasbourg to Launch this New Monitoring period, in Cooperation and with the Participation, here, also of relevant Senior Officials from CoE's Parliamentary Assembly (PACE's Rapporteur on Corruption, MEP Michelle Nicoletti), the EU (OLAF's Director General, Giovanni Kessler), the OECD, IMF, UNO, etc.


    + But, another Original parameter of this 2017 CoE's Conference, that "Eurofora" attended, was the Fact that it Opened an Interesting area for Efficient Cooperation with relevant Civil Society and Citizens' possible moves, thanks also to the Participation of Representatives from EU Ombudsperson, Emily O'Reilly, NGOs such as "Transparency International", and "International Consortium of Investigative Journalists" (ICIJ), etc.

 

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    For that purpose, Each Time that CoE's Anti-Corruption Watchdog starts Monitoring a given Country, it systematicaly Makes an Appeal to Any Persons which might have Interesting Insights, Tips or Leads, with any useful relevant Facts or Tips, to Contribute in the Forthcoming Investigations at a PanEuropean level.

 
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  imag0573_400

    An "Eugenic" loophole Amendment, which might expose to Dangers reminiscent of "3rd Reich's" notorious Genetic Abuses, hidden at the last minute inside an otherwise Good, larger Health policy Package scheduled to be voted on Thursday, was strongly denounced by a coalition of MEPs from various Political Groups and Countries, in a Press Conference held this afternoon at EU Parliament in Strasbourg.

    Mainly calling to "Select Human Embryos", via "Genetic Counselling" and "pre-implantation" Techniques including "Genetic Tests", in order to "Eradicate Hereditary rare Diseases", it might open ways to Dangerous Practices in Future, they denounced in substance.

    But they also made it clear that a much larger Report inside which this Controversial Amendment "No 15" was added in dubious circumstances, officialy destinated to struggle against "Rare Diseases", and drafted by Professor Antonios Trakatellis, was otherwise "an Excellent Report", aiming at a "completely Uncontroversial target" of Health policy on which "all MEPs and Experts are united, believing that Europe should act" to protect People's Health (See "EuroFora"'s earlier News).

    The controversy came at a particularly delicate moment for the EU in relation to Citizens, at the eve of June 2009 EU Elections, and shortly before Ireland re-votes for "Lisbon Treaty"..    

- Denouncing risks of "an Eugenic demand, very similar to what we had during the 3rd Reich in Germany, but now coming from some Scientisists themselves", German ChristianDemocrat/EPP MEP Dr. Peter Liese stressed that critical MEPs were against "Eugenic" engineering with "Selection of Human Embryos", and anything which might ultimately lead up to to a "Selection of Human Race". It doesn't help to "eradicate" Human Lives, he added.


    Several Experts and NGOs expressed "Deep Concern", as f;ex. DR M.C. Cornel of the "European Society of Human Genetics", which stressed, on this occasion, that "the importance of Non-Directiveness in Reproductive issues is a Central characteristic of Human Genetics, after the Atrocities committed in the name of Genetics in the first half or the 20th Century".

     - "This is completely Unacceptable", stressed Italian Liberal MEP Vittorio Prodi, on the Controversial Amendment, also because pushes to "eliminate early Human Life", as he noted.

     - "This opens a Dangerous Road, rather a Motorway", denounced Danish MEP Mrs Margrette Auken, from the "Greens", observing that various similar attempts were made in the Past "not only in Germany, but also in several other Countries, "even at the 1970ies", "f.ex. on forced Sterilisation of Roma" People, and other criticisable situations f.ex. in the UK, in Sweden, etc. as she said.

    + Other NGOs, as f.ex. "LebenHilfe" from Berlin, added that, among various other Risks, could also be that, by exploiting the pre-implantation Genetic Diagnostics and the Selection of "healthy" Embryos, some may "propagate" several "Eugenic" aims, starting f.ex. by pushing to eradicate Human Livies which might "Cost too much" to preserve, ultimately exposing to dangers reminiscent of the "3rd Reich"'s atrocious abuses.

    In consequence, ChristianDemocrats/EPP and "Green" MEPs "decided by Majority to vote against" this Controversial Amendment, anounced to Journalists the 5 MEPs who participated in the Press Conference, representing a wide spectrum, from Liberals to "Greens" and ChristianDemocrats, and from Hungary, Italy, Germany and Danemark up to Ireland (Gay Mitchell), etc.
----------------------------------
    Hungarian ChristianDemocrat MEP Laszlo Surjan said "that it was "Suddenly, at the End of the Procedure" in Committee, that "appeared this (Controversial) Amendment, which has nothing to do" with the main purpose of the Report, on which all agreed.

    He denounced an "Unhonest" move, and called to "avoid this kind of unacceptable situations". Nobody should "Select People", Surjan stressed.

    - "We (MEPs) had No Chance to Discuss" this last-minute Amendment earlier added at a Committee's level, said German MEP Peter Liese

    Speaking to "EuroFora", Dr. Liese, the Spokesman of the ChristianDemocrat/EPP Group in EU Parliament, said that MEPs didn't oppose other references of the Report f.ex. on "Genetic Tests", because they were "no proposals" to impose them, while, on the contrary, there was "a Problem" if anyone attempted to "impose" f.ex. this or that Genetic Technique and "Genetic Counselling", etc. to the People on human reproduction.
-------------
The precise Text :
-----------------
    Controversial parts of Amendment No 15 ask mainly "to lead finally to the Eradication" of "Hereditary" "rare diseases", "through Genetic Counselling .., and ..pre-Implantation Selection of healthy Embryos".

    But  EU Rapporteur Professor Trakatellis, said to "EuroFora" that fears should be alleviated by Guarantees that all this should be done only "where appropriate", when it's "not contrary to existing National Law", and "always on a Voluntary basis", according to other Parts of the Amendment.

    He stressed that the main aim was to allow "a free and informed choice of persons involved", without imposing them anything :  - "It's not an obligatory, but advisary" text, he said.

    To make that point clear, he was ready, in agreement with many MEPs, to eventually drop at least that part of the controversial Amendment which initially called for "efforts to ..lead finally to the Eradication of those rare diseases" "which are Hereditary".

    But, until late Wednesday evening, reportedly together with many other MEPs, he stood by all the rest of the controversial Amendment, (fex. on the "Genetic Counselling" and the "pre-implantation Selection of healthy Embryos"), so that critical MEPs, going from ChristianDemocrats as Dr. Liese, to "Greens" or "Ind/Dem", observed to "EuroFora" that "this was not enough" to close the dangerous loophole.

    Particularly since, as Professor Trakatellis noted himself, "this is already allowed to the U.K.", and "other National Legislations would probably follow, sooner or later" in a similar direction. As for a general call to "Eradicate Hereditary rare Diseases", this "should happen, at any case, in practice, de facto", to protect public Health.

    On the contrary, "our goal should be to help patients suffering from rare diseases, not to eradicate the patients. In case of genetic disease risk, the decision should not be guided by scenarios" made by politicians. "Perents who may decide to accept a child, even if handicapped or with genetic disease, must be respected and supported with solidarity", critical MEPs stated.

    - "Any Pressure" to "a patient or couple (who "should be able to make an informed choice consistent with their own values"),"from health Professionals, Public Health Policies or Governemental Institutions, or Society at large, should be avoided", stresses the "European Society for Human Genetics".

----------------------------------

Each MEP's vote will be registered !

-----------------------------------   

The Socialist Group requested a "Split vote" on the Amendment 15, first without, and afterwards with the words "lead finally to the Eradication" etc.


    But the first "split vote" leaves intact all the other parts of the Controversial Amendment, (i.e. "Genetic Counselling", "Selection of healthy Embryos", etc).

    That's why, 3 Groups of MEPs : ChristianDemocrats/EPP, "Greens/EFA", and "Ind/Dem", have asked for "Roll Call Votes", on everything regarding the Controversial Amendment No 15, and on the final outcome of the resulting Report as amended, which will register all the individual positions to be taken by each MEP.   

Something which will obviously make each MEP think twice before voting for one or another choice, to be sure that he/she will make the right choice in front of EU Citizens, particularly at these pre-Election times...


    Crucial Votes were scheduled between 12 Noon and 1 p.m. local Strasbourg time, in the middle of a long series of various other Reports, and after a long Public Debate on the larger Health policy package, from 9 to 11.50 am.

    The specific Report inside which was hidden the controversial Amendment is due to be debated between 11 and 12 am.

    So that more last-minute Surprises may not be excluded a priori...

    Particularly at the present Historic moment, when even the Institutional Future of the EU depends on the result of a second Referendum on "Lisbon Treaty", later this year, in ...Ireland, a mainly Catholic country, where People are particularly sensitive in such kind of socio-cultural and values issues...
 

      ***     
 
     (Draft due to be updated).
 
***

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