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Brexit Party 'a disgrace' says UK MEP after final Strasbourg sitting

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Brexit Party 'a disgrace' says UK MEP after final Strasbourg sitting
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Video and image credit: Twitter/Michael Heaver
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Brexit Party MEPs who celebrated their final day in the European Parliament in Strasbourg and joked about being made redundant show little regard for dozens of colleagues and their staff who will lose their jobs when Britain leaves the European Union on January 31, a UK MEP has said.

Catherine Rowett, Green Party MEP, told Euronews that for every British MEP that loses their job in two weeks "six or seven parliamentary assistants in Brussels and office assistants in the UK will lose their jobs.

"These loyal people are being cast out into job-seeking at a difficult time," she said.

In a triumphant video, a trio of Brexit-supporting MEPs called the final sitting in the French city "historic", while another expressed happiness about being made redundant.

But other British MEPs struck a more regretful tone, saying that Britons will remain part of Europe and criticising their colleagues' reaction.

Rowett said Brexit Party MEPs had "wasted their time and a lot of money fooling around".

The UK's representatives in Europe still have two weeks left of work in Brussels before January 31, when the country is set to leave the EU.

The country will then enter a transition period until December 31, during which London and Brussels will try and hammer out their future relationship.

'Happy to be made redundant'

Brexit Party MEP Michael Heaver, who represents the East of England constituency, posted the video to his Twitter account on Thursday.

Martin Daubney, who appears in the video with Heaver, said: "On a personal level, I've had this bizarre feeling. I'm really happy to be being made redundant. What's that about?"

Meanwhile, their colleague, Christina Jordan, a Brexit MEP for south-west England, said she was "incredibly, incredibly proud".

Another MEP, Henrik Overgaard Nielson, was another to say he would be happy to be out of this particular job.

'It's just a sabbatical'

On the other side of the debate, some MEPs expressed sadness, especially as the Brexit deadline looms.

"I am distraught at the idea of stopping the work just as we are formulating the campaigns and beginning on the new legislative programme. There is so much urgent work to do on the climate crisis," Rowett said. She said it was "tragic" that the UK could not continue to collaborate on new policies in the bloc.

Ellie Chowns, another Green Party MEP, talked about the symbolism of Strasbourg and the future of the UK-Europe relationship.

"This beautiful city symbolises peace and reconciliation between France and Germany. And this Parliament symbolises international cooperation and dialogue," Chowns said.

She called it a "sad day" but added, "I believe we Brits will always remain European".

Meanwhile, Labour Party MEP Seb Dance tweeted that it was just a "sabbatical" and that he expected British MEPs to be back someday.

"One day British MEPs will get to sit here again and represent our interests and work with our neighbours to solve common problems," Dance tweeted.

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