MEPs elect Jean-Claude Juncker to head EU Commission

Baku, July 15 (AZERTAC). A majority in the European Parliament has approved former Luxembourg PM Jean-Claude Juncker to be President of the European Commission.

He got 422 votes out of the 729 total cast in the secret ballot, despite strong opposition earlier from Britain.

He told reporters in Strasbourg he was prepared to discuss repatriating some powers from Brussels to member states.

A firm believer in EU integration, he will succeed incumbent Jose Manuel Barroso of Portugal in November.

In a speech to MEPs, he pledged the Commission would be a "political body", not just Europe's civil service.

He got sustained applause when he said the euro "protects Europe".

Mr Juncker was well over the 376 votes minimum that he needed. There were 250 votes against him, 47 abstentions and 10 spoilt ballots.

Mr Juncker, a veteran of Brussels deal-making, was lead candidate of the centre-right European People's Party (EPP), which won May's European elections. He played a key role in the eurozone bailouts.

The presidency is the most powerful job in Brussels. The Commission drafts EU laws, oversees national budgets, enforces EU treaties and negotiates international trade deals.

On Wednesday EU leaders are expected to nominate a new EU foreign policy chief, to replace Baroness Ashton.


© Content from this site must be hyperlinked when used.
Report a mistake by marking it and pressing ctrl + enter


Fields with * are required.

Please enter the letters as they are shown in the image above.
Letters are not case-sensitive.