News BlogEEAS High Representative

Parliament summons 5 new ambassadors to interview them

(BRUSSELS2) (updated) The European Parliament's Foreign Affairs Committee decided today in Strasbourg to hear five of the new EU ambassadors (1): in China, Japan, in Georgia, Lebanon and Pakistan, as well as the new EU Special Representative in Sudan, Rosalind Marsden, appointed in August (2). The hearing will take place before the Foreign Affairs Committee in October. An audition that will take place publicly (and not behind closed doors as previously announced); the coordinators of the groups having decided not to retain the format used previously, to hear the new ambassador to Afghanistan (3) and the United States. This new procedure is the result of a gentleman's agreement concluded between the European Parliament and the High Representative of the EU, within the framework of the new diplomatic service (4).

As the European Parliament cannot hear all the ambassadors either, it has agreed to limit itself to positions “strategically important“. Even if these hearings have only limited value, at the legal level, it would be difficult for the High Representative to validate the appointment of an ambassador if Parliament expresses public disavowal. And Parliament could be decided to impose its mark by “helling” the candidates a little, if not these, at least the following ones. As he did for the hearings of the European commissioners which were initially conceived as a simple exchange of views and became with the appointment of the Barroso I then Barroso II Commission, a quasi-right of recusal, subsequently ratified by the Treaty.

Read also:
(1) The new EU ambassadors. And the nominees are...
(2) Rosalind Marsden appointed in Sudan
(3) Usackas (SpeRep Afghanistan) auditioned in Parliament
(4) The European Parliament sets foot in the door of the Diplomatic Service

(Nicolas Gros-Verheyde)

Nicolas Gros Verheyde

Chief editor of the B2 site. Graduated in European law from the University of Paris I Pantheon Sorbonne and listener to the 65th session of the IHEDN (Institut des Hautes Etudes de la Défense Nationale. Journalist since 1989, founded B2 - Bruxelles2 in 2008. EU/NATO correspondent in Brussels for Sud-Ouest (previously West-France and France-Soir).