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Updated: 2 hours 36 min ago

Mercosur trade deal will fuel 'poison pesticides' back into EU

Tue, 05/11/2021 - 07:02
The EU-Mercosur trade agreement, as it stands, would exacerbate the 'boomerang effect' of pesticides banned in the EU re-entering the bloc on food imports.
Categories: European Union

[Opinion] Can new Iran talks avoid mistakes of the original JCPOA?

Tue, 05/11/2021 - 07:02
The question remains whether the EU can take advantage of the latest talks, and other shifts in the Middle East, to reverse its own diplomatic marginalisation.
Categories: European Union

[Ticker] Lukashenko amends emergency transfer of power

Mon, 05/10/2021 - 07:27
Belarusian president Alexander Lukashenko has signed a decree allowing the transfer of presidential power to the security council if he is murdered or otherwise unable to perform his duties, Reuters reports. Lukashenko said in April he was planning to change the way power in Belarus was set up. Previously, if the president's position became vacant, power would be transferred to the prime minister until a new president took oath.
Categories: European Union

[Ticker] German centre-left picks Scholz as would-be chancellor

Mon, 05/10/2021 - 07:26
German finance minister Olaf Scholz is to be the centre-left SPD party's candidate for chancellor in September's elections, after more 96 percent of 600 party delegates backed him Sunday. The former Hamburg mayor has campaigned on climate neutrality, a €12/hour minimum wage, and more investment in the healthcare sector. The SPD is currently on 16 percent in polls, behind the Greens (26 percent) and the centre-right CDU/CSU bloc (23 percent).
Categories: European Union

[Ticker] EU has not ordered AstraZeneca vaccines beyond June

Mon, 05/10/2021 - 07:26
The European Union has not made any new orders for AstraZeneca vaccines beyond June when their contract ends, European internal market commissioner Thierry Breton said, after the EU signed a deal with Pfizer-BioNTech, the Irish Times reports. The Commission last month launched legal action against AstraZeneca for not respecting its contract for the supply of Covid-19 vaccines and for not having a "reliable" plan to ensure timely deliveries.
Categories: European Union

[Ticker] Macron: Pandemic showed need for more EU integration

Mon, 05/10/2021 - 07:19
EU institutions needed to take more powers from national capitals, for instance, in the health sector, the pandemic has showed, according to French president Emmanuel Macron, speaking on Sunday. "We need to learn the lessons given this major shock of the pandemic; we need to beef up our common capacity," he said. "We've noted, oftentimes, that Europe wasn't moving forward quickly enough, was lacking ambition," he added.
Categories: European Union

[Ticker] Election win fuels Scottish nationalists' referendum plan

Mon, 05/10/2021 - 07:19
Scottish leader Nicola Sturgeon has vowed to hold a second independence referendum after the pandemic, after her Scottish Nationalist Party won a fourth consecutive term in power and increased its number of seats in elections last weekend. Only a court ruling could stop the referendum, she noted. But talk of "ripping our country apart" would be "irresponsible and reckless", British prime minister Boris Johnson said.
Categories: European Union

[Ticker] Surge in migrant arrivals to Italian island

Mon, 05/10/2021 - 07:13
More than 1,000 migrants arrived on the small Italian island of Lampedusa on Saturday amid good weather for sea crossings, prompting fresh political tension. The arrivals mean some 11,000 people have come to Lampedusa so far this year, up from 4,105 in the same period last year. "With millions of Italians in difficulty, we cannot think of thousands of illegal immigrants," Italy's xenophobic former deputy PM Matteo Salvini said.
Categories: European Union

[Ticker] EU embassy pays bail for Georgia opposition leader

Mon, 05/10/2021 - 07:13
The EU embassy in Tbilisi has posted €9,600 bail for Nika Melia, a jailed opposition leader, in order "to allow for [his] release from pre-trial detention", it said Saturday. The unusual move came after police arrested Melia in February on charges linked to pro-democracy protests, sparking a crisis between his UNM opposition party and the ruling Georgian Dream party, which is controlled by Russia-friendly billionaire Bidzina Ivanishvili.
Categories: European Union

[Ticker] British aristocrats caught peddling Kremlin ties

Mon, 05/10/2021 - 07:12
Prince Michael of Kent, a minor British royal, and his associate, the Marquess of Reading, have been peddling their alleged influence in Russia in return for fees of €11,000 a day to foreign companies, according to an investigation by The Times newspaper and Channel 4 broadcaster. The marquess told a South Korean firm, for instance, the prince was the Queen's "unofficial ambassador to Russia" and could secure Kremlin contracts.
Categories: European Union

EU and US urge Israel to defuse Jerusalem violence

Mon, 05/10/2021 - 07:08
The EU and US have voiced alarm over growing violence in Jerusalem, while urging Israel to curb settlement expansion.
Categories: European Union

[Feature] Frontex 'mislabelling minors as adults' on Greek islands

Mon, 05/10/2021 - 07:04
Lawyers in Greece accuse Frontex of incorrectly labeling minors as 'adults', a violation. Among them was 17-year old William, sent to the adult section of Moria, where he says he was abused. He was later able to prove his age.
Categories: European Union

[Opinion] Has Albania really met the 15 tests to join the EU? No

Mon, 05/10/2021 - 07:04
While I welcome Albania's EU integration, it is questionable whether they have fulfilled all the conditions. It surprises me that the commission claims that Albania already has; to whitewash inconvenient facts will not help neither Albania, nor the EU.
Categories: European Union

[Agenda] Vaccine fairness plus Russia on table This WEEK

Mon, 05/10/2021 - 07:04
Attention will return to vaccines, after US president Joe Biden put the EU in a tight spot when he backed waiving the Covid-19 vaccine patent.
Categories: European Union

EU ambassadors flock to Red Square for Putin's parade

Sat, 05/08/2021 - 15:20
Most EU states are sending their ambassadors to Russia's WW2 victory parade on Sunday despite tense relations.
Categories: European Union

MEPs win battle for bigger citizens' voice at Conference

Fri, 05/07/2021 - 16:28
After long negotiations, the European Parliament finally managed to convince EU member states and the European Commission of the need to include citizens proposals in the outcome of the conference.
Categories: European Union

[Exclusive] Hungary gags EU ministers on China

Fri, 05/07/2021 - 15:35
EU countries have shelved plans to issue a statement of moral support for pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong - due to Hungary's veto. Hungary is a major beneficiary of Chinese investment, including the building of a new university in Budapest.
Categories: European Union

Poland and Hungary push back on 'gender equality' pre-summit

Fri, 05/07/2021 - 14:53
The latest compromise is part of a trend within the EU, with usually Hungary and Poland pushing for "gender equality" to be deleted from different EU texts - causing worry among other member states.
Categories: European Union

[Ticker] Report: Czech minister plotted to bury evidence on Russian attack

Fri, 05/07/2021 - 07:37
Jan Hamáček, the Czech interior minister, who was also interim foreign minister in April, hatched a plan to bury evidence that Russia blew up a Czech arms warehouse in 2014, in return for 1m doses of Russia's coronavirus vaccine and letting Prague host a Russia-US summit, according to government sources speaking to news outlet Seznam Zprávy. Hamáček called the report "complete nonsense" and said was suing for €390,000 in damages.
Categories: European Union

[Ticker] Putin promotes Russia's 'Kalashnikov-like' vaccine

Fri, 05/07/2021 - 07:28
Russia's Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine was as "reliable as a Kalashnikov assault rifle", Russian president Vladimir Putin said on Thursday, in a video-conference with deputy prime minister Tatyana Golikova. The European Medicines Agency is still studying Sputnik V safety prior to EU-wide approval. Hungary has started to use it. But Germany and the Czech Republic have rowed back on previous enthusiasm to give the jab to their nationals.
Categories: European Union

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