Sinn Féin’s spokesperson on Foreign Affairs, Seán Crowe TD, speaking in the Dáil today, called on the government to oppose the further militarisation of the EU at the upcoming European Council meeting.
Deputy Crowe said:
“This European Council meeting will focus on reports aimed at laying out how the EU can, by increased militarisation, extend its global influence.
“Yet we know that while children and families across Europe are going hungry, EU member states are spending €194 billion on weapons.
“Independent research has shown that State investment in military spending, as well as being the wrong thing to do, is one of the least effective ways to create jobs. For every Euro invested in education or public transport twice as many jobs are created than an equal amount invested in the arms industry.
“This European Council meeting should be a summit for peace, not for arms lobbyists.
“Today I challenged the Taoiseach to explain what he meant when he stated that the government will be seeking to maintain and enhance the effectiveness of the Common Security Defence Policy at the Council Meeting. I did not get a coherent reply.
“Hard pressed EU citizens are crying out for leadership, looking for more investment in social programmes, hoping against the odds for any real job creation programmes, health care projects, and social protection schemes.
“Yet EU leaders will meet to listen and address complaints about the lack of military spending.
“It’s time to stop putting defence lobbyists' needs above those of citizens.”