Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission, defended Thursday’s flight in a private jet for 19 minutes during a June tour through the capitals of the EU. This was despite the financial and environmental implications.
Von der Leyen was criticised after it was revealed that she flew in June between Vienna and Bratislava as part of a tour to EU capitals to discuss the bloc’s future. pandemic recovery stimulus fund.
Eric Mamer (her spokesperson) stated on Thursday that the Vienna-Bratislava flight of 50 kilometers (31 miles), was part a tightly-planned two-day trip, which included flights to five EU members states.
Mamer stated that the top EU official could not have traveled by car because she needed to go on to Latvia for an evening appointment in Riga. He said that it would have been too time-consuming to leave the chartered plane in Vienna and travel to the capital of Slovakia.
The journey, which was first reported by Britain’s Daily Telegraph newspaper, covers less than 100 km and takes approximately an hour by car.
German newspaper Bild reported that Michael Jaeger, General Secretary of European Taxpayers Association, said that the flight was an “ecological crime” that cost taxpayers “a lot, a lot time to and from the airport, and most importantly, a lot credibility.”
Von der Leyen’s commission has made climate change a key focus, with flagship policies on the bloc’s transition to a net-zero economyThis week, the COP26 U.N. Climate Summit in Scotland was promoted.
The Daily Sabah Newsletter
Keep up to date with what’s happening in Turkey,
it’s region and the world.