The European Microscope for Middle East Issues revealed leaked documents of Emirate’s suspicious activities, including bribes and granting facilities and gifts, held to lure members of the European Parliament.
The European Microscope, a European institution concerned with monitoring the interactions of Middle Eastern issues in Europe, said that the documents show intense efforts by the UAE through its various arms to attract many members of the European Parliament in an effort from Abu Dhabi to curb opposing stances.
According to the documents, the UAE lobby in Europe has been working for months on a campaign to attract and gain the support of members of the European Parliament in various suspicious ways, as part of a systematic plan supervised by senior officials in Abu Dhabi.
The documents also reveal that the MEPs that the UAE is contacting to gain their positions include Dominique Bilde from France, Jilie Lechanteux from France, Philippe Olivier from France, Tom Berendsen from the Netherlands, Vera Tax from the Netherlands, Markus Buchheit from Germany and Ernest Urtasun from Spain, and Silvia Sardone from Italy et al.
Diplomatic sources commented that the UAE had intensified its campaign to buy off members of the European Parliament and polarize its positions in its favour or push them to refrain from supporting decisions against it.
The same sources indicated that the UAE campaign came as a response to the escalating criticism of the European Parliament in the past three years by adopting official decisions against Abu Dhabi, especially its poor human rights record.
On September 16, the European Parliament passed a resolution titled Human Rights Record in the Emirates that strongly criticized Abu Dhabi’s violations, the suppression of public freedoms, and the prohibition of peaceful assembly.
The resolution stated in its 14th article: “We call on international companies that sponsor Expo 2020 to withdraw their sponsorship, and we encourage member states not to participate in the event.”
At the time, the decision sparked official criticism from the UAE, in which the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation issued a statement in which it considered the European Parliament’s decision “not realistically correct.”
On February 11, 2021, the European Parliament passed a draft resolution entitled The Humanitarian and Political Situation in Yemen, which included in its third article “the demand for a complete ban on the export of security equipment to the UAE and Saudi Arabia.”
At the time, more than 90 per cent of MEPs, who spanned the entire political spectrum, voted in favour of the resolution.
The resolution called on the European Union countries to stop all arms sales to Saudi Arabia and the UAE without distinguishing between “offensive” and “defensive” weapons. It referred to human rights violations in Yemen to the International Criminal Court.
MEPs also urged EU governments to use the newly adopted EU global human rights sanctions mechanism to target Saudi and Emirati officials.
In addition, the European Parliament had previously issued a series of resolutions condemning the UAE’s foreign interventions, especially in Africa, and its violations of the rights of workers and women, under pressure from international organizations working in the field of human rights.
On the other hand, the UAE is known for its suspicious activities in establishing illegal relations with European parliamentarians and officials to cover up its violations and mobilize lobbies to whiten its image and attack its opponents.