EU chief scraps meetings because driver is COVID-19 positive

January 17, 2022 GMT
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen prepares to make a statement, regarding the death of European Parliament President David Sassoli, at EU headquarters in Brussels, Tuesday, Jan. 11, 2022. David Sassoli, the Italian journalist who worked his way up in politics and became president of the European Union's parliament, died at a hospital in Italy early Tuesday, Jan. 11, 2022 his spokesperson said. (AP Photo/Olivier Matthys, Pool)
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen prepares to make a statement, regarding the death of European Parliament President David Sassoli, at EU headquarters in Brussels, Tuesday, Jan. 11, 2022. David Sassoli, the Italian journalist who worked his way up in politics and became president of the European Union's parliament, died at a hospital in Italy early Tuesday, Jan. 11, 2022 his spokesperson said. (AP Photo/Olivier Matthys, Pool)
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen prepares to make a statement, regarding the death of European Parliament President David Sassoli, at EU headquarters in Brussels, Tuesday, Jan. 11, 2022. David Sassoli, the Italian journalist who worked his way up in politics and became president of the European Union's parliament, died at a hospital in Italy early Tuesday, Jan. 11, 2022 his spokesperson said. (AP Photo/Olivier Matthys, Pool)
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen prepares to make a statement, regarding the death of European Parliament President David Sassoli, at EU headquarters in Brussels, Tuesday, Jan. 11, 2022. David Sassoli, the Italian journalist who worked his way up in politics and became president of the European Union's parliament, died at a hospital in Italy early Tuesday, Jan. 11, 2022 his spokesperson said. (AP Photo/Olivier Matthys, Pool)
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen prepares to make a statement, regarding the death of European Parliament President David Sassoli, at EU headquarters in Brussels, Tuesday, Jan. 11, 2022. David Sassoli, the Italian journalist who worked his way up in politics and became president of the European Union's parliament, died at a hospital in Italy early Tuesday, Jan. 11, 2022 his spokesperson said. (AP Photo/Olivier Matthys, Pool)

BRUSSELS (AP) — European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said Monday that she has canceled her in-person appointments at the European Parliament this week after her driver tested positive for COVID-19.

Von der Leyen said she was already in Strasbourg, France, for the plenary when she was told of the news and immediately headed back to European Union headquarters in Brussels.

She faced a heavy program in Strasbourg over the next three days, including attending a solemn remembrance for David Sassoli, the European Parliament president, who died last week. She was also scheduled to have meetings with French President Emmanuel Macron and preside over the College of EU Commissioners for their weekly meeting.

“Regretfully, I must therefore cancel my participation” to the legislative session, she tweeted.

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