Germany has joined a group of leading European Union member states in rejecting proposals for further common fiscal measures aimed at helping EU states badly affected by the coronavirus pandemic. Italy, Spain and France joined forces in asking the Union to issue temporary bonds to help eurozone members cope with the closure of business and factories but Berlin urged for cautious measures as it remains unclear how long the COVID-19 pandemic will last. But the hard stance Chancellor Angela Merkel adopted sparked accusations of selfishness and prejudice against Germany.
Italian journalist Alberto Lupini told Italia a Tavola: “Unfortunately the pandemic is not only taking the lives of too many people and putting the world economy on its knees.
“It’s also killing the dreams of those like me, like you in addition of being a proud Italian, was convinced they could be a proud European to share peace, welfare and civility burying forever hatred and wars. But I’m afraid this can no longer be the case.
“The coronavirus is unveiling selfishness, prejudice and the sleazy ambition of national supremacy based on still being different and superior.”
Mr Lupini continued: “Germany, who was responsible for two world wars it lost and recovered from thanks to the solidarity of other European has never renounced its attempts to rule over the continent.
JUST IN: UK’s terrifying REAL death toll released – far higher than NHS stats
“It has been doing it for some time thanks to the strength of its economy which it uses as a mean no less unprejudiced than weapons.
“It has conditioned European institutions for decades, making us all pay for the rightful reunification between the east and the west, and now, in a lucid yet terrifying folly, some of its bureaucrats are tempted to play the final card and exploiting a pandemic they so far thought they were immune from.”
The position Germany adopted also sparked internal warnings about the future of the European Union, with Economy Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni claiming the lack of solidarity some members are showing puts the European project in danger.
Mr Gentiloni urged Berlin to act immediately to support fellow member states amid the growing risk of a global recession sparked by the pandemic.
READ MORE: Boris puts new spin on famous Thatcher quote as he announces 20,000 NHS workers return
Speaking to Euronews, the euro commissioner said: “A no to solidarity at this moment would put in danger all our project.
“We can’t avoid a recession in the situation where we have a lockdown of our cities, our services and in several countries also our companies in general.
“But we can also have a strong bounce back after the recession.”
And a group of Italian MEPs and mayors, including the leaders of two of the worst-hit towns in Northern Italy, Bergamo and Brescia, hit out at Germany for the lack of help despite Italy supporting pleas to have German war debt cut to reignite the economy at the end of World War II.
Andrew Neil blasts journalists at coronavirus press conference [VIDEO]
Premier League, Sky and BT Sport hold talks over new-look coverage [SPORT]
Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury’s and Aldi refuse children in supermarkets [LATEST]
The letter read: “The debt Germany had after 1945 was 29.7 billion German marks.
“Germany would never have been able to repay it. In 1953 in London, 21 countries (including France, Italy, Spain and Belgium) agreed to Germany halving the debt and delay payment of the remaining debts.
“That way, Germany was able to avoid going into default. Italy is still sure and proud today of that decision.”
They added: “Dear German friends, memory helps make the right decision. Your place is with the great European countries. Your place is with the Europe on institutions, the values of freedom and solidarity. It’s not behind small national selfishness.
“Let’s show everyone together Europe is stronger than those who want it weaker.”
Source: Read Full Article