Econostrum | Economic News in the Mediterranean

The European Parliament loses its President David Sassoli

Written by Eric Apim on Tuesday, January 11th 2022 à 15:50 | Read 347 times

David Sassoli died a few days before the end of his mandate (photo: European Parliament)
David Sassoli died a few days before the end of his mandate (photo: European Parliament)
EU. David Sassoli died on Monday night (10 January) at the Oncology Reference Centre (ORC) in Aviano, north of Venice, at the age of 65. He had been hospitalised there since 26 December 2021 "due to a serious complication caused by a dysfunction of the immune system", said his spokesman, Roberto Cuillo. A statement on the European Parliament's website indicated since Monday 10 January 2022 that all his official engagements were cancelled.

President of the European Parliament since 3 July 2019, his mandate was due to end in January 2022. The election was scheduled for 18 January 2022. In November 2021, his parliamentary group (S&D - Social Democrats) had campaigned for him to serve a second term. In mid-December 2021, he decided not to present a candidate due to his health condition. It remains highly likely that the Maltese Roberta Metsola of the EPP (right) will become the new president of this institution.

Tributes have been pouring in. "We already miss his warmth, generosity, friendliness and smile," said Charles Michel, President of the European Council. Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission, said she was "extremely saddened by this terrible loss of a great European and proud Italian, a thoughtful journalist, an extraordinary President of the Parliament and above all a dear friend."

"A Europe that guides and enlightens"

A graduate of the University of Florence, his home town, this former Italian journalist, who first worked for seven years for the Roman editorial office of the daily Il Giorno, joined RAI, Italy's main public television station, in 1992. After working as a television reporter and correspondent for TG3 (Telegiornale - RAI 3 news), he moved to the editorial office of TG1 (RAI 1) as a special correspondent and then as head of the evening news editions before becoming deputy director of TG1 and head of in-depth programmes (TV7) and "Speciale TG1".)

In 2007, David Sassoli embarked on a political career within the newly created Democratic Party. Two years later, he was elected Member of the European Parliament for the Central Italy constituency and from 2009 to 2014 he was head of the Democratic Party delegation.

In his last official speech to the European Council on 16 December 2021 in Brussels, he said: "Europe also and above all needs a new project of hope, a project that brings us all together, a project that can embody our Union, our values and our civilisation, a project that is obvious to all Europeans and that enables us to come together. It seems to me that we can build this project around three strong axes, a triple desire for Europe unanimously shared by all Europeans: a Europe that innovates, a Europe that protects, and a Europe that guides and illuminates, like a lighthouse."

The European Parliament is the parliamentary body of the European Union and shares legislative power with the Council of the European Union. It is made up of 705 Members elected by direct universal suffrage for five years and divided into seven political groups. It has its headquarters in Strasbourg (plenary sessions) and its committees in Brussels. Its president is elected for two and a half years and can be re-elected.


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