The UAE summons EU mission head to protest “racist” comments

The UAE on Monday summoned the acting head of the EU delegation to the UAE, requesting an explanation of what it considered to be racist remarks made last week by EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell.

The UAE foreign ministry described the comments as ‘inappropriate and discriminatory’ and said they ‘contributed to a worsening climate of intolerance and discrimination worldwide,’ UAE state news agency (WAM) reported.

Last week, Borrell’s remarks at the European Diplomatic Academy in Bruges, Belgium, which were extensively distributed online, Borrell referred to Europe as “a garden” and most of the world as a “jungle” that “could invade the garden.”

Borrell, a Spanish politician said that; “The gardeners should take care of the garden, but they will not protect the garden by building walls. A nice small garden surrounded by high walls in order to prevent the jungle coming in is not going to be a solution. Because the jungle has a strong growth capacity, and the wall will never be high enough.”

“The gardeners have to go to the jungle. Europeans have to be much more engaged with the rest of the world. Otherwise, the rest of the world will invade us,” he said.

Borrell said in a press conference on Monday that his message was not racist or colonialist, according to news agency EFE. He opposed the notion of ‘fortress Europe’ and encouraged students to become involved in the world by saying that it was not.

Image Credit: European Parliament