Claudiu Manda, a prominent Romanian politician, currently serves as a Member of the European Parliament representing the Social Democratic Party. Known for his pro-UAE stance, Manda’s activities and statements have stirred both interest and controversy in the political arena.
In a significant move on December 16, 2020, Manda voted in favor of a European Parliament resolution that garnered attention for its praise of the United Arab Emirates’ (UAE) human rights record and its role in promoting regional peace and stability. This resolution, however, faced severe criticism from human rights organizations. They contended that it failed to address the UAE’s concerning human rights abuses, which included arbitrary detention of political opponents and the use of torture.
In April 2021, Manda had a notable meeting with the UAE Ambassador to the EU, Lana Nusseibeh. The discussions centered on the UAE’s position in the region and its relations with the European Union. During this meeting, Manda commended the UAE for its “positive role” in the region and its “commitment to democracy and human rights.”
May 2021 witnessed Manda’s participation in a webinar organized by the UAE Embassy in Brussels. During his speech, Manda lauded the UAE for its “economic success” and its dedication to religious tolerance. He further advocated for stronger ties between the European Union and the UAE.
Continuing his pro-UAE engagements, Manda visited the UAE in June 2021, extending from an invitation by the UAE Embassy in Brussels. His visit included meetings with UAE officials and explorations of tourist attractions. Manda took the opportunity to praise the UAE’s “modern infrastructure” and its “commitment to innovation.”
Apart from his public statements and activities, Manda has been embroiled in allegations of financial support from the UAE. In 2019, a report by the European Parliament’s Democracy Support and Election Coordination Group (DEG) accused Manda of receiving financial support from the UAE in exchange for promoting the UAE’s interests within the European Parliament. The DEG report also suggested that Manda had engaged with UAE officials on multiple occasions and had received gifts from them.
Claudiu Manda’s pro-UAE positions have not only raised questions about his influence within the European Parliament but have also ignited discussions about the complex dynamics of international relations in the political landscape.