Brussels (Brussels Morning) As of 3 November, everyone wishing to access the European Parliament’s buildings will be required to present a valid EU Digital COVID-19 Certificate, including journalists.
This extends a measure that had been in place for all external visitors since the beginning of September.
MEPs have shown little enthusiasm for the decision. A number have written to the President, David Sassoli, complaining that it makes the European Parliament “the first in Europe to implement such a measure”. Moreover,they note: “This would breach a very fundamental principle in a democratic house: never should an elected representative, having fulfilled all legal obligations, be prevented from entering the Parliament.”
Signatories include François-Xavier Bellamy (EPP), Michèle Rivasi (Greens), Virginie Joron (ID group) and Anne-Sophie Pelletier (The Left).
On a separate pledge, the Left, while acknowledging the need to ensure the normal functioning of the Parliament, noted that such a decision is “at odds with applicable Belgian law”. Moreover, they were concerned that the stipulation “makes the COVID Certificate a condition for employment”.
Launched in July, the EU COVID-19 certificate proves that a person is either fully vaccinated, has immunity after having recovered from COVID-19 or can show a recent negative PCR test result.
Both digital and paper formats of the COVID-19 Certificate or a valid equivalent certificate will be accepted.For those who didn’t take the jab, a proof of a negative result of a PCR test carried out within the last 48 hours in Belgium, Luxembourg or France will be accepted.
Existing precautionary measures, including the compulsory wearing of a medical face mask and temperature checks at entrances, remain in place.