• European Parliament, Strasbourg - 27 September 2011
• Speaker: Nigel Farage MEP, UKIP, Co-President of the EFD Group
in the European Parliament (Europe of Freedom and Democracy)
• Debate: Question Hour with the President of the Eurogroup, Jean-Claude Juncker
Video Source: EbS - European Parliament
Mr Juncker, as President of the Eurogroup, your detachment from reality is almost unbelievable. You're behaving like a political ostrich, pretending none of it is happening.
You've just told us just a few moments ago that Greece fundamentally has no problems because she's a member of the eurozone. It's just deluded.
And you wrote recently, that the euro's thirteen-year history is a success story. Well, it's a very odd kind of success, isn't it? And actually, saying that beggars belief and I think hardly makes you credible.
I think it's about time that you and others in this room woke up to the fact that we are inflicting misery on millions of people; through unemployment, through poverty, through a lack of democracy, and that it's an error to try and keeping countries trapped inside the euro prison.
The recent proposal is that Greece should write down her debt by 50% and remain a member of the eurozone. Surely, Mr Juncker if that happenes the same would happen to Portugal and Ireland too.
Do you think it's possible for any member state of the euro to write down their debts and stay a member of the euro?
Jean Claude Juncker:
Mr President, I didn't say that Greece has no problems, I didn't say that. I did say that although Greece is a member of the euro area, Greece is in deep problems. So don't take it the way round that you can put the question you any way had the intention to put.
Second point. I don't think that it would be wise and useful for the present euro area to take part in all kind of speculation of the nature of those you were mentioning in your question.
The second question was linked to my credibility, as far as I understood. I prefer mine to yours.
Very good, Mr Juncker. Interesting. Well, on this very point of credibility you yourself said back in April that when things become serious you have to lie. That is what you said back in April. And it seems to me that things are pretty serious and that frankly everything you say is a lie. The euro cannot and should not be held together under its current construction and it's about time you admit it, you and all of you in this room: you've got this wrong and countries like Greece need to be set free.
Juncker (through interpreter):
President, you've just quoted a newspaper, which wasn't even British - it's a German newspaper - saying that when things get tough we have to lie.
Perhaps I should actually quote what I said in the language of the newspaper which you've referred to.
The quotation was correct to some extent, but taken out of context.
In Brussels I was speaking to the pan-European Movement - these are people who believe in Europe - we have to speak to them sometimes as well.
In previous years, back in the days when I was a finance minitser, every few months there was talk about valueing or devalueing currencies in the European currency system.
So back then we often used to meet on Sundays for example or just about before the markets closed and at such times it was so difficult for us to tell the truth. However the mistake I made was that by trying to be honest I actually used a form of words which paved the way to your supplimentary question.