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Eurosphere roundup: Violent clashes in Greece after a left-wing musician stabbed to death.. “EU wants sanctions against Croatia

In Uncategorized on September 19, 2013 at 10:05

VIDEO: Death sparks violence in Greece

Violent clashes have broken out in several Greek cities after a left-wing musician was stabbed to death, the suspect is a member of the neo-Nazi party Golden Dawn.

Protesters, police clash in Greek anti-fascist demos

Protesters and police clashed across Greece on Sept. 18 as thousands demonstrated against fascism following the murder of a leftist musician by a suspected neo-Nazi

MAIN FOCUS: EU wants sanctions against Croatia | 18/09/2013

In the row over the extradition of criminals the European Commission wants to impose sanctions against Croatia, EU Justice Commissioner Viviane Reding announced on Tuesday. Shortly before Croatia’s accession to the EU, Zagreb had let it be known that the European arrest warrant would only apply to crimes committed after August 2002. Some commentators are adamant that EU norms must be observed. Others reject accusations that the country is trying to protect communist criminals.

When it comes to Europe, Germany’s political elite and public are deeply divided

On the question of Europe, there is a painful gap between the German political elite and the public.
Variations on citizenship in a wider Europe: a round-table discussion

Has ‘multilevel governance’ replaced the nation state or European confederation, creating the precondition for a multilevel citizenship? Or is this just a name we give to the empty place left by the demise of the nation state?

 

Yes to a different Scotland

Today marks one year to go until Scotland votes on its future. As the referendum approaches, it’s important that the debate nurtures ideas for a better Scotland.

 

“Merkel is a pragmatic European” – an interview with the BBC’s Jon Sopel

On 22 September, Germans will go to the polls and decide over the future course of their country and, perhaps, Europe as a whole. BBC presenter Jon Sopel sat down with The European to discuss the election, Angela Merkel’s governing style and rising German Euroskepticism.

NGOs claim poor countries lose $100bn yearly from tax dodges by EU firms

 

Tax dodging by EU companies is costing poor countries at least $100bn (€74bn) a year because of the EU’s failure to live up to legal obligations to ensure that its policies do not harm developing states, European NGOs said on Wednesday (18 September).

 

A report by Concord, a group of European NGOs, has piled pressure on rich countries to take tougher action on tax avoidance so that developing countries keep their fair share of tax revenues. Tax has emerged as a key issue for developing countries, with leaders such as Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, the Nigerian finance minister, and Kofi Annan, the former head of the UN, calling on rich countries to do more on tax avoidance and illicit flows. Such flows amounted to $859bn (635bn) in 2010 alone.

NHS decisions, Eurovision-style

Transparency, Accountability and Democracy can seem like a protective triumvirate for public decision making, but these can easily turn shallow, demotic and false.

No quantum leap on eurozone integration after the German elections

Our Director Mats Persson has an op-ed in today’s Wall Street Journal, where he argues,

A satirical cartoon in the Italian magazine L’Espresso, depicting a father and son, illustrated it best: “Papa,” says the son, “I have to go to the toilet.”

“Hush,” answers the father. “Hold it until after the German elections.”

EU threatens Croatia over extradition law

Brussels has moved to block aid in an attempt to force Zagreb to amend legislation that critics say could shield suspected war criminals
MyVote2014 – the European Parliament voting calculator based on data, not manifestos

Screen Shot 2013-09-18 at 17.53.37

I’m very happy to be sat today at the launch event of MyVote2014, a new voting tool for the European Parliament elections 2014. I’ve been working with Michiel, Joan and Doru atVoteWatch Europe, the folks behind the site, to help them with some of the social media promotion of their tool. Yet while I am professionally involved with the project, I am also very committed – as a citizen – to making sure this tool works, and as many people as possible take the MyVote 2014 test.

VIDEO: Countdown to German election

Chancellor Angela Merkel’s campaign has warned that the result of Germany’s upcoming parliamentary election will be closer than predicted, four days before voters head to the ballot box.

French centrists mull EPP walkout

 

Jean Arthuis, a leading centrist French senator from the Union of Democrats and Independents (UDI), told EurActiv.fr that his party feels closer to the Liberal ALDE group in the European Parliament, signalling a potential departure from the centre-right European People’s Party (EPP).

 

In an interview with EurActiv.fr, Arthuis also said he would run for the European elections next year “if necessary”.

Infographic: EU states’ aid pledge nears breaking point

 

In 2005, EU ministers pledged to spend 0.7% of member states’ Gross National Incomes on overseas development aid by 2015, keeping in line with the UN Millennium Development Goals. But new analysis of the latest figures shows that when genuinely new aid is counted, EU states are barely meeting half of that commitment. Fifteen months remain to change the picture.

After Eurovignette, EU asks: ‘For whom the road tolls?’

 

SPECIAL REPORT/ Seven years after the ‘Eurovignette’ directive, the European Commission is planning to permanently shift its method for measuring road pricing away from the time that a vehicle has spent on a motorway and towards the distance it has covered, according to a draft directive proposal seen by EurActiv.

 

Time-based road charging – also known as vignettes or Eurovignettes – for heavy goods vehicles (HGVs) was enabled by a 2006 EU directive. But in the new directive it is dubbed a “suboptimal tool” for applying the ‘user pays’ and ‘polluter pays’ principles which underwrite EU transport legislation.

EU farm subsidies rise despite downward trend: OECD

global food security 03

 

Public support made up 19% of all EU farming revenues last year despite the historic downward trend, the OECD said in a report released yesterday (18 September).

 

The EU shelled out 83,000 in support for agricultural producers, 19%, of total receipts and 1% up from the total last year, according to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).

EU cracks down on interbank ‘benchmark’ indexes

 

The European Commission proposed sweeping new rules yesterday (18 September) that aim to avoid repeats of the scandals affecting the London Interbank Offered Rate (Libor) and the Euro Interbank Offered Rate (Euribor) in 2012.

 

The proposals, presented by the EU’s Internal Market Commissioner Michel Barnier, would regulate a huge range of indexes covering finance, commodities, energy and currencies for the first time.

EU policymakers push for action on obesity

 

Obesity-related illnesses have become such a problem in Europe that they have reached the top political level, with even the EU council’s Lithuanian presidency vowing to raise the issue at upcoming ministerials.

 

In Europe, an estimated 50% of all men and women were overweight in 2008, and 23% of all women and 20% of men were obese, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

Stronger together – a real opportunity for Ukraine

 

In the face of the antiquated gunboat diplomacy practiced by Russia vis-à-vis Ukraine, the EU representation in Kyiv has launched a communication programme called ‘Stronger together,’ in line with the European aspirations of the Ukrainians, writes Martin Nunn. 

 

Martin Nunn works for Foley & Nunn in Kyiv.

“As the November deadline for the signing of the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement and Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Agreement approaches there has been a flurry of activity to pressure, persuade, threaten and cajole the government of Ukraine into seeing the wisdom of Russia’s Customs Union.

Despite crisis, European ‘hospitality’ sector remains healthy

 

The hotel and bar sector in Europe has continued to create jobs across the continent, despite the raging economic crisis, a new report shows. Over half of the people employed in the industry are under 35. Sector’s representative call for a favorable tourism legislation to boost growth and jobs further.

 

A new study on the hospitality sector in Europe indicates a growth in employment figures all through the first years of the economic crisis.

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