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Keyword: europeanunion

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  • France adopts 'combat budget' for 2013

    09/29/2012 3:15:47 PM PDT · by Olog-hai · 6 replies
    EU Observer ^ | 28.09.12 @ 17:36 | Valentina Pop
    France's Socialist government on Friday (28 September) unveiled €30 billion ($38.6 billion) worth of tax hikes and spending cuts in a bid to bring the public deficit in line with EU rules next year. Dubbed a "combat budget" by Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault, the fiscal plan is based on sharp tax increases for the rich (75% on millionaires) and for companies expected to bring in €20 billion ($25.7 billion).The budget is based on the assumption the economy will grow by 0.8 percent.This may prove difficult, as France's growth was zero this year and the continuing eurozone crisis is worsening the...
  • Romney campaign stirs climate unease in Brussels

    09/25/2012 5:32:15 PM PDT · by Olog-hai · 14 replies
    EurActiv ^ | 25 September 2012 | Arthur Neslen
    EU officials are privately alarmed at the chilling effect that a Mitt Romney win in the US presidential election could have on global climate talks, EurActiv has learned. Although the Republican candidate is trailing President Barack Obama in the polls, his oft-stated doubts about a link between greenhouse gas emissions and climate change have led to “concern” at cabinet level, one source said. Speaking last October, Romney said: “My view is that we don’t know what is causing climate change on this planet and the idea of spending trillions and trillions of dollars to try and reduce CO2 emissions is...
  • EU's industrial policy plans hinge on hefty budget increase

    09/25/2012 5:26:56 PM PDT · by Olog-hai · 4 replies
    EurActiv ^ | 25 September 2012 | Jeremy Fleming
    Innovative technologies will form the core of a new industrial policy that the European Commission will put forward next month. But its success relies on a sharp increase of the EU’s budget, which will be a hard sell for cash-strapped EU nations struggling to contain their budget deficits. The EU executive’s proposed “priority action lines” for innovative technologies—including clean production manufacturing, electric cars, key enabling technologies and smart energy grids—require a massive increase in the EU's budget for research and development. The European Commission wants to see research funds boosted to €80 billion in the EU’s next seven-year budget (2014-2020)....
  • The New Great Dictators Are Gaining Momentum In Europe

    09/24/2012 8:41:46 PM PDT · by expat1000 · 13 replies
    TESTOSTERONE PIT ^ | Sept 24, 2012 | Jan Bennink
    Contributed by Jan Bennink, a Dutch advertising guy and a columnist for the leading newspaper De Volkskrant. He is @superjan on twitter. This column was first published in Dutch on Volkskrant Opinie.As far as I can remember I’ve never been afraid of the government. When I was a young upstart protesting military parades with safety pins through my ears, I wasn’t afraid. Even if the place was swarming with soldiers. When I was the bass player in a punk band, the P.A. Splashing Tovs, screaming at all kinds of government injustice, I did not feel unsafe. And in protest...
  • 11 European States Chart Course For A Federal Europe With Army (killing off NATO)

    09/22/2012 2:07:59 PM PDT · by Olog-hai · 18 replies
    INN ^ | 9/20/2012, 4:08 PM | Amiel Ungar
    In an article for the New York Times, German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle and his Polish counterpart Radek Sikorski have proposed a drastic revamp of the European Union. To provide the democratic legitimacy that must accompany greater centralization they propose a directly elected president of the European Commission and endowing the European Parliament with the powers to initiate legislation and not merely block it as is the practice today. … The centralization will not be merely economic, but will seek integration in foreign and defense policy that will no longer be hobbled by the need to achieve unanimity. Changes would...
  • Europe Finally Comes Out: Obama's Reelection "Uber Alles" Determines Europe's Future

    09/21/2012 9:02:02 AM PDT · by mojito · 10 replies
    ZeroHedge ^ | 9/21/2012 | Tyler Durden
    For those to whom this comes as a surprise, following the periodic jaunts of Tim Geithner to Europe explaining just what is truly important in life, not to mention Obama's daily phone calls to Mario Monti, we feel truly sorry: •EU-IMF REVIEW OF GREEK DEBT SITUATION SET TO BE DELAYED UNTIL AFTER U.S. ELECTION - EUROPEAN OFFICIALS And the punchlines: •"Obama doesn't want anything on a macroeconomic scale that is going to rock the global economy before Nov. 6," a senior EU official told •"As far as European leaders are concerned, they don't want Romney, so they're probably willing to...
  • Latvia still keen to join single currency despite euro crisis

    09/19/2012 10:07:15 PM PDT · by Cronos · 4 replies
    The Guardian ^ | 19 Sep 2012 | Ian Traynor
    "We don't think it's a sinking ship. We still see more positives than negatives," Valdis Dombrovskis, the Latvian prime minister.. Governments have tumbled everywhere in a backlash against slashed spending. But Dombrovskis has inflicted arguably the most painful austerity package of all on his country and been rewarded with re-election. As Greece pleads with its eurozone creditors for more time in meeting its fiscal adjustment targets, Dombrovskis is a fierce champion of surgical austerity applied quickly and ruthlessly. "The most important lesson is the speed of adjustment," he said. "When you're in a situation where the markets don't trust you,...
  • Pic Of The Day: French Magazine’s Naked Mohammed Cartoons… (click to enlarge)

    09/19/2012 2:58:37 PM PDT · by NYer · 71 replies
    Weasel Zippers ^ | September 19, 2012
    (click image to enlarge)
  • Intelligence chief: EU capital is 'spy capital'

    09/17/2012 9:31:59 PM PDT · by Olog-hai · 2 replies
    EU Observer | 17.09.12 @ 09:17 | Andrew Rettman
    For many in the age of foreign policy "resets" and "win-win" talks, espionage sounds like a thing of the past. But for Alain Winants, the head of Belgium's state security service, the VSSE, the EU capital currently has more spy activity than almost any other city in the world. Winants told EUobserver in a rare interview with international media that "we are not speaking in the dozens, we are speaking in the hundreds, several hundreds" of foreign intelligence officers and agents in Brussels. "In Belgium, espionage, Russian espionage and from other countries, like the Chinese, but also others, [is] at...
  • Round 2: French Magazine Charlie Hebdo To Publish Mohammed Cartoons…

    09/18/2012 2:10:08 PM PDT · by NYer · 13 replies
    Weasel Zippers ^ | September 18, 2012
    The last time Charlie Hebdo mocked Mohammed their Paris offices were firebombed. (AFP) — Fears that a wave of anger in the Islamic world could spread to Europe mounted as it emerged a French magazine was planning to publish cartoons caricaturing the Prophet Mohammed.Satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo confirmed that its latest edition contains several cartoons featuring Mohammed that the publication’s editor said would “shock those who will want to be shocked.”The magazine is due to hit the streets today against a background of protests across the Islamic world over a crude US-made film that mocks Mohammed and portrays Muslims as...
  • The French Magazine Firebombed Last Year Is Planning To Anger Hardline Islamists Again Tomorrow

    09/18/2012 2:27:30 PM PDT · by blam · 17 replies
    TBI ^ | 9-18-2012 | Adam Taylor
    The French Magazine Firebombed Last Year Is Planning To Anger Hardline Islamists Again Tomorrow Adam TaylorSep. 18, 2012, 2:05 PMCharlie Hebdo, a long-running French satirical magazine, angered hardline Islamic groups last year with a magazine guest-edited by "Mohammad", the Islamic prophet. For their efforts, the magazine eventually found that their offices firebombed. Luckily no-one was injured, and the magazine went on to put up another shocking issue, with a cover that showed a traditionally-dressed Muslim man (perhaps Mohammed?) sloppily kissing a male Charlie Hebdo cartoonist. Now, according to Le Monde, the editors of Charlie Hebdo are preparing to cause controversy...
  • 'Obama's Middle East Policy Is in Ruins'

    After days of protests over an anti-Islam film, American diplomatic missions in the Middle East and North Africa were braced for further violence after Friday prayers. The US put its overseas missions on high alert. Germany has closed its embassies in a number of Muslim-majority countries in fear of attacks. "We are observing how the security situation develops with great attentiveness and we have increased security precautions at a number of foreign missions," a spokesman for the German Foreign Office told SPIEGEL ONLINE. Embassies in North Africa, Afghanistan and Pakistan are believed to be among those affected.
  • EU working on consumer labels for Israeli settlement products (antisemitic boycott)

    09/14/2012 6:58:04 PM PDT · by Olog-hai · 9 replies
    EU Observer ^ | 09/14/2012 @ 09:28 | Andrew Rettman
    Denmark is fronting an EU initiative to help consumers boycott Israeli settlement products. … The move comes after EU foreign ministers in May said they will "fully and effectively implement existing EU legislation" on the subject. The EU says settlements are illegal. But its regular complaints about settlement expansion fall on deaf ears. … An Israeli source said EU pressure on settlements is nothing new. He said settlement-bashing supports the Palestinian line that settlement-building—instead of Israeli security—is the main obstacle in the peace process. …
  • Brussels drops plans for EU law limiting right to strike

    09/14/2012 6:39:02 PM PDT · by Olog-hai
    EurActiv ^ | 14 September 2012 | Marc Hall
    The European Commission has withdrawn proposed legislation limiting workers’ right to strike, amid a furor from trade unions and EU lawmakers in Parliament who waved a "yellow card" to Brussels for stepping over national sovereignty. … Critics had condemned the so-called Monti II regulation over its implications for European social rights and for interfering with national sovereignty. The European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC) rejected the proposal as it “restricts the right to take collective action.” … Governments claimed the right to strike was an issue to be regulated at the national level, and so the Monti II legislation—named after Italian...
  • Clegg brands those seeking to reform the EU 'populists, chauvinists and demagogues'

    11/15/2011 11:34:28 AM PST · by wolfman23601 · 6 replies
    UK Daily Mail ^ | 11/15/2011 | Daily Mail Reporter
    Nick Clegg clashed with the Prime Minister today after criticising plans to claw back powers from the EU. The Deputy Prime Minister said that only 'populists, chauvinists and demagogues' could benefit from a treaty negotiation, even though David Cameron yesterday re-affirmed his intention to repatriate powers. Mr Clegg warned that European politicians should focus on 'jobs and growth' rather than attempting to reform EU institutions. Read more:
  • Germany says U.S. debt levels "much too high"

    09/11/2012 5:47:51 AM PDT · by Perdogg · 54 replies
    Reuters ^ | 09.11.12
    German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble questioned on Tuesday how the United States could deal with its high levels of government debt after November's presidential election.
  • Report: Bribe money for contracts not prosecuted enough in European Union

    09/10/2012 6:19:35 PM PDT · by Olog-hai · 1 replies
    EU Observer ^ | 07.09.12 @ 09:30 | Nikolaj Nielsen
    Obtaining lucrative contracts in Europe by companies or individuals still involves, in some cases, bribing foreign public officials. The prosecution and investigation into such illicit acts has improved somewhat when compared to previous years, according to a report released on Thursday (6 September) by the Berlin-based NGO Transparency International (TI). … TI looked at laws dealing with corruption, money laundering, tax evasion, fraud, or violations of accounting and disclosure requirements. The report did not look at cases involving domestic companies and their respective public officials. …
  • Banking union leak points to sweeping powers for ECB (Euroepan Central Bank)

    09/10/2012 6:01:09 PM PDT · by Olog-hai · 1 replies
    EurActiv ^ | 10 September 2012 | Jeremy Fleming
    Blueprints for a European banking union to be published on Wednesday (12 September) will trigger fevered debate over the powers of the European Central Bank (ECB), if a draft leaked late last week remains unchanged. The draft proposal gives the ECB sweeping powers to carry out spot checks and withdraw banking licenses, previously the preserve of national supervisors. The ECB would assume its new duties on 1 July 2013, the paper says, taking sole authority at the beginning of 2014. The proposals—which still face months of negotiation between governments and the European Parliament—give the ECB the power “to authorize credit...
  • The Godmother: Germany's New Dictator, Angela Merkel?

    09/10/2012 5:07:39 PM PDT · by RetiredArmy · 23 replies
    Gatestone Institute ^ | September 6, 2012 at 4:00 am | by Peter Martino
    For two consecutive years, Forbes Magazine has elected Angela Merkel the most powerful woman on Earth. It might not be long before she becomes the most powerful person on Earth. That is what Gertrud Höhler, a former advisor of former German Chancellor Helmut Kohl fears. Höhler has published a book to warn the Germans about Merkel, who, Höhler says, wants to establish a dictatorship in Europe. The 58-year old Angela Merkel began her political career in 1991 as a junior minister under Chancellor Kohl. After the German reunification of 1990, Helmut Kohl needed some ministers from the former East Germany,...
  • Iceland Shows Other Europeans How to Survive Bankruptcy

    09/10/2012 4:41:42 PM PDT · by BfloGuy · 2 replies ^ | 7 Sep 2012 | Matthew Feeney
    Small Atlantic nation enjoys growth and employment gains after failing to rescue its banks. Mainland Europe remains stuck with stagnation, decline, and ruinous "rescue" packages.
  • Turkey court tries 44 pro-Kurd journalists in biggest media case

    09/10/2012 3:22:23 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 3 replies ^ | Monday September 10, 2012 | Ayla Jean Yackley
    Forty-four pro-Kurdish journalists went on trial in Turkey on Monday, charged with belonging to an armed rebellion in the country's largest media case, intensifying concerns about press and political freedoms. Thousands of pro-Kurdish trade unionists, politicians, academics and journalists have been jailed since 2009, accused of links with the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), which has waged a 28-year campaign against Turkey. "The clampdown on the Kurdish press ... raises major concerns about the treatment of minorities and minority opinion," said Emma Sinclair-Webb, Turkey researcher for Human Rights Watch (HRW). "Even when those views are offensive, they must be protected,"...
  • Rejecting the European Project - Daniel Hannan’s book deserves a wide audience.

    09/08/2012 11:18:00 PM PDT · by neverdem · 13 replies
    City Journal ^ | 7 September 2012 | Theodore Dalrymple
    A Doomed Marriage: Britain and Europe, by Daniel Hannan (Notting Hill Editions) There is nothing quite like self-interest for blinding people to the obvious, and it is the genius of the European Union to have placed an entire cadre of powerful but blind beneficiaries—unable and unwilling to see writing on the wall, even if inscribed in flashing blue neon lights—in strategic political and economic positions in every European country. And so the continent limps toward the abyss, its “ever closer union” resuscitating old national stereotypes and antagonisms and increasing the likelihood of real conflict. Daniel Hannan is a British...
  • UPDATE 1-German media, lawmakers decry ECB 'blank cheque'

    09/08/2012 7:52:32 PM PDT · by TigerLikesRooster · 9 replies
    Reuters ^ | 09/07/12
    UPDATE 1-German media, lawmakers decry ECB 'blank cheque' Fri Sep 7, 2012 7:37am EDT * Conservative media, some Merkel MPs slam ECB bond-buying plans * Eurosceptic lawmakers mull fresh legal action * Merkel allies say ECB acting within mandate * German public wants to halt bailouts - opinion poll By Gareth Jones and Stephen Brown BERLIN, Sept 7 (Reuters) - Germany's conservative press accused the European Central Bank on Friday of writing a "blank cheque" to indebted euro zone states by agreeing to buy their bonds, and some pro-government lawmakers threatened legal action to stop the purchases. ECB President Mario...
  • Portugal PM Sets New Austerity Measures

    09/08/2012 5:49:58 PM PDT · by bruinbirdman · 2 replies
    NASDAQ ^ | 9/7/2012
    --PM says measures will help tackle high unemployment --Portugal must cut budget deficit to 4.5% this year, 3% next --Opposition parties criticize more austerity LISBON--Portuguese Prime Minister Pedro Passos Coelho announced late Friday new measures he will impose next year to meet budget-deficit targets and tackle a sharp rise in unemployment. In a televised statement, Mr. Passos Coelho said he will increase the social-security contribution from employees to 18% from 11%, while cutting the same payment companies make to the state to 18% from 23.75%. "We will reduce substantially the costs of labor, providing incentives to investment and job creation,"...
  • Barroso aligns with Merkel in push for (European Union) treaty change

    09/05/2012 2:21:57 PM PDT · by Olog-hai · 6 replies
    EurActiv ^ | 05 September 2012
    European Commission President José Manuel Barroso has joined German Chancellor Angela Merkel in believing that the eurozone crisis could not be overcome without a treaty change to transfer national competences—such as budgets—to European institutions. Speaking to senior EU diplomats yesterday (4 September), Barroso argued that there was a need for “further political and institutional integration” and a consolidation of “a truly political union” through a change of the EU treaty. … Together with European Council President Herman Van Rompuy, Eurogroup President Jean-Claude Juncker and ECB President Mario Draghi, Barroso is expected to produce a concrete proposal at the 18-19 October...
  • EU: Brinkmanship as Spain warns over bail-out terms

    09/04/2012 2:55:23 PM PDT · by bruinbirdman · 8 replies
    The Telegraph ^ | 9/4/2012 | Ambrose Evans-Pritchard
    Spain has issued a veiled warning that it will not accept a full bail-out from Europe if the terms are too harsh, a move that would paralyse the European Central Bank and call the euro’s survival into question. In an escalating game of brinkmanship, Spanish finance minister Luis de Guindos said his country is not yet willing to sign a Memorandum giving up fiscal sovereignty to EU inspectors. “First of all, one must clarify the conditions,” he told German newspaper Handelsblatt. Mr de Guindos said the crisis engulfing the region is larger than any one country and warned north Europe...
  • Banking union to put 6,000 banks under ECB supervision

    09/04/2012 9:18:52 AM PDT · by Olog-hai · 1 replies
    EU Observer ^ | 31.08.12 @ 19:55 | Valentina Pop
    The European Central Bank will have the "ultimate decision-making authority" on supervising 6,000 euro-area banks, with some day-to-day tasks delegated to national bodies, a commission spokesman has said. "There is a clear need to cover all banks through a single supervisory mechanism for all 6,000 banks of the euro area," Stefaan De Rynck, spokesman for financial issues said during a press conference on Friday (31 August). The commission will table proposals on 12 September on granting the ECB sweeping supervisory powers to help early detection of troubled banks and force them to fix their balance sheets before having to ask...
  • Barroso mooted for third term as (EU) Commission president

    09/04/2012 8:58:25 AM PDT · by Olog-hai · 2 replies
    EU Observer ^ | 09/04/2012 @ 17:41 | Honor Mahony
    European commission President Jose Manuel Barroso should stand for an unprecedented third term in office, one of his senior colleagues has said. "With Jose Manuel Barroso, we have a very good and active President, who I admire for his strength, his legal mind, his patience and his wisdom in managing the current crisis," Viviane Reding, in charge of justice, told EurActiv Italy. "My personal wish would be that Jose Manuel stays on for a third term. Because I am sure that we need continuity and stability at the helm of governments in the years to come to continue to make...
  • Muslims deny inaction over anti-Semitism

    09/03/2012 11:45:37 AM PDT · by Nachum · 7 replies
    News.24 ^ | 9/3/12 | staff
    Berlin - The head of an umbrella organisation for Muslims in Germany on Monday rebuffed a call by a Jewish leader to do more to combat anti-Semitism after a rabbi was brutally attacked in Berlin. "Muslims do not need lessons on that. Anti-Semitism is not compatible with Islam," Ali Kizilkaya, chairperson of the Co-ordination Committee of Muslims, told the Berliner Zeitung. The beating last Tuesday of 53-year-old rabbi Daniel Alter in front of his young daughter, allegedly by a group of Arab youths, has been roundly condemned. The president of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, Dieter Graumann, urged...
  • Frontrunner in Belgian election may be uniting nation over need to split up

    06/08/2010 11:58:45 AM PDT · by Pantera · 26 replies · 51+ views
    Fox News ^ | June 8, 2010 | AP
    GHENT, Belgium (AP) — The frontrunner in Belgium's elections this weekend is running on perhaps the ultimate in divisive proposals: the breakup of the nation. Despite its status as the home of the European Union, Belgium itself has long struggled with divisions between its 6 million Dutch-speakers and 4.5 million Francophones but until recently talk of a breakup has been limited to extremists.
  • Culture clash may break up Belgium

    09/19/2007 10:21:54 AM PDT · by Republicain · 44 replies · 897+ views ^ | Sarah Laitner
    Belgium, it is business as usual. Trains run, the prime minister greets visiting foreign leaders, social security benefits are paid and the country’s famed bureaucracy functions unabated. If everything seems normal, it is – bar one glitch. Belgium has no new government, 101 days after a general election. Since it won independence in 1830, the country has had trouble keeping itself together. Now, concerns are growing that the Franco-phone Walloons of the south and the Dutch-speaking Flemings in the north will finally split. While Belgium bears few visible scars of political impasse, disagreements over state reform have left negotiators unable...
  • Right-Wing Party Threatens To Abolish Belgium

    05/16/2003 5:24:05 PM PDT · by bruinbirdman · 52 replies · 410+ views
    The Daily Telegraph ^ | May 17, 2003 | Ambrose Evans-Pritchard
    French-speaking enemies call him a "designer fascist", with his air of having just stepped off a plane from San Francisco. Filip Dewinter, the strongman of the Vlaams Blok, the Right-wing anti-immigration party that is poised to do well in tomorrow's Belgian election, is a man who provokes that sort of angry reaction. His Flemish front poses a mortal threat to the Belgian state and the welfare apparatus that keeps the French-speaking regions afloat. Filip Dewinter Each year, the Dutch-speaking majority in the north pay a bigger share of GDP to subsidise their former masters in Wallonia than the west Germans...
  • Flemish party banned as racist by Belgium's high court

    11/10/2004 3:20:07 PM PST · by swilhelm73 · 21 replies · 692+ views
    Telegraph ^ | 11/10/04 | Ambrose Evans-Pritchard
    Belgium's most popular political party was banned as racist by the country's high court yesterday, fuelling concerns that the judicial branch is being used to eliminate political enemies. The Vlaams Blok, a Flemish independence party promising to abolish Belgium as a nation, now cannot receive funding of any kind, and will have to disband. Frank Vanhecke, the party's chairman, accused the ruling elite of using totalitarian tactics to stop legitimate political expression and vowed to take the case to the European Court of Human Rights. "This is an attack on democracy and free speech. Our political opponents have changed the...
  • Barroso: EU Treaty 'needs to be renewed'

    09/03/2012 9:13:39 AM PDT · by Olog-hai · 3 replies
    EU Observer ^ | 09/03/2012 @ 09:14 | Andrew Rettman
    European Commission chief Jose Manuel Barroso has said EU institutions need more power over member states to fight the crisis. Speaking on Saturday (1 September) in The Hague at a meeting of constitutional court judges organized by Yale University, he called for a "European renewal" and for a further "leap" of integration. "We are experiencing a situation in which we need greater unity and coherence between our policies, as well as greater legislative harmonization ... We need greater institutional integration. We need to consolidate a transnational order that through shared sovereignty guarantees the protection of our citizens," he said. …
  • US companies conduct fire drills in case Greece exits euro

    09/03/2012 8:17:16 AM PDT · by John W · 7 replies
    New York Times via ^ | September 2, 2012 | Nelson D. Schwartz
    Even as Greece desperately tries to avoid defaulting on its debt, American companies are preparing for what was once unthinkable: that Greece could soon be forced to leave the euro zone. Bank of America Merrill Lynch has looked into filling trucks with cash and sending them over the Greek border so clients can continue to pay local employees and suppliers in the event money is unavailable. Ford has configured its computer systems so they will be able to immediately handle a new Greek currency. No one knows just how broad the shock waves from a Greek exit would be, but...
  • Muslims demand breakaway Islamic nation in Norway or another 9/11 threatened

    08/20/2012 1:10:50 PM PDT · by NYer · 71 replies
    Examiner ^ | August 19, 2012 | TIMOTHY WHITEMAN
    The Norwegian news portal VG Nett is reporting that a Muslim terrorist group, Ansar al-Sunna’, is threatening that if a section of the nation's capitol isn't transformed into a sharia-complaint Muslim nation, an attack rivaling 9/11 will be launched upon the Scandinavian nation.VG Nett has stated that the Norwegian Police Security Service (Politiets sikkerhetstjeneste - PST) is already familiar with many members of this particular terror group.As translated by Michael Laudahn, "If norwegian soldiers can take planes to Afghanistan, then Osama and Mohammed can also take planes to Norway, inshaAllah.Now, the government must wake up and assume responsibility, before this...
  • France and Germany moving towards closer political union

    09/02/2012 5:06:46 PM PDT · by Olog-hai · 65 replies
    EU Observer ^ | 30.08.12 @ 10:58 (August 30) | Valentina Pop
    Last year, Germany went out on a limb by calling for political union in Europe. The idea was met with little enthusiasm elsewhere in the eurozone, but particularly in France. After the election of French President François Hollande in May, it seemed that views of the EU's foremost political duo could not be further apart. But the mood has since changed, and serious plans are underway to create—if not a full political union, then something close to it. … Meanwhile, EU council president Herman Van Rompuy and others are drawing up a paper to upgrade the eurozone, which will be...
  • "Padlock" in 1,250 companies in Thessaloniki since the beginning of the year (Greece)

    08/22/2012 5:29:03 PM PDT · by dynachrome · 7 replies
    Protothema ^ | 8-22-12 | unattributed
    One thousand two hundred and fifty companies of Thessaloniki put "padlock" from the beginning of the year until the end of August, according to a statement of the Crafts Chamber of VETH city. Individual companies seem to be the most "weak link", and 998 of them have ceased to operate in the specified period of 2012. The picture shows the craft community is a continuation of 2011, when during the same period (January 1 to August 22) removed from the register of companies VETH 1269. (mangled thru google translator)
  • In crisis, Greece rounds up immigrants

    08/22/2012 7:10:50 AM PDT · by PapaBear3625 · 49 replies
    Associated Press ^ | 8/22/2012 | AP
    NEA VYSSA, Greece (AP) -- Border police jeeps hurtle along hot, dusty tracks past potato fields on their way to the river that marks the Greek-Turkish border. Sirens blaring, the convoys have been repelling wave after wave of migrants. ... In Athens, the operation is being bolstered by mass roundups of suspected illegal immigrants. They are seen lined up on the streets of the capital every day, many in handcuffs, waiting to be put in detention until they can be deported. In the first week of the crackdown in early August, police said they apprehended nearly 7,000 people for identification...
  • Spanish fresco restoration botched by amateur

    08/22/2012 1:49:28 PM PDT · by NYer · 41 replies
    BBC ^ | August 22, 2012
    Elias Garcia Martinez's Ecce Homo (left) and the "restoration" An elderly parishioner has stunned Spanish cultural officials with an alarming and unauthorised attempt to restore a prized Jesus Christ fresco. Ecce Homo (Behold the Man) by Elias Garcia Martinez has held pride of place in the Sanctuary of Mercy Church near Zaragoza for more than 100 years.The woman took her brush to it after years of deterioration due to moisture.Cultural officials said she had the best intentions and hoped it could be properly restored.DonationThe woman, in her 80s, was reportedly upset at the way the fresco had deteriorated and took...
  • French Bankers Are Moving To London To Escape Steep Taxes

    08/20/2012 7:25:16 AM PDT · by SeekAndFind · 23 replies
    Business Insider ^ | 08/20/2012 | Reuters
    PARIS/LONDON (Reuters) - The City of London financial district, though diminished by scandals and job cuts, is proving irresistible to fed-up Parisian bankers fleeing France's rising taxes and the feeling that they're not best loved at home. French financial groups big and small, from advisory firms and private equity houses to big banks like Societe Generale, are looking at London as a possible shelter from a new 75 percent tax rate on top French earners, bankers say. Take Bertrand Meunier, who recently agreed to move to London to take a job at private equity firm CVC Capital Partners, leaving a...
  • Marine fuel rules could cost billions, analysts say (European Union regs)

    08/21/2012 8:27:43 AM PDT · by Olog-hai · 8 replies
    EurActiv ^ | 21 August 2012 | ( with Reuters)
    A European crackdown on pollution from ships will require billions worth of investment by shipping firms on filter technology and by refineries on upgrades to produce cleaner fuels—burdens the industries say they can ill afford. The shipping industry is already struggling due to poor global demand and overcapacity, which have pushed freight rates to unprofitable levels for many operators. European refineries are under pressure from high crude costs, cheap refined product imports and weak demand. To comply with new European Union laws, shipping companies now face extra costs of €2.6 billion ($3.2 billion) to €11 billion ($13.7 billion) to switch...
  • Netanyahu ‘determined to attack Iran’ before US elections, claims Israel’s Channel 10

    08/20/2012 5:38:26 PM PDT · by Free ThinkerNY · 36 replies ^ | August. 20, 2012 | Times of Israel staff
    <p>The TV station’s military reporter Alon Ben-David, who earlier this year was given extensive access to the Israel Air Force as it trained for a possible attack, reported that, since upgraded sanctions against Iran have failed to force a suspension of the Iranian nuclear program in the past two months, “from the prime minister’s point of view, the time for action is getting ever closer.”</p>
  • Europe starts stockpiling oil as Iran conflict looms

    08/20/2012 5:52:29 AM PDT · by Olog-hai · 13 replies
    EurActiv ^ | 20 August 2012
    European governments are rushing to boost stockpiles of crude oil and fuel, anxious to comply with new EU rules and amid reports that Israel is preparing to launch an attack on Iran. Belgium and the Netherlands have issued tenders to import a total of around 250,000 tonnes of diesel and gasoline for delivery in September and October, their agencies said. France has also bought diesel and awarded a crude oil tender this week while Belgium is increasing its crude stocks. "This is yet another unexpected source of support for oil demand… [It] shows how the geopolitical concerns about Iran and...
  • Droughts cut Europe's food output, raise fire risks

    08/20/2012 5:48:32 AM PDT · by Olog-hai · 5 replies
    EurActiv ^ | 20 August 2012
    Droughts in southern and eastern Europe are contributing to the global decline in grain production while also elevating concern about the long-term impact on freshwater supplies. The European Commission, which has declared 2012 the Year of Water, is preparing a review some of Europe’s water legislation partly with climate change and extreme weather events in mind.Food security and how the EU safeguards its liquid resources are among the topics due to be discussed during World Water Week events that begin in Stockholm on 26 August. The UN Food and Agricultural Organization reports that food prices rose 6% overall in July,...
  • Poll: Almost half of Brits want to leave the EU

    08/16/2012 4:19:39 PM PDT · by Olog-hai · 7 replies
    EU Observer ^ | 14.08.12 @ 17:43 | Andrew Rettman
    Almost half of British citizens would vote to leave the EU if there was a referendum, pollsters say. A survey by Canadian firm Angus Reid out on Tuesday (14 August) noted that 46 percent would vote to leave. It also said 54 percent believe the last 40 years of British EU membership has had a "negative" effect on the country and that 81 percent are happy they do not use the euro. The numbers are more or less stable compared to December 2010 (the oldest data cited). At the time, 48 percent of people wanted Britain to leave. Amid talk...
  • Eurozone crisis spooks US election

    08/16/2012 4:12:47 PM PDT · by Olog-hai · 5 replies
    EU Observer ^ | 14.08.12 @ 09:05 | Valentina Pop
    What does Greece have to do with the next US president? Or the current debate about a "political and fiscal union" in Europe? Readers tempted to shrug shoulders and say "not much" would be ill-advised. The main topic in the US campaign ahead of the 6 November presidential elections is the economy. And Europe has become the bogeyman for the Republican camp. "I see our President making us more and more like Europe. I don't want to be like Europe, I want to be like America," Republican candidate Mitt Romney said on Sunday (12 August) during a campaign event in...
  • EU: Debt crisis drags eurozone economy down 0.2pc

    08/14/2012 5:51:58 PM PDT · by bruinbirdman
    The Telegraph ^ | 8/14/2012 | Louise Armitstead
    The eurozone was shown to be on the edge of a double-dip recession today, as even the powerhouse economies faltered in the face of the three-year-old debt crisis. The combined economies of the 17-members contracted by 0.2pc in the three months from April to June, according to Eurostat, following zero growth in the first quarter. News of the contraction came amid further speculation that Greece will push for a two-year extension of its latest austerity programme. Germany managed 0.3pc growth, thanks to strong investment and domestic consumption, and the Netherlands posted an up-tick in production of 0.2pc. But the growth...
  • European Union: Parts of Modi'in do not belong to Israel

    08/14/2012 9:13:50 AM PDT · by Olog-hai · 3 replies
    Ha’aretz ^ | 16:12 14.08.12 (August 14) | Ora Coren
    The municipality of Modi’in-Maccabim-Reut appears for the first time on the European Union’s newly published list of settlements whose exports will not be considered as made in Israel,and thus will not be eligible for tax breaks when imported to EU member countries. …
  • Security services record Islamist exodus to Egypt (can CAIR accompany them?)

    08/13/2012 5:13:37 PM PDT · by Milagros · 9 replies
    The local (Germany) ^ | Aug, 12, 2012
    Security services record Islamist exodus to Egypt Published: 12 Aug 12 10:53 CET German security services have recorded a leap in the number of radical Islamists traveling to Egypt, according to a report due to be published in Monday's Der Spiegel magazine.