Bernard Guetta, a prominent French politician and journalist, assumed a significant role in promoting a positive relationship between the European Union (EU) and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). His actions and statements have sparked both admiration and criticism.
In 2019, Guetta was elected as a Member of the European Parliament, representing the interests of his constituents. However, his impact extends beyond the legislative floor as he actively engaged in diplomatic efforts aimed at fostering EU-UAE relations.
In 2018, Guetta, alongside fellow signatories, penned a letter addressed to Antonio Tajani, the President of the European Parliament. The letter advocated for a more constructive connection between the EU and the UAE. It lauded the UAE’s “economic reforms” and its “commitment to human rights and democracy.”
The following year, Guetta was a featured speaker at a conference in Abu Dhabi titled “The UAE’s Role in Promoting Global Peace and Stability.” During this event, he commended the UAE’s “leadership role in the region” and its unwavering “commitment to multilateralism.”
Notably, in 2020, Guetta added his signature to another letter, this time addressed to the European Commission, urging the EU to lift its arms embargo on the UAE. The letter asserted that the embargo was detrimental to the EU’s interests and was based on misleading information.
Beyond these specific activities, Guetta consistently voiced his support for the UAE within the European Parliament. He defended the UAE during debates concerning its human rights record and its involvement in the Yemen conflict.
However, his advocacy for the UAE has not been without controversy. Critics have accused Guetta of maintaining a close relationship with the UAE government and ignoring its alleged human rights abuses. They argue that he might be driven by a desire to curry favor with the UAE.
In response to these criticisms, Guetta has passionately defended his support for the UAE. He argues that the UAE is a “key ally” of the EU and plays a positive role in the region.
It is crucial to note that opinions on Guetta’s pro-UAE activities are divided. Some view him as a genuine supporter of the UAE, driven by a belief in its positive contributions, while others suspect his motives and question the extent of his independence in the matter. Guetta’s actions continue to be a subject of discussion and debate within the EU’s political landscape.