Eva Kaili, one of the vice-presidents of the European Parliament, has been expelled by her political party in Greece as part of an investigation into corruption.
The Panhellenic Socialist Movement (PASOK), one of Greece’s main opposition parties, said in a statement on Friday: “Following the latest developments and the Belgian authorities’ investigation into the corruption of EU officials, MEP Eva Kaili is expelled from PASOK-Movement for Change by decision of President Nikos Androulakis.
Kaili’s political group in the European Parliament, the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats, also announced on Friday that it was suspending Kaili from the group with immediate effect “in response to ongoing investigations”.
It comes as Belgium’s federal prosecutor confirmed to Belgium’s state broadcaster RTBF on Friday that one of the parliament’s 14 vice-presidents had been questioned in connection with a corruption probe involving the European Parliament and a country. of the Persian Gulf.
In a press release, the prosecutor specifies that for two years, Belgian federal police inspectors “suspect a Persian Gulf country of influencing the economic and political decisions of the European Parliament”, according to RTBF.
Belgian police suspect the country of having transferred “consecutive sums of money” or “significant gifts” to important players in the European Parliament, according to RTBF.
The federal prosecutor did not identify the vice president but said he was one of four people questioned.
“Among those arrested (there is) an elderly MEP,” said the prosecutor.
Bahrain, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates all surround the Persian Gulf.
Searches carried out as part of the investigation resulted in the seizure of around 600,000 euros ($632,000) in cash, according to RTBF. Computer equipment and telephones were also seized as part of the sixteen searches that took place in the Belgian regions of Ixelles, Schaerbeek, Crainhem, Forest and Brussels.