Editions:  Austria · Denmark · France · Germany · Italy · Norway · Spain · Sweden · Switzerland
Advertisement

Former EU Parliament chief Nicole Fontaine dies at 76

Share this article

Former EU Parliament chief Nicole Fontaine dies at 76
Nicole Fontaine giving a speech in Paris in March 2000. Photo: Georges Gobet/AFP
04:45 CEST+02:00
French former European Parliament chief Nicole Fontaine has died at the age of 76, officials said on Friday, with President Emmanuel Macron hailing her decades-long "fight for the European project".
Fontaine, a centre-right former lawyer who led the EU assembly from 1999 to 2002, was the second woman to hold the post after former French minister, Holocaust survivor and rights icon Simone Veil.
 
She died on Thursday, former minister Dominique Bussereau said.
 
"For 35 years of her life, she fought for the European project," Macron said in a statement.
 
Born in Fecamp on the northern French coast, Fontaine was an MEP from 1984 until the end of her time as parliament chief and also served as France's industrial minister between 2002 and 2004.
 
A 1999 profile by The Economist described her as "a consensus-seeker, coalition-builder, conciliator... nowhere more at home than in the byzantine corridors of Europe, canvassing cross-party support, flashing her smile, teasing out compromise".
 
After Britain's shock referendum vote in 2016 in favour of leaving the EU, Fontaine declared that she was unsurprised by the result, describing Europe as "sick with a democratic deficit".
Get notified about breaking news on The Local

Share this article

Become a Member or sign-in to leave a comment.
Advertisement

From our sponsors

12 unexpected facts you probably didn't know about Iceland

Iceland has long been known as one of the most beautiful places in the world, but over the past few years it has also come to be viewed as a rather unusual hotbed of football talent. Here are 12 other things that you might not know about Iceland.

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement