Roberta Metsola: The European Parliament’s new President immediately faced questions on her views on abortion
Metsola, who was voted into the post on her 43rd birthday, had served as the Parliament’s vice-president since 2020 and was elected comfortably in Tuesday’s leadership vote, winning the support of 458 of the group’s 705 MEPs.
“I will stand against anybody who wants to destroy the European project,” Metsola said at the first news conference following her victory, as she also batted back repeated questions over her position on abortion.
Her election on Tuesday drew anger from some on the Parliament’s left, with the Federation of Young European Greens writing on Twitter: “This is not progress.”
Metsola is the first woman to hold the presidency in two decades, following seven men. The previous leader, Sassoli, died aged 65 last week following a serious complication due to a dysfunction of his immune system.
“Your hard work & determination are an inspiration to us all. We’ll work closely together for the EU’s recovery and a green, digital & bright European future,” EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen tweeted after Metsola’s victory.
“My warmest congratulations to Roberta Metsola as new President of the European Parliament,” President of the European Council Charles Michel added.
“The European Parliament is the beating heart of our European democracy. Looking forward to cooperating with you, dear Roberta,” he said.