Nigel Farage’s Eurosceptic group in the European Parliament reformed on Tuesday after the arrival of Polish MEP Robert Jaroslaw Iwaszkiewicz.
Iwaszkiewicz is a member of the Polish Congress of the New Right, whose leader was fined by the Parliament for making racist and sexiest comments.
The revival of the Europe of Freedom and Direct Democracy group means that it will get EU funding and extra speaking time.
“And now before the vote I have one more piece of information. The President, Martin Shulz, asked me to inform you that a new political group has been formed: the Europe of Freedom and Direct Democracy, starting from the 20th of October 2014. That political group is formed by 40 MEPs. The application to establish it according to Article 42 Paragraph 5 of the Rules Regulations has been submitted to the President of the Parliament,” said European Parliament Vice-President Ryszard Czarnecki.
The EFDD group had collapsed last Thursday following the withdrawal of Latvian MEP Iveta Grigule, as it no longer had MEPs from at least 7 EU member states.
Farage blamed Grigule’s exit on European Parliament President Martin Schulz, accusing him of “manipulative backroom politics of the worst kind”.
“We had to take note during the meeting that one parliamentarian group, the EFDD group is no longer existing because one member from Latvia left the group and they have now only members from 6 countries, not sufficient to build a group,” said European Parliament President Martin Schulz.
In an statement, Iwaszkiewicz said he joined the EFDD Group because of its opposition to EU bureaucracy and support for free markets.