Press: EU parliament drivers had DAESH propaganda

Published 17.04.2016 21:19

Two drivers for European Parliament members possessed DAESH propaganda, according to a report by a German newspaper on Saturday.

Der Spiegel weekly, citing informed sources, said that DAESH propaganda CDs were found among two drivers' personal effects, and that the discoveries prompted a recent decision by the European parliament to create its own team of chauffeurs rather than relying on private service providers.

That decision is in itself controversial as it will increase the transport costs for the EU parliament by 10 million euros ($11 million) annually. According to Der Spiegel, the parliament is justifying the change on the suspicion that the case of the two drivers may not be an isolated one, and that private sector companies may be more susceptible to infiltration by individuals linked to extremist groups. A spokesman for European parliament in Brussels told AFP that there were never "questions of security."

According to the Biribin Limousines firm, which employed the drivers found with the offending material, "no driver has been sacked. There has never been anything (untoward) found in our cars." The Paris-based company dismissed the Spiegel report as "a tissue of lies."

On April 6 the European parliament, which has houses of parliament in both Brussels and Strasbourg, announced that one of the extremists who blew themselves up in DAESH attacks in Brussels on March 22, several years ago worked briefly as a cleaner for the parliament. Najim Laachraoui was said to have had a summer holiday job cleaning at the parliament for one month in 2009 and one month in 2010.

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