EU budget talks deal blow to young and poor
Reacting to a European summit deal that seeks the first cut to the EU budget in its 56-year history, GUE/NGL President Gabi Zimmer accused EU leaders of an assault on the future of millions of young people across Europe.
"EU leaders have shown that they have no regard for future generations. With cuts to the Erasmus student exchange programme combined with cosmetic promises of the 'youth guarantee', these talks are a snub to the young. We will continue to push for the real sustainable growth, jobs and education policies that are the only way out of the crisis."
"Cuts to cohesion and structural funds - the tools that implement the EU's regional policy - will hit Europe's poorest regions most. The severe provisions on macroeconomic conditionality are something we have been fighting against for the last year and we will continue fighting this in the parliament as it is totally unjust. Unfortunately, irrational austerity policies have come to dominate thinking on the European budget. Furthermore, cuts to the European Development Fund that provides aid for development cooperation is a major blow for the global poor."
"Sadly, conservative eurosceptics have won the day. Now, the consent of MEPs is required and I hope that the leaders of political groups in the European Parliament follow through on their speeches and reject this austerity budget."