The cdH President, Benoît Lutgen, confirmed on Sunday evening, during a live speech televised on RTL-TVI and La Une news, that Wallonia was subject to series of pressures. These came as part of the discussions preceding the signature of the free trade agreement between the European Union and Canada (CETA). He appealed to the President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, “to wake up” as only Wallonia moved to obtain breakthroughs for SMEs and farmers.
At the end of the press conference around the signature of CETA on Sunday in Brussels, Mr Juncker stated that the European Commission had never threatened Wallonia.
He raged, “Moreover, I told both the cdH address and its President this.” Benoît Lutgen commented, “I do not understand why he reacted so late,” recalling that the President of the Commission was “not directly” targeted in his proposals on the pressures. He said that the latter were, however, well presented through, in particular, “diplomatic proposals which are very clear all the same.”
Lutgen went on, “There were, although presented in a low-key manner, some insinuations that it was necessary to pay attention and that there would be consequences for Wallonia.”
He concluded “These were an entire series of pressures which, in my eyes, were completely unacceptable.” Jean-Claude Juncker also advised Belgium to reflect on its internal models for signing international treaties.
Mr Lutgen added “That suggestion is irrelevant now and now his role in this has come to end.” The President of the cdH continued to appeal to Mr Juncker to both demonstrate courage and have the European Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society, Günther Oettinger step down. The latter, in had particularly offensively stated that Wallonia was a micro-region managed by Communists.