1. It is clearly not possible to deny that the European Union has historically been cooperating with autocratic rulers in the Middle East. Regimes such as that of Mubarak’s in Egypt have enjoyed the EU’s financial support over the past 30 years. On 11 February, following several days of protests and violence, Hosni Mubarak stepped down. In a joint statement Van Rompuy and Barroso and Ashton welcomed Mubarak’s decision to stand down, calling for “an orderly and irreversible transition towards democracy and for free and fair elections” and reiterated the EU’s willingness “to help with all its instruments.” Moreover, they pointed out “The preservation of regional peace and stability should remain our shared priority.”
The European Foundation has published a briefing highlighting the European Union hypocrisy over Egyptian regime – the discrepancy between generous EU funding and demands for democratisation.