The European Parliaments plenary session will end on Tuesday rather than Thursday, and MEPs wont vote, in a bid to avoid coronavirus contamination.
A European Parliament spokesperson said: “The plenary will be reduced to Tuesday with four topics on the agenda [coronavirus, International Womens Day, migration and the EU summit on the blocs long-term budget] … No debates today, no votes this week.”
“It will be a plenary not like the others,” said Parliament spokesman Jaume Duch Guillot. He added that debates with European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and European Council President Charles Michel on Tuesday will take place “a priori” but there could be “changes in the order.”
MEPs were supposed to vote every day from Monday to Thursday, including on a resolution on the “state of play” of the coronavirus outbreak, as well as on an investigation into Andrej Babiš, the Czech prime minister, over alleged misuse of EU funds.
The plenary session had already been moved from Strasbourg to Brussels as part of measures announced by Parliament President David Sassoli to contain the spread of coronavirus, which also included banning visitors from Parliament buildings.
An email from the Parliaments secretary-general was sent to staff saying that people who are pregnant, over 60 or suffering from certain diseases could work from home.
On Sunday, an email from Klaus Welle, the Parliaments secretary-general, was sent to staff saying that people who are pregnant, over 60 or suffering from diabetes or “chronic respiratory disease” could work from home.
MEPs were advised to stay in isolation if they had traveled to one of the virus-hit areas in the past 14 days, but this was not binding and the advice was not followed by some lawmakers who were in Brussels on Monday.
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