Odd bedfellows

When it comes to European Union affairs much attention has naturally been focused on David Cameron as he battles unsuccessfully to prevent Jean-Claude Juncker from becoming president of the European Commission.

However, little attention seems to have been paid to the unusual bedfellows with whom the UK’s 19 Tory MEPs are allies in the European Conservatives and Reformist Group in the European Parliament.

The Tory MEPs have been joined by four MEPs from the New Flemish Alliance (N-VA), a party seeking independence for Belgium’s northern region of Flanders within the European Union.

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And one of the biggest supporters of this party is London mayor, Boris Johnson. Formed in 2001, this centre-right party is economically liberal, big on green issues and advocates sole use of the Dutch language in Flanders.

It is clearly more than a little hypocritical for the Tories to be in formal alliance with a party that advocates independence for Flanders from Belgium when they themselves are opposing Scottish independence, despite only having one MP north of the Border.

Alex Orr

Leamington Terrace

Edinburgh