“One of the great destroyers of modern times”

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President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker - Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images

Jean-Claude Juncker branded David Cameron “one of the great destroyers of modern times” and said the former British prime minister had banned the European Commission from playing any role in the Brexit referendum campaign.

Speaking to the regional parliament in the German state of Saarland on Monday, the Commission president said: “We know now what the British parliament does not want. But we haven’t yet been able to find out what they do want. In comparison to the British parliament, a sphinx is an open book. We need to get the sphinx talking. We’ve had enough of the long silence.” He used similar language before the European Parliament plenary last week.

“We were forbidden from being present in any way in the referendum campaign by Mr. Cameron, who is one of the great destroyers of modern times. Because he said the Commission is even less popular in the UK than it is in other EU member states.”

“If we had been able to take part in this campaign, we could have asked — and also answered — many questions that are only being asked now.”