Thursday

2nd Apr 2020

New EU parliament buildings named

  • The Konrad Adenauer bridge (Photo: EUobserver)

The European Parliament has reached a decision on the names of the new buildings constructed to house the hundreds of new member state MEPs that have arrived in Brussels since 2004.

On Monday (14 January), the parliament's administrative bureau reached a final decision after a series of highly political discussions taking into account party-political affiliation, relation to the EU and nationality.

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The new buildings are to be named after Willy Brandt, the German chancellor from 1969 to 1974, and József Antal, the Hungarian prime minister from 1990 to 1993.

The bridge connecting the new building to the original structure is to be known as Konrad Adenauer bridge. Konrad Adenauer was the German chancellor from 1949 to 1963.

Meanwhile, the parliament's press room is to be named after the assassinated Russian journalist, Anna Politkovskaya.

Referring to the press conference room, parliament resident Hans-Gert Poettering underlined the strong symbolism of the name.

"Anna Politkovskaya was a courageous woman who fought for freedom of the press and of expression in her country. She is a symbol of these values and we honour her and her commitment, which should not be forgotten", he said.

Names for the new buildings were first floated in 2005.

Centre-right Polish MEPs tried to have the new buildings named after Pope John Paul II, who had recently died, arguing that the pope had contributed to the collapse of communism and the re-unification of Europe.

But this was disputed by liberal and socialist MEPs, who said using the name of a religious leader would have gone against principles of secularism.

The parliament first began naming its buildings after famous European historical figures in 1998.

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