Corruption scandal “Qatargate” may also affect the main executive body of the EU, reports “Khabar 24”. Recall that Doha is already suspected of illegally influencing the decisions of the European Parliament through bribing deputies. Now it has become known that the head of the European Commission’s directorate for transport and mobility, Henrik Hololei, traveled to Qatar several times at the expense of his government. Business class flights by Qatar Airways took place from 2015 to 2021.
At the same time, the time of the visits of the European official coincides with the negotiations on an agreement on air traffic between the EU and Qatar. Therefore, the European Ombudsman Emily O’Reilly demanded a detailed report on the travel of European Commission staff. However, they said Hololey’s travel checks “ruled out any conflicts of interest” as he was not part of the air transport negotiating delegation.
Dana Spinant, representative of the European Commission:
Individual analysis of the activities of a high-ranking official
The European Commission, who made several business trips paid for by Qatar, was held to prove that in these specific circumstances it was not a conflict of interest. We are now working on a revision of the guidelines and we are going to inform all directors, general directorates as a matter of urgency and invite them to start implementing these stricter rules very soon.