October 10, 2017 — Monsanto lobbyists have been banned from the European parliament as governmental leaders debate whether to extend the approval license for Roundup.
Monsanto will not longer be allowed to meet with members of parliament, attend committee meetings, or parliamentary inquiries.
Members of the European parliament (MEPs) were reportedly outraged at Monsanto for refusing to attend a hearing into the company’s manipulation of safety assessments regarding the cancer risks of Roundup (glyphosate).
This is the first time MEPs have used the new rules to block a company from parliament for ignoring a summons. Green party president Philippe Lamberts told The Guardian:
“Those who ignore the rules of democracy also lose their rights as a lobbyist in the European parliament … U.S. corporations must also accept the democratic control function of the parliament. Monsanto cannot escape this.”
The European Commission’s environmental and agricultural committees set up a hearing on October 11 to review evidence that Monsanto unduly influenced the conclusions of safety studies.
The European Commission used those studies to approve glyphosate sales to farmers and home-gardeners — but they did not know that Monsanto was behind the studies until lawyers in the U.S. released evidence as part of lawsuits for people with cancer.
Monsanto’s ban from parliament could not come at a worse time for the U.S.-based chemical company. The European Commission delayed extending a 15-year license for glyphosate so they could evaluate evidence linking it with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
In June 2016, the European Commission agreed to extend the license for another 18 months. They are expected to vote by the end of 2017 on whether to re-license glyphosate for another 10 years.
France and several member-states of the European Union have already announced that they will vote against re-licensing glyphosate. France has already banned sales of Roundup in home-garden centers and will likely ban the agricultural use as well.
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