Nigel Farage: Crisis Has Created 'German Dominated' Europe
Failure to tackle the eurozone crisis has produced a "German-dominated Europe", UK Independence Party leader Nigel Farage has said.
He claimed that German Chancellor Angela Merkel had taken charge because of the lack of leadership by a group of men - European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso, Economic Affairs Commissioner Olli Rehn, European Council President Herman Van Rompuy and Jean-Claude Juncker, the Luxembourg Prime Minister who is chairman of the eurozone group of EU countries.
"Who is in charge?" Mr Farage demanded during a European Parliament debate on the crisis.
"None of you have any democratic legitimacy for the roles you hold. Into this vacuum steps Angela Merkel, and we are now living in a German-dominated Europe, something this European Union was supposed to stop."
He said Europe's leaders had had the Greek Prime Minister "removed and replaced by a puppet government", and then "you decided that Silvio Berlusconi has to go and replaced him with Mario Monti, a former commissioner and fellow architect of this disaster, who is not even a member of parliament".
In a right of reply to the debate, a furious Mr Juncker - stabbing the air with his finger - attacked those he said were using the debate to score points along political lines, and discussing the merits or otherwise of Mrs Merkel and French President Nicolas Sarkozy - the Berlin-Paris duo making the running in the eurozone crisis.
Mr Juncker complained that he had only been given five minutes to respond to points raised by MEPs, some of whom, he said, had used the debate to address areas they wanted to address, and not the issue on the agenda of "economic governance".
Mr Juncker said: "Is this a European parliament, or a parliament of domestic concerns? In which case you don't want to see me here."
Mr Van Rompuy also said he had come to the parliament to talk about "economic governance" in the run-up to another EU summit next month.
He said: "I stuck to that, I told you what we have done and what we are going to do. My task is to find a European-wide consensus and that is the role I endeavour to discharge."