“The actions, or more importantly, the non-actions of the EU’s High Representative for Foreign Relations, Josep Borrell last weekend in Russia have damaged the credibility of the European Union, and there must be consequences,” said Fianna Fáil MEP, Billy Kelleher.

The Ireland South MEP was speaking following what he described as “a weekend of shame” for the European Union’s global credibility

“In the first instance, Mr. Borrell should not have travelled to Moscow. The European Council had not given him the green light to attend, and my political group, Renew Europe, along with many others, urged him not go.

“At the very least not travelling would have demonstrated the EU’s absolute opposition to what, I believe, is the illegal imprisonment of Alexei Navalny.

“To add insult to injury, Mr Borrell staying and taking part in a press conference with the Russian Foreign Minister as EU diplomats were being expelled is simply intolerable.

“It is clear that HR/VP Borrell is quickly losing the confidence of the European Parliament. It must never be forgotten that every EU Commissioner, including the Vice President/High Representative for Foreign Relations, receives their mandate to serve from, and is accountable to, the European Parliament.

“This visit should never have happened. It clearly demonstrated a lack of judgement on the part of Mr Borrell. This must have consequences. Mr Borrell should consider his position and if he fails to do the right thing, the Commission President, Ursula Von Der Leyen should seek his removal,” concluded Kelleher.