EU's Jean-Claude Juncker stumbled at NATO gala because of 'sciatica attack'

EU's Jean-Claude Juncker stumbled at NATO gala because of 'sciatica attack'

During the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit in Brussels European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker had serious back problems, so he could hardly stand on his feet.

Juncker was seen unsteady on his feet at a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit event - to the extent where the prime ministers of the Netherlands and Portugal had to prop him up - before having to be helped away in a wheelchair.

"The president on Wednesday night suffered from a very particularly painful attack of sciatica accompanied by cramps", Margaritis Schinas said. Some politicians rushed to help, with Macedonian Prime Minister Zoran Zaev, as well as Portugal's Antonio Costa propping up the troubled 63-year-old official as he went down the stairs. "I don't think this is elegant, I don't think this is fair", he said.

One of the journalists asked whether the cadet in a state of intoxication during the event at the summit that Schinas said: "I think more than insensitive, that some of the media trying to give offensive headers using a painful condition of the cadets". The former prime minister of Luxembourg has blamed sciatica in the past too. Yesterday, US President Donald Trump threatened the European Union with taxes on its vehicle exports to the US if the bloc fails to play fair on trade.

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'The president has himself publicly stated that this sciatica affects his ability to walk. "This was unfortunately the case on Wednesday night", the spokesperson said during the midday briefing. "He is taking medication and feels better".

He has said that he will not run for a second term as Commission president but the obvious question now is whether he is he able to complete his term, which ends in autumn 2019.

The European Commission said on Wednesday (11 July) that "all possible options" are on the table to respond to the confirmation of the U.S. tariffs on Spanish ripe olives, seen by the Europeans as "not justified".

An incident where he referred to Hungarian president Viktor Orban as "the dictator" but kissing him is amongst erratic behaviour which has fuelled the rumours.

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