Bigger bribe payer than Qatar?
Now Morocco is moving into the crosshairs in the EU scandal
Created: 12/29/2022, 4:12 p.m
By: Jens Kiffmeier
Suddenly in the pillory: Morocco is said to play a bigger role in the EU corruption scandal than previously thought.
So far, the country has remained unmolested - in contrast to Qatar.
Brussels – Large-scale bribery payments: Morocco apparently plays a much larger key role in the EU corruption scandal than previously known.
The Moroccan foreign secret service DGED is said to have been involved at the highest level and influenced MEPs with money and gifts.
reported on Thursday (December 29), citing investigation documents.
Accordingly, the bribery from the country began before that from Qatar.
Nevertheless, the North African state has so far remained unmolested in the reactions and consequences.
EU corruption scandal: Morocco is said to play a major role in the Eva Kaili and Panzeri affair
The EU corruption scandal has been occupying the investigators of the Belgian judiciary for two weeks.
The accusation: Qatar and Morocco are said to have bribed MEPs with money and gifts.
In a raid on 18 apartments and offices, 1.5 million euros were confiscated and five people arrested.
Among them are the former Vice President of the European Parliament, Eva Kaili, and her partner Francesco Giorgi, who in turn have admitted at least some of the allegations in confessions.
The mastermind is the former EU politician Pier Antonio Panzeri, who is also in custody.
Who all had access to the former Vice President of Parliament?
Eva Kaili is at the center of the EU corruption scandal.
© Jean-Francois Badias/ap/dpa
Panzeri is said to have processed and distributed funds through a non-governmental organization (NGO).
A lot of funds flowed from Qatar and Morocco in particular.
Both countries deny this.
But internal papers from the investigators probably prove something else.
On the Moroccan side, the current ambassador in Poland is said to have acted as a key figure between the African foreign intelligence service and the EU parliamentarians.
, he is said to have repeatedly given envelopes full of money to suspects.
In addition, there were repeated direct contacts between Panzeri's network and the DGED.
Bribery and money laundering: In the EU scandal, Morocco apparently wanted to influence fishing rights
According to the media report, generous monetary payments should influence European Union (EU) decisions on fishing rights or control of Western Sahara.
To what extent this was successful is unclear.
So far, the European Parliament has focused primarily on Qatar.
After the investigators had publicly confirmed that a Gulf state might be influencing the situation, the EU Parliament took action and stopped the planned visa facilitation for Qatar and revoked diplomats' access rights to the Brussels institution.
Corruption in the European Parliament: In contrast to Qatar, the EU politicians have so far not drawn any conclusions
Although there have always been rumors of bribery from Morocco, the country had not been punished in previous resolutions on the EU scandal – unlike Qatar.
The left faction had tried to include Morocco in the resolution through amendments.
But in vain, the conservative European People's Party, including all German Christian Democrats present, voted against the motion, as reported by
The Greens voted unanimously in favor, while the majority of Liberals and Social Democrats voted against.