Politics

Juncker returns! Brexit villain makes stunning comeback as ex-EU chief takes legal role

Nigel Farage admits he 'got on well' with Jean-Claude Juncker

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Mr Juncker, who was the former President of the European Commission, has now been appointed as President to the Governing Board of the Academy of European Law (ERA). Mr Juncker will succeed Jacques Santer, who served as President of the ERA for 21 years. The former EU official, who served as President of the Commission for five years, left frontline politics two years ago but expressed his pleasure at following in the footsteps of his fellow Luxembourgian.

He said: “It’s a great honour for me to take over the leadership of the ERA Foundation.

“I’m particularly pleased to take on this role because, as finance minister of Luxembourg in the early nineties, I worked intensively to support the establishment of ERA.

“I have succeeded Jacques Santer in a number of roles in my career and now it is a pleasure for me to complete the circle by leading this good-functioning Academy that I worked towards setting up all those years ago.”

While Mr Juncker has retreated from frontline politics, earlier this year he revealed his true feelings on Brexit and the crucial negotiations which followed.

Indeed, speaking to The i, Mr Juncker claimed he should have not listened to David Cameron.

Instead, the former Brussels official claimed he had made a mistake in not coming to the UK to outline the EU’s stance on Brexit.

Mr Juncker claimed the then Prime Minister had told him “not to interfere”, something he regrets doing.

Mr Juncker also stated the UK never felt comfortable within the EU.

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He said: “To tell the truth, the British never felt at ease in the EU.

“When you tell your people for years, decades, ‘Yes, we are part of it, but not really.

“‘We are part-time Europeans,’ then you can’t be surprised when you ask their opinion and discover that a small majority of them believe Britain could do better outside the EU.”

He also criticised some of the characterisations of the EU by some in the UK.

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Mr Juncker added: “This brainwashing – sometimes populist, sometimes demagogic, sometimes planned – against the EU meant that British people voted for Brexit.

“I always respect the sovereign decision, but it was ahistorical.

“It went against the course of history.”

Earlier this year, Mr Juncker did claim the EU’s threat to intervene over vaccine exports was a “stupid vaccine war”.

Mr Juncker told BBC HARDtalk: “I don’t think that this is the right way… we have to pull back from a vaccine war.

“Nobody in Britain, nobody in Europe, understands why we are witnessing such, according to me, stupid vaccines war.

“We are not in a war, and we are not enemies, we are allies.”

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