Tag Archives: EP

Josep Borrell faces MEPs scrutiny

The MEPS of Foreign Affairs Committee questioned Josep Borrell, Spanish candidate for High Representative/Vice-President for foreign affairs and security policy.

Political groups’ coordinators from the committee will meet within 24 hours to assess the performance of Josep Borrell, candidate EU top diplomat job.

During his introductory speech  Borrell stressed his intention to engage in reforms in the Western Balkans, support democracy and the integrity of Ukraine, address the challenges in the southern neighbourhood, develop a new strategy towards Africa, work on political relations with Asia, step up cooperation with Latin America and reinstate transatlantic relations (US-EU). “The world has changed for the worse…There are few agreements, more vetoes”, he said.

MEPs enquired how he intends to reach consensus among member states on decisions regarding e.g. Russia or generally related to security and defence. “We need shared strategic culture and empathy to understand the different points of view”, he replied. MEPs also asked about the role the EU could play in creating global security, when non-proliferation agreements are being breached. They also raised the issue of protecting EU maritime interests worldwide.

Asked about Kosovo-Serbia negotiations, Borrell replied that negotiations have lasted too long and Europe has to engage in helping Kosovo and Serbia out of the deadlock. His first visit as High Representative/Vice-President would be to Pristina, Commissioner-designate announced.

MEPs also asked how he intends to achieve a more strategic and coherent union, as announced in the Mission letter of the Commission President Borrell said that the EU has tools for foreign policy, such as a powerful common trade policy or diplomatic power. “The EU has to learn to use the language of power”, he stressed.

Salvini concerned by vd Leyen election

Italy Deputy Prime minister Matteo Salvini has expressed his concern about the election by the European Parliament of Ursula von der Leyen as European Commission president.
We saw a president of the European Commission indicated by Merkel and backed by Macron, Renzi and Berlusconi and the 5-Stars, leaning very far to the left on some issues like economic growth and border control, we are concerned,” Salvini said.

She passed by nine votes, it’s as if in Italy there was a PD-FI-M5S government, what change does she represent? “I’m proud of the coherence and loyalty shown by the MEPs of the League (in not voting for her” he added.

Von der Leyen vows cooperation among EU institutions

Ursul von der Leyen, endorsed by the EU leaders for European Commission president had a meeting with the European People’s Party MEPs in camera at the European Parliament in Strasbourg on July 3. She also made a press statement, explaining that the cooperation among EU insitutuions will be her proportion in case her candidacy is approved by the Europarliament.

Von der Leyen met with the newly elected president of the European Parliament Socialist David Sassoli, however the exchanged of view has not been revealed.

 

Catalan MEPs banned from Europarl seats

EU Catalan electorate organised demonstration at doorstep of the European Parliament in Strasbourg on July 2 – the first day of the sitting of a new legislature. They have been protesting against ban of three of their elected MEPs to access their offices. Oriol Junqueras,  imprisoned in Spain, Charles Puigdemont and Antoni Comin, stay in exile in Belgium.

Carles Puigdemont was expected among the demonstrators but his lawyer Gonzalo Boye convinced him to avoid travelling in France, fearing his arrest.

According to local police, around 10,000 demonstrators participated. They came by bus, cars and even two chartered flights.

Spanish MEPs from parties like the Ciudadanos insist that fugitive suspects do not have the right to sit in the European Parliament, representing electorate.

On Monday, the European Court of Justice agreed with this opinion.

Europarl delays president election

The European Parliament (EP) election of president is postponed due to EU leaders third day crisis Summit Brussels, which have failed to produce the list of the EU institutions top jobs nominees on Sunday (June 30).

The conference of presidents of the EP political groups agreed to extend deadline to 22H00 July 2 to nominate candidates for the speaker.

In spite of the fact that European parliament is only elected institution, and the European elections were announced as the second most numerous democratic exercise across globe, the Europarl relinquished its powers to elect President independently, and agreed to align its choice with the decision of the European Council, nominating candidates for EU top jobs, including most influential president of the European Commission, de facto Prime Minister of Europe, and guardian of the EU Treaty.

In protest Brexit Party MEPs turned their backs to former President Tajani during the European anthem chanting  at the opening session of the EU Parliament today.

AMENDED:

 

MEPs demand China to stop arbitrary detentions

China must stop arbitrary detentions of religious and ethnics minorities, said Members of European Parliament in a resolution adopted during April Strasbourg Plenary.

Parliament is concerned about the increasingly repressive regime that many religious and ethnic minorities, such as Uyghurs, Kazakhs, Tibetans and Christians, are facing in China. The situation is rapidly deteriorating, placing additional restraints on their fundamental rights. It calls on the Chinese Government to put an end to arbitrary detentions, without any charge, trial or conviction for criminal offence, of members of the Uyghur and Kazakh minority and Tibetans.

“Continuing to negotiate with China over investment and trade issues while ignoring reports of human rights abuses, means the international community is failing to respect its own set of values”, Thomas Mann MEP said. (pictured above).

According to the United Nations estimates, China has put in place an extrajudicial detention programme, currently detaining “from tens of thousands to upwards of a million Uyghurs’” who are forced to undergo political “re-education”. MEPs are also concerned about the information that the Xinjiang camp system has expanded into other parts of China and, in this regard, urge China to close all detention centres and to release the detained persons immediately and unconditionally. The full resolution will be available here (18.04.2019).

The resolution on China was adopted by 505 votes in favour, 18 against, with 47 abstentions.

Lega challenges EU

Nationalist, Eurosceptic parties plan to join forces following next month’s European Union parliamentary elections (#EUElections2019),  attempting to create a new alliance to challenge the EU traditional politicize mindset.

The move shows growing confidence among  sovereignist parties that for the first time since the EU was formed 60 years ago they can win enough seats in European parliament to put forward their agenda.

We want to reform the European Union and the European parliament, without destroying them. We want to bring radical change,” said Joerg Meuthen, the chairman of the eurosceptic Alternative for Germany party (AfD).

Mr.Meuthen said to reporters the EU parliamentary bloc would be called the European Alliance for People and Nations. It will initially involve at least 10 parties drawn from the three groups that currently house various nationalist forces.

The event was organized by Italian Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini, who heads the right-wing League.

We can propose a new Europe because we have never governed (in Brussels),” Salvini said. “Our goal is to be decisive, to nominate new commissioners in the new commission,” he added, referring to the powerful institution that shapes EU policy-making.

However, it was not immediately clear if two of Europe’s biggest national conservative forces — Poland’s governing Law and Justice party (PiS) and Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban’s Fidesz party — would be interested to join the group.

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