COVID contact means Michel can’t be at EU parliament session

January 19, 2022 GMT
European flags are pictured outside the European Parliament Wednesday, Jan. 19, 2022 in Strasbourg, eastern France. (AP Photo/Jean-Francois Badias)
European flags are pictured outside the European Parliament Wednesday, Jan. 19, 2022 in Strasbourg, eastern France. (AP Photo/Jean-Francois Badias)
European flags are pictured outside the European Parliament Wednesday, Jan. 19, 2022 in Strasbourg, eastern France. (AP Photo/Jean-Francois Badias)
European flags are pictured outside the European Parliament Wednesday, Jan. 19, 2022 in Strasbourg, eastern France. (AP Photo/Jean-Francois Badias)
European flags are pictured outside the European Parliament Wednesday, Jan. 19, 2022 in Strasbourg, eastern France. (AP Photo/Jean-Francois Badias)

BRUSSELS (AP) — European Council President Charles Michel on Wednesday became the second top-level European Union official who has had to pull out of the bloc’s parliament session because of contact with someone who tested positive for the coronavirus.

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen already canceled her attendance on Monday.

Michel said “I have been informed that I was in close contact with someone who tested positive,” Michel said. “Therefore I will not be able to attend” the parliamentary session, where he was to brief legislators on the EU summit in December and issues like the pandemic and the standoff in Ukraine.

He didn’t provide details. Von der Leyen canceled her in-person appointments at the European Parliament after her driver tested positive for COVID-19.

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Both were supposed to be in Strasbourg, France, on Wednesday, as President Emmanuel Macron would address the plenary on the plans during France’s tenure of the EU presidency, which runs through June.

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