European Socialists: Dijsselbloem’s ‘booze’ comment ‘simply unacceptable’; doesn’t represent PES

The Party of European Socialists (PES) distanced itself on Wednesday from the comments made by Eurogroup President Jeroen Dijsselbloem about debt-ridden nations, saying they are “simply unacceptable” and “offensive”.

In an interview published on 20 March 2017 in German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Dijsselbloem said countries that faced financial difficulties had spent their money on “booze and women.”

“His words by no means reflect the vision of our political family, the way we value people or the European project we are fighting for,” the party said. “Solidarity, equality and non-discrimination are core historical values of the social democratic political family and they will continue to be.”

Taking his turn, PES president Sergei Stanishev said: “With just one sentence Dijsselbloem managed to insult and discredit so many people and spread divisions. His words were offensive to both Southern and Northern European countries, women and men. Dijsselbloem’s remarks are simply unacceptable, especially in such critical time for the European integration project.”

Stanishev noted the EU is just a few days away from the 60 anniversary of the Rome Treaty and it is “a real shame for a representative of our political family to contradict the very essence of the values of unity, respect and solidarity which are the foundations of the European project.”