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Europe Politics

[This Day] Abuja -The federal government has listed various factors fuelling irregular migration from Nigeria to Europe and other destinations.
allafrica.com | 12/28/17
2017 has been a full year for the EU, and for EURACTIV. Shortly after our announcement of the EURACTIV rebranding, we rolled out eight Policy Hubs: Politics,  Global Europe, Economy & Jobs, Agriculture & Food, Health, Energy & Environment, Digital and Transport. Here are the most read articles in each Policy Hub: POLITICS A. C. […]
www.euractiv.com | 12/22/17

LONDON – Pro-European campaigners accused ministers of failing to take preparations for Brexit seriously enough on Thursday, after a committee of lawmakers published the government’s sector-by-sector analysis...

www.nationnews.com | 12/21/17
European Union ambassadors have urged Romania's government not to undermine the independence of the legal system amid a contentious overhaul of judicial laws.
www.foxnews.com | 12/21/17
European Commission head Jean-Claude Juncker said Tuesday (19 December) he had no bias against Austria's new government, which includes a far-right party, adding it would be judged on its actions. European Council counterpart Donald Tusk also withheld criticism.
www.euractiv.com | 12/20/17
[Ethiopian Herald] The European Union Mission to Ethiopia said it is closely working with the government of Ethiopia to improve the Human Rights situation in the country.
allafrica.com | 12/19/17
There has been nothing clear about the government’s strategies for leaving the European Union. It may not even have any.
www.nytimes.com | 12/19/17
The new chancellor, Sebastian Kurz, is now Europe’s youngest leader after joining forces with the Freedom Party, founded by neo-Nazis after World War II.
www.nytimes.com | 12/18/17
Europe's far-right leaders including Marine Le Pen and Geert Wilders on Saturday (16 December) hailed as "historic" the government coalition deal struck by their Austrian Freedom Party (FPÖ) peer with the conservatives.
www.euractiv.com | 12/18/17

BERLIN — The new Austrian government led by a conservative and a nationalist party is pledging to tighten the country's asylum and immigration regulations while maintaining a firm commitment to the European Union, according to their coalition agreement released Saturday.

Conservative and nationalist parties in Austria say they have reached a deal on creating a new coalition government that will make 31-year-old Sebastian Kurz the new chancellor and Europe's youngest leader.
www.foxnews.com | 12/15/17
Europe’s second-highest court has rejected a request from the U.S. government to intervene...
macdailynews.com | 12/15/17
Migration was confirmed to be the most divisive issue in European politics at the final 2017 EU summit. The Visegrad group (Poland, Hungary, Czech Republic and Slovakia) will pay €35 million, but calling this “solidarity” is ludicrous.
www.euractiv.com | 12/15/17
Mongolia needs to take action at "all levels of government" to get itself removed from a European Union blacklist of tax havens, its foreign minister said, following talks with European counterparts.
www.euractiv.com | 12/14/17
Nearly three months after the elections, Merkel is struggling to form a government. Seen by many as an anchor of stability in Europe, Merkel needs to deliver, but her preferred partners at the SPD are biding their time.
www.dw.com | 12/14/17

BRUSSELS — Venezuela's democratic opposition and its political prisoners have received the European Union's Sakharov Prize for human rights.

The European Parliament said Wednesday that it wanted to reward the courage of students and politicians who are fighting for freedom in the face of a repressive government.

Thailand's military junta has welcomed the European Union's decision to ease political sanctions imposed against it for overthrowing an elected government in 2014.
www.foxnews.com | 12/12/17

BERLIN — German Chancellor Angela Merkel pushed Monday for quick movement toward a new governing alliance with the main center-left party, saying that only such a coalition will bring the "stable government" needed at a challenging time for Europe.

Merkel stressed her interest in bolstering European unity and suggested that it could underpin a new "grand coalition" of Germany's biggest parties — her own conservative Union bloc and the center-left Social Democrats.

NASSAU – The Bahamas government Wednesday said it will table several pieces of legislation aimed at preventing the country from being placed on the European Union’s list of non-cooperative jurisdictions...

www.nationnews.com | 12/7/17
[ISS] When French President Emmanuel Macron was elected earlier this year he became the youngest-ever French head of state at the age of 39. He didn't hail from any established political party and was seen as bringing a whole new approach to politics in Europe.
allafrica.com | 12/6/17
The European Commission will unveil a raft of ideas to reform the eurozone today (6 December), despite the resistance of powerful Germany, which remains without a government.
www.euractiv.com | 12/6/17
The head of Germany's Social Democrats, Martin Schulz, said on Monday (4 December) he had been urged by French President Emmanuel Macron and other European leaders to join Chancellor Angela Merkel's next government and push for EU reforms.
www.euractiv.com | 12/5/17
Luxembourg hosted the first NewSpace Europe conference last month, bringing together European startups, investors, and government officials. Jeff Foust discusses some of the challenges European startups face in this sector and how they compete against American counterparts.

BERLIN — The Latest on the flow of migrants to Europe (all times local):

2:35 p.m.

A French government spokesman says France doesn't plan a military intervention in Libya but supports the creation of an African force to help fight against human traffickers.

Benjamin Grivaux said Sunday on CNews television that "an intra-African force must be able to intervene," after recent footage of a migrant slave auction in Libya drew global horror and condemnation.

He said that France and other European countries can help with intelligence and logistics.

The Irish government will have final say on whether the U.K. government’s proposals for avoiding customs checks on the island are acceptable, the European Union said.
www.wsj.com | 12/2/17
[AIM] Maputo -Mozambican Prime Minister Carlos Agostinho do Rosario announced on Wednesday, that while negotiations with the creditors are still under way, the Mozambican government will not repay any of the debts arising from the illicit loans that three security-related companies took from European banks (Credit Suisse and VTB of Russia) in 2013 and 2014.
allafrica.com | 11/30/17

Blog

The A Soul for Europe Conference 2017 in Berlin presented a multi-facetted programme that aimed at bringing civil society and politicians in a dialogue on how to take responsibility for the European project.

Starting the conference with a public debate, representatives from the political and the cultural field debated the fact that above all the citizens as well as the cities and regions should take an active part in Europe.

As Karl-Heinz Lambertz, President of the Committee of the Regions, put it “Europe is not Brussels. Europe is where you live!” The Mayor of Cluj, Emil Boc, who succeeded in gathering all kind of communities in his city for the candidacy of a European Capital of Culture disclosed his professional secret: "All politics is local. Let people participate in their municipalities and trust will increase for the political system at large."

To activate the cities in an European sense is what Volker Hassemer, Chairman of Stiftung Zukunft, is aiming at: “The national level does not give the support we expect. Therefore, we in the cities and regions must assume our own responsibility – especially in Germany."

Arts and Culture could be a good way to do so; especially when it comes to the populist and anti-European influence that can be observed in the public sphere. Author Juan Gabriel Vasquez claims that we have to rediscover the European Narrative and that we need more humanities in universities to counter fake news, propaganda and alternative facts.

The second day of the conference with around 250 participants kicked off with two key note speeches of Karl-Heinz Lambertz and Juan Gabriel Vasquez confronting the cultural perspective with the view of a politician.

After Lambertz‘ emotionally pointed out that Europe only has a future if it becomes more than a single market, since "you can’t fall in love with a single market”. Vasquez called out to the journalists, artists and people from the cultural sector in the audience: “We must take control of the story again. We must put the literary word back in the centre of our lives.”

In some of the overall ten workshops participants discussed ways to create a Europe from the bottom-up. Among the hosts of the workshops were political and cultural representatives from Georgia (Minister for European integration Victor Dolidze), from Serbia (Activists from “Let’s not drown Belgrade”), from the Netherlands (City Council of Amsterdam) and Germany (Das Progressive Zentrum).

In the track "Arts & Politics – A good match" workshops focused on the potential of arts and culture, such as the power of the written word (authors from the international literaturfestival, the community building work that Theater an der Parkaue is doing as a local theatre for children, or the role of journalists and media in a world where "alternative facts" influence public opinion, carried out by cafébabel.com and n-ost, two trans-European online media organisations.

33 examples of how individual citizens and civil society initiatives can have an impact on cities and regions were shown on the European Marketplace – the project representatives had the opportunity to exchange best-practice methods and examples for their initiatives and projects.

The core element of all the discussions and workshops was clear – it’s all about cooperation between civil-society, politics and culture. Only together, we can face the challenges for the European project ahead of us, Nele Hertling, spokesperson of the A Soul for Europe initiative, pointed out at the end of the conference.

In his inspirational speech, Guillaume Klossa, the chairman of CIVICO Europa summed it up: “Our goal: Each citizen thinks as a leader and each leader as a citizen.”

Image: Jule Halsinger/seesaw-foto.com

www.voxeurop.eu | 11/28/17
When it comes to digitisation, the new Austrian government of Sebastian Kurz and Heinz-Christian Strache wants to become a European role model. There is even unanimity over the basic framework. EURACTIV Germany reports.
www.euractiv.com | 11/28/17
Angela Merkel's chief of staff is indicating that the German chancellor's caretaker government won't take decisions that could bind its successor's hands on "major political questions," including French President Emmanuel Macron's European reform proposals.
www.foxnews.com | 11/26/17
Prime Minister Saad Hariri Friday met with the ambassador of the European Union and of Russia, who stressed the importance of the Lebanese government functioning without external interference.
Many saw the last German government as a tanker ship cruising stolidly and unswervingly through the stormy seas of world politics. But in the past few weeks, it has looked like the German ship and Captain Angela Merkel are about to start rolling and listing.
www.euractiv.com | 11/24/17
Ireland's government is at risk of collapse, three weeks before a crucial European Union summit on Brexit.
www.foxnews.com | 11/24/17

Blog

The winners of the latest EU Datathon, which looks at web applications or mobile solutions working with at least one (or more) open dataset produced by the EU institutions or agencies, combined or not with others from local, national or supranational government bodies, were announced on 16 November. Three projects were awarded, over the ten shortlisted. I was part of the jury on behalf of VoxEurop and the European Data Journalism Network.

The first prize went to C4P (photo: co-foundersAndreas Thanopoulos and Athanasios Staveris-Polykalas), an app that “generates intelligence about the EU market for the benefit of the public sector, companies and citizens using data science”. By collecting and displaying all the available (and updated) data on EU public procurement expenditure, it provides a helpful transparency tool both for businesses and journalists. The Second prize was awarded to Light on Europe, an app which allows to “explore explore any region within Europe by simply drawing it on the map – regardless of administrative boundaries. The app renders an infographic which conveys relevant and easy to comprehend information on it. The third prize went to Unigraph, a powerful tool for promoting transparency and accountability through “collecting, cleaning and combining open data from dispersed open data sources under a common and user-friendly layout”.

www.voxeurop.eu | 11/22/17
The chancellor’s inability to form a coalition government could push continental elites to become more accountable to the public.
www.nytimes.com | 11/22/17
The German leader’s failure to form a coalition government is a blow to hopes for a strong Franco-German engine to drive European Union reform.
www.nytimes.com | 11/21/17

The surge of rightwing nationalist parties throughout Europe has led to an increase in sexist, demeaning remarks as well as attempts to repeal crucial legislation affecting women’s rights, warn representatives of the Brussels Binder.

www.euractiv.com | 11/21/17
Negotiations to form the German government broke down, dealing a blow to Chancellor Angela Merkel and throwing the leadership and direction of Europe’s largest economy into doubt.
www.wsj.com | 11/20/17
Negotiations to form the German government broke down, dealing a blow to Chancellor Angela Merkel and throwing the leadership and direction of Europe’s largest economy into doubt.
www.wsj.com | 11/20/17

Occasionally, ordinary people succeed in having their voices heard and seeing their interests win out against those of multinationals in their appeals to European institutions. It’s rare enough to be worth exploring, and that’s what director Loïc Jourdain is doing in his documentary, A Turning Tide in The Life of Man, which has won many accolades and is now in cinemas.

Over many months, Jourdain followed the fishermen of the small island, Inishboffin. Competing with the deep-sea trawlers encouraged by the European Common Fisheries Policy which penalises small coastal fishing and favors industrial fishing, the fishermen find themselves deprived of their livelihood, and their traditional way of life seems threatened.

John O’Brien is one of those fishermen. He sees the results of his labour dwindle from day to day due to the industrial exploitation of fish stocks by large fishing companies, and the banning of drift nets by order of the European Union and Irish government policy. Then there is the plethora of regulations imposed by European bureaucracy on large as well as small fishing operations. O’Brien is sure that he and his fellow fishermen in Inishboffin are not the only ones in Europe experiencing this problem. So, low on options, he decides to head to Brussels to assert the interests of small coastal fishermen.

With the aid of the NGO, International Collective in Support of Fisherworkers (ICSF), the consultant Michael Earle and many generous experts, John O’Brien managed to unite fishermen all over Europe as well as other island communities, to encourage a better understanding of the particularity and specificity of their way of life. Forming around the Ocean 2012 coalition, O’Brien and his allies manage, after a self-evidently unequal legal battle against industry lobbies that lasted eight years, to influence the reform of the Common Fisheries Policy, such that the conditions and interests of small fishing operations are taken into account and the more absurd measures abolished.

John O’Brien’s story is exemplary for demonstrating the way in which European citizens and local communities can successfully assert their needs and interests — indeed, the public interest — when they can organise themselves, just like the multinationals and industries. In fact, European institutions are not necessarily hostile to this form of citizen lobbying, especially when they can formulate new policies or reforms, and represent the public interest.

Unfortunately, the representatives of civil society have more modest means than industrial operations and multinationals. This obliges them to unite and work together with other interested parties . Thankfully, good-will is often easy to come by. This is an example, therefore, of the “Citizen lobbying” conceptualised by the Italian legal expert, Alberto Alemanno, as a tool for exerting pressure on institutions, and for democratic and participative development.

www.voxeurop.eu | 11/17/17
HBO Europe’s upcoming original documentary slate spans films on activism, politics, music, and society in Europe, with projects from Mila Turajli? and Tereza Nvotova and four screenings at the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam, which began Wednesday. The slate is also notable for projects from first- and second-time directors such as Nvotova, Turajlic, Jan Gebert, […]
variety.com | 11/17/17
Musician Matthew Herbert hopes to tour Europe to heal "huge divisions" caused by Brexit - helped by a UK government grant.
www.bbc.co.uk | 11/15/17
In many European countries, conservative government has been recently elected ( Germany is an exception) creating a worldwide fear of decline of the welfare state
www.dnaindia.com | 11/12/17
Nowhere have European voters tossed out established parties with as much gusto as in the Czech Republic, where elections last month shifted the center-left opposition to a group led by a dreadlocked disc jockey with an aversion to suits.
www.wsj.com | 11/10/17
The mantra of the green movement used to be ‘think globally, act locally’. As the latest round of the UN climate talks begins in Bonn this week, those leading the European Union’s delegation would do well to remember these words, writes Stefano Bonaccini.
www.euractiv.com | 11/9/17

WARSAW, Poland — The Polish government is encouraging citizens to go forth and multiply like rabbits.

The health ministry of Poland, which has one of the lowest birth rates in Europe, has put out a short video praising rabbits for producing many offspring.

The European Union Wednesday reaffirmed its support for Lebanon's unity and sovereignty, days after Prime Minister Saad Hariri announced his resignation from government in a speech from Saudi Arabia.
Belgium's justice minister says his government will have no influence over the future of ousted Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont after Spain issued a European warrant for his arrest.
www.foxnews.com | 11/4/17
The European Union says Turkey must respect the "presumption of innocence" principle in its prosecution of a businessman and activist accused of attempting to overthrow the government.
www.foxnews.com | 11/3/17
With Sebastian Kurz, the EU can count on a pro-European partner in the new Austrian government. And expect a policy that is based on conservative values, but also willing to reform. EURACTIV Germany reports.
www.euractiv.com | 11/2/17
[ICG] Political uncertainty and increasing polarisation between government and opposition, combined with escalating violence in many provinces, have set the DRC on a dangerous trajectory. In this excerpt from the Watch List 2017 - Third Update early warning report for European policy makers, Crisis Group urges the European Union and its member states to denounce attempts by the DRC government to further delay the polls and offer technical electoral support to the Electoral Commission.
allafrica.com | 11/2/17

The politics of Europe deals with the continually evolving politics within the continent. It is a topic far more detailed than other continents due to a number of factors including the long history of nation states in the region as well as the modern day trend towards increased political unity amongst the European states. The current politics of Europe can be traced back to historical events within the continent. Likewise geography, economy and culture have contributed to the current political make-up of Europe. Modern European politics is dominated by the European Union, since the fall of the Iron Curtain and the collapse of the Eastern Bloc of Communist states. After the end of the Cold War, the EU expanded eastward to include the former Communist countries. By 2007, it had 27 member states.


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