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EP candidate runs on anti-gay ticket


This was part of a month-long festival dedicated to Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex (LGBTI) rights, and supported by the American embassy in Bucharest. Close to 100 people had turned up to watch the film and sat silently as the credits rolled. A minute later around 40 members of the audience, who were draped in the Romanian tricolor flag, jumped from their seats yelling and screaming, and brandishing religious icons over the lights from the projector. Shouting "Die Faggots", "Get out of the country", "Filth" and "Get o... Read More »

Bertelsmann Stiftung: The united citizens of Europe


What is important is that in this, the eighth election held at the European level since 1979, voters have the opportunity for the first time to help determine who will become president of the European Commission. Five of the eight political parties in the European Parliament have candidates running for this office, a key position in Europe's institutional structure. What might the consequences be should this all-important office be occupied for the first time by one of the 751 representatives of the European Parliament? If that were to happe... Read More »

European Youth Event 2014 (EYE) to table ideas for a better Europe on 9-11 May


The EYE agenda lists five key issues for young people today: youth unemployment, the digital revolution, the future of the European Union, sustainable development, and European values. Guest speakers will include MEPs, journalists, business leaders, decision makers, and European youth organisations. Over half of Europe’s young people (57%) feel that the crisis has left them marginalised and excluded from economic and social life, says a 28 April Eurobarometer poll on these five issues, commissioned by the European Parliament ahead of the May... Read More »

EU reaches deal on bank account for everyone


Under the bill, anyone legally residing in the EU, including customers with no fixed address, will be able to open a basic account. ... Read More »

eCall system: saving lives on European roads


The EU-wide eCall is expected to speed up the emergency services' response time by 40% in urban areas and 50% in the countryside, bringing down the number of fatalities and reducing the severity of injuries suffered in road accidents. It will also cut down congestion caused by accidents and the number of secondary accidents at unsecured accident sites. To enter into force, the text still needs to be formally approved by the Parliament, whose vote in plenary is expected to take place in April, and the Council, which is due to take its decisio... Read More »

Put 32 Russian officials on an EU „Magnitsky list, urge Foreign Affairs MEPs


The EU Council should draw up a common list of officials believed to be responsible for the torture and death of Russian lawyer Sergei Magnitsky, for its judicial cover-up and for continuing harassment of his mother and widow. These officials should be banned from travelling in all EU countries and their financial assets held in the EU should be seized, say MEPs in a resolution drafted by Kristiina OJULAND (ALDE, EE) and adopted by 53 votes in favour, 1 against and 2 abstentions. MEPs refer to independent investigations which found Mr Mag... Read More »

Helping European companies stay afloat


Every year around 200,000 companies across the EU face the prospect of bankruptcy, costing 1.7 million people their livelihoods as a result. More needs to be done to ensure failing companies can restructure at an early stage and stay in business. Reforming national insolvency will be good for all concerned. Not only will it protect viable businesses and safeguard jobs, it will reduce risks for investors, improve returns for creditors and encourage cross-border investment. To achieve a more consistent system, the EU is recommending nationa... Read More »

Stress-free holidays for 120 million consumers – European Parliament backs new rules on package travel


The reform will bolster protection for consumers by increasing transparency about the kind of travel product they are buying and by strengthening their rights in case something goes wrong. Businesses will also benefit as the new Directive will scrap outdated information requirements such as the need to reprint brochures and will make sure that national insolvency protection schemes are recognised across borders. The main changes supported by the European Parliament's report are: Member States will be able to make package travel retailers... Read More »

Opinion: Looking on the bright side of the euro crisis


A certain European public sphere already exists. It exists in the networks of culture, art, sports, movies, pop music, fashion and, of course, the economy - often already as part of a global public sphere. Just think of the Champions League, the Eurovision Song Contest, the Venice Biennale, the Berlin International Film Festival, the Milan fashion show, all the everyday economic and trade relations, European company mergers, European civil society networks and millions of people travelling to and living in other European countries. But beyon... Read More »

EU bank reforms aim to curb speculation and risky trades


The proposed reforms would ban around 30 of the EU’s largest banks from carrying out so-called proprietary trading, where banks use their own funds for investments to boost profits for their own gain. Although the practice can be highly profitable for banks, the EU says it entails many risks but no benefits for either banks’ clients or the wider economy. Making the banking system safer Strengthening the financial stability of the EU’s largest banks, those regarded as too large to be allowed to fail, will ensure taxpayers do not end up ... Read More »

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