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Updated: 1 hour 43 min ago

[Ticker] EU postpones decision on labelling gas 'sustainable'

Fri, 04/16/2021 - 11:23
The European Commission has decided to postpose the decision on whether to label natural gas as a "sustainable investment", under the EU classification for sustainable finance, Reuters reported on Thursday. Member states remain divided on the role of gas in cutting emissions, while experts urge Brussels to resist political pressure and listen to science. A separate proposal addressing gas and nuclear is expected now in the fourth quarter.
Categories: European Union

[Ticker] MEPs call for mass surveillance ban in EU public spaces

Fri, 04/16/2021 - 11:09
A cross-party group of 40 MEPs called on Thursday on the European Commission to ban biometric identification technology in public spaces. A leak of the forthcoming EU artificial intelligence (AI) regulation states systems used for "indiscriminate surveillance" would be prohibited in the EU. However, this would not apply to public authorities when justified "in order to safeguard public security". The legislative proposal is expected to be published next week.
Categories: European Union

[Ticker] Greek and Turkish ministers trade jibes in Ankara

Fri, 04/16/2021 - 09:10
"You come out here, and try to accuse Turkey, to give a message to your country. It is not possible for me to accept this," Turkish foreign minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu told Greek foreign minister Nikos Dendias in Ankara Thursday, at a meeting designed to mend relations. Dendias had accused Turkish warplanes of violating Greek airspace and of spreading "fake news" over their confrontation on Turkish gas-drilling in Greek-claimed waters.
Categories: European Union

[Ticker] Biden repeats opposition to Russia-Germany pipeline

Fri, 04/16/2021 - 09:07
US president Joe Biden has reiterated his enmity to Russian-German gas pipeline Nord Stream 2. "I've been opposed to Nord Stream 2 for a long time ... that issue is still in play," he said Thursday, amid US sanctions threats. "The only way Germany will give up Nord Stream 2 is if the GRU [Russian intelligence] breaks into the Bundestag and crucifies [German chancellor Angela] Merkel," an EU diplomat joked.
Categories: European Union

US rejects Slovenia-linked plan to break up Bosnia

Fri, 04/16/2021 - 07:24
The US has said it is against the break-up of Bosnia, following a radical proposal widely attributed to incoming EU presidency Slovenia.
Categories: European Union

Ukraine urges Borrell to visit Russia front line

Fri, 04/16/2021 - 07:24
Ukraine has invited EU foreign relations chief Josep Borrell to visit its front line with Russia, in what one EU diplomat said would be his "best revenge" for his recent humiliation in Moscow.
Categories: European Union

[Ticker] Navalny in danger, letter warns EU foreign ministers

Fri, 04/16/2021 - 07:24
Russian opposition figure Alexei Navalny is suffering from "multiple hernias and protrusions in his spine" and a "heavy cough and fevers", which could indicate tuberculosis, but he is being denied outside medical attention, while prison doctors give him basic painkillers, his associates said in a letter to EU foreign ministers meeting Monday. Concerns for his safety should be "one of the focal points" of the ministers' discussions, they added.
Categories: European Union

[Ticker] Lithuania keen to use Denmark's AstraZeneca vaccines

Fri, 04/16/2021 - 07:24
Lithuania has said it wanted any AstraZeneca vaccines that Denmark did not need, after Denmark stopped its use over blood-clotting concerns. "Regretfully, we still have fewer vaccines than people willing to be vaccinated," Lithuanian prime minister Ingrida Šimonytė said on Thursday. "Therefore, Lithuania has expressed readiness to take as many doses of AatraZeneca as Denmark is ready to share," she added.
Categories: European Union

[Ticker] Gas plants largest source of power-sector emissions

Fri, 04/16/2021 - 07:23
An analysis of the EU Emissions Trading System, the bloc's carbon market, published on Friday by energy think tank Ember shows that Europe's gas plants released 231m tonnes of carbon dioxide in 2020. Gas has become the single largest source of power-sector emissions, overtaking for the first time those from lignite (brown coal) power plants. Power sector emissions fell by 17 percent in 2020, compared to 2019.
Categories: European Union

Could US sanctions hit Russia vaccine sales to EU?

Fri, 04/16/2021 - 07:23
The US has indicated it will not interfere with EU imports of Russia's coronavirus vaccine - despite its links to chemical-weapons crimes.
Categories: European Union

[Ticker] Study: Higher risk of blood clots from Covid than vaccines

Fri, 04/16/2021 - 07:23
British researchers said on Thursday that the risk of brain blood clots from Covid-19 is much higher than from the vaccines, Reuters reported. A study examining 500,000 coronavirus patients found these very rare blood clots had occurred at a rate of 39 out of a million people following infection. By comparison, European Medicines Agency figures indicate that five in a million people reported blood clots after getting AstraZeneca.
Categories: European Union

[Ticker] EU Parliament committees back Brexit trade deal

Fri, 04/16/2021 - 07:23
The European Parliament's foreign affairs and trade committees on Thursday voted in favour of the future trade and cooperation agreement between the EU and the UK. But the full plenary still needs to approve it, and adopt a separate resolution, at a future plenary session. MEPs suspended the voting in March, arguing that British unilateral changes to trading arrangements in Northern Ireland breach the terms of the Brexit agreement.
Categories: European Union

Polish court pushes out critical ombudsman

Fri, 04/16/2021 - 07:22
The controversial Constitutional Tribunal ruled that legislation, setting out that the ombudsman stays in office until lawmakers pick a new one, was unconstitutional.
Categories: European Union

Political crises in Romania and Bulgaria amid third wave

Fri, 04/16/2021 - 07:22
Bulgaria's prime minister Boyko Borissov resigned and the Romanian government is in danger of collapsing while the third wave of the pandemic is hitting both countries hard.
Categories: European Union

Von der Leyen's summer plans undisclosed, after Ukraine snub

Fri, 04/16/2021 - 07:22
Ukraine's president invited EU Commission president Ursula von der Leyen to independence celebrations end of August. Citing a busy schedule, her subordinate said 'no' in an unsent letter. Asked what is on her agenda, the commission can't say.
Categories: European Union

[Ticker] WHO: Europe passes one million Covid-19 deaths

Fri, 04/16/2021 - 07:21
More than one million people have died from Covid-19 in Europe, Hans Kluge, Europe director the World Health Organization announced on Thursday, Deutsche Welle reports. Across the world, more than three million people have died from Covid-19. Kluge warned that the situation remains "serious," with about 1.6 million new cases reported each week in the region.
Categories: European Union

[Ticker] Biden sanctions Russia for US election interference

Fri, 04/16/2021 - 07:21
The Biden administration has announced the expulsion of 10 Russian diplomats and broad sanctions against Russian officials and companies in retaliation for Moscow's interference in elections and cyber-espionage campaigns, The Guardian writes. "I have determined that specified harmful foreign activities of the [Russian] government … constitute an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security, foreign policy, and economy of the United States," Biden wrote in a letter to Congress.
Categories: European Union

Over a million EU citizens back farm-animal cage ban

Fri, 04/16/2021 - 07:21
More than 1.4 million Europeans have called on the European Commission to ban keeping farmed animals in cages - arguing the practice is cruel and unnecessary.
Categories: European Union

[Opinion] Three options for West on Putin's Ukraine build-up

Fri, 04/16/2021 - 07:20
As Russian troops gather near Ukraine's eastern border, the international community has pondered an important question. Will Russia launch a new offensive into Ukraine?
Categories: European Union

[Ticker] Olympic Games could be scrapped, Japanese official says

Thu, 04/15/2021 - 07:22
Toshihiro Nikai, the long-serving secretary general of Japan's ruling Liberal Democratic party, said that cancelling this year's Olympic Games could be an option if coronavirus infections continued to rise, Deutsche Welle writes. The comments come less than 24 hours after International Olympic Committee (IOC) vice president John Coates told reporters that cancellation is "certainly not" on the table.
Categories: European Union

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