A train carrying European lawmakers made a surprise detour, ending up at a station servicing a theme park in Paris
A French train that was chartered by the European Parliament to transport MEPs and other officials on Monday, briefly ended up at the Disneyland Paris stop. Trains reserved exclusively for MEPs are regularly contracted by the European Parliament to shuttle legislators between its split seat in Brussels, Belgium and Strasbourg in eastern France.
The train, operated by French railway company SNCF took an unscheduled turn, heading towards the French capital and ending up at the Marne-la-Vallee station, which services Europe’s Disneyland theme park. The detour, apparently caused by a track-switching error, resulted in a 45-minute delay.
The accident was widely acknowledged by legislators and parliament officials on social media, with some of them apparently enjoying the delay. Some expressed regret they were not allowed off the train to roam the theme park, while others made tongue-in-cheek comments about the blunder.
“We are NOT a Mickey Mouse Parliament,” German lawmaker Daniel Freund wrote on social media platform X (formerly Twitter).
— Samira Rafaela (@samiraraf) October 16, 2023
The Disneyland debacle did not escape the European Parliament’s critics either, who didn’t miss the opportunity to poke fun at the body, suggesting the whole affair was a great metaphor perfectly reflecting the current state of the European legislature.
“The image of the EU Parliament as a peripatetic circus getting more real by the hour,” said Alberto Alemanno, a public-interest lawyer and activist behind The Good Lobby NGO, which advocates better accountability for the body.
October 17, 2023 at 01:50AM