A live Google+ hangout and euronews interview took place with president of the European Commission José Manuel Barroso on Thursday 12 September! During the Hangout, President Barroso answered a number of questions on topics that were concerning the euronews viewers.
Social diversity in the EUWhen asked about social diversity in Europe, President Barroso emphasised the sheer diversity of languages in the EU: “The language of Europe is translation.” He was keen to express that all EU legislation is translated into each of the 24 EU languages.
Crisis changePresident Barroso was asked about the “crisis” surrounding climate change. He suggested that it is not a simple issue and described it as “an existential threat to our planet.” In response to Alice on the Google+ Hangout, President Barroso said Europe is leading by example with regards to climate change.
Independence for Catalonia and ScotlandOne of the Google+ panelists asked President Barroso about the potential outcome of independence for Catalonia and Scotland, from an EU perspective. He responded that they would be treated in the same way as any other potential EU states, saying that each “new state has to apply for membership.”
Border disputesTony Evans asked if the EU was going to intervene in the “politically motivated” frontier checks between Gibraltar and Spain. President Barroso said that, if freedom of circulation in terms of people or goods is compromised, or illegal activity is discovered, the EU will act in “an independent, objective manner.”
DiscriminationEvelyne from Canada asked where the EU stands on discrimination and homophobia, to which President Barroso responded that it is “against our principles, norms and values.”
Foreign affairsIn response to his question about foreign affairs amongst the EU member states, Pedro from Portugal was told that it is up to the member states to have a common policy.
European Commission President José Manuel Barroso was also interviewed on euronews at 8:30pm.