Freedom of thought

Global Europe 24-05-2017

US reject talks with Hungary over higher education law

The United States has no intention of negotiating with Hungary about its new higher education law, which could force a top university founded by US financier George Soros out of the country, the US State Department said yesterday (23 May).

23-05-2017

EU states approve plans to make social media firms tackle hate speech

European Union ministers approved proposals on Tuesday (23 May) to make social media companies such as Facebook, Twitter and Google's YouTube tackle videos with hate speech on their platforms.

23-05-2017

Tense trial begins for alleged 2016 Turkey coup ringleaders

More than 220 suspects, including over two dozen former generals, went on trial yesterday (22 May) accused of being among the ringleaders of last year's attempted coup against Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.

22-05-2017

Abortion row hits pro-EU LibDems UK election campaign

The most staunchly pro-EU party in the upcoming British election has been hit by a row over its leader’s Christian beliefs, especially on abortion, undermining its call for a second Brexit referendum.

22-05-2017

Hungarians protest government crackdown on universities, NGOs

Thousands of protesters marched through Budapest on Sunday in a demonstration against tough laws targeting foreign-backed NGOs and higher education institutions, amid rising tensions between Budapest and Brussels.

MEPs urge Romania against referendum on changing definition of marriage

MEPs from across the political spectrum have urged Romania’s parliament not to organise a referendum that could make gay marriage impossible under a revised constitution. EURACTIV Romania reports.

18-05-2017

Hungarian vote badly divides EPP group

The centre-right European Peoples’ Party (EPP) was badly fractured yesterday (17 May) over a vote condemning the "serious deterioration" in the rule of law and fundamental rights in Hungary, with 107 of the group's MEPs voting against the instructions of the EPP leadership, and only 92 following them.

Central Europe 16-05-2017

EU ministers extend talks with Poland over rule of law fears

EU ministers agreed yesterday (16 May) to continue long drawn-out talks with Poland in a bid to stop its alleged breaches of the rule of law, backing away for now from threatening sanctions.

16-05-2017

ACP states push back at New Consensus on Development over ‘democracy’ deficit

Voices from the African, Caribbean and Pacific nation states pushed back on Monday (15 May) at the focus on ‘democracy’ in the European New Consensus on Development, in a debate which opens old wounds between donor countries, and developing nations.

16-05-2017

Russian rights activists call on EU to stand up for its values

Russian human rights activists in Brussels yesterday (15 May) called on the EU to stand up for its values, as they feared that those principles were quickly eroding.

Elections 16-05-2017

EU ministers to debate threats to rule of law in member state Poland

For the first time ever, EU governments will debate today (16 May) on what is considered to be internal affairs of one of the Union’s members – Poland.

Central Europe 15-05-2017

Macron’s win puts pressure on Poland, Hungary to align with EU

While the election of Emmanuel Macron as French president with a vision of closer European Union integration was a relief to much of Europe, for Poland and Hungary it fanned fears of losing influence.

EU Priorities 2020 12-05-2017

Orbán ‘killed’ Parliament motion seeking to block EU funding for NGOs

A European Parliament motion seeking to stop EU funding for NGOs that oppose the bloc's strategic, commercial and security objectives was postponed until the Court of Auditors submits “reliable data” on the issue, EURACTIV.com has learned.

12-05-2017

Are NGOs immune to conflicts of interest?

The EU should keep its interaction with interest groups in check to avoid conflicts of interest. Whether those groups are corporate lobbies or NGOs, the same rules should apply, writes Tamar Kogman.

Development Policy 11-05-2017

EU to send one of ‘biggest ever’ election monitoring teams to Kenya

EXCLUSIVE/ The EU is sending one of its “biggest missions ever” to monitor the upcoming election in Kenya, amid fears of a repeat of the ethnic clashes during the 2007 election, which left up to 1,500 people dead, and some 600,000 displaced.

11-05-2017

Freedom of religion in EU diplomacy: Defending a cause or promoting divergent interests?

In recent years, the EU has taken several initiatives to promote freedom of religion across the world, even though the cause has been losing some of its lustre within international relations and has thrown into question the idea of basic rights as an indivisible whole, writes Professor François Foret.

Global Europe 11-05-2017

Eurovision shines spotlight on LGBT struggle in Ukraine

Ahead of the Eurovision Song Contest final in Kyiv, an extravaganza embraced by the LGBT community, Ukraine's "Celebrate Diversity" motto sounds more like wishful thinking than a fact of life.

The Counter Extremism Project says Twitter needs to take responsibility for radical groups using the platform
Digital 10-05-2017

Online platforms face EU regulation on transparency and business contracts

Internet platforms like Google, Facebook and Amazon Marketplace face regulation over their contracts with other businesses by the end of the year, under possible new EU legislation announced today (10 May).

03-05-2017

Council of Europe blasts moves to turn public TV into state broadcasting

Public service broadcasting in Europe is under threat, the Council of Europe said yesterday, ahead of the World Press Freedom Day (3 May), a date which celebrates the fundamental principles of press freedom.

03-05-2017

A free and independent press is a necessity, not a luxury

In these uncertain times, World Press Freedom Day is a chance for the EU to guarantee publishers and journalists the freedom they need to carry out their jobs, writes Christian Van Thillo.

02-05-2017

Myanmar’s Suu Kyi rejects UN probe on Muslims during Brussels trip

Aung San Suu Kyi on Tuesday (2 May) rejected a decision by the UN's rights council to investigate allegations of crimes by Myanmar's security forces against minority Rohingya Muslims.

02-05-2017

Pro-EU Hungarians rally against Russian influence

Thousands of Hungarians rallied in Budapest Monday, chanting "Europe, not Moscow" in support of the EU and against Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, whom protesters said is too close to Russia.

28-04-2017

Freedom of religion and belief beyond the EU’s borders

Religious freedom is one of the most essential human rights, enshrined solidly in international law. Being part of EU primary law, the Union has committed to promote and protect religious freedom worldwide.

#Media4EU 28-04-2017

NGO: Freedom of the press at lowest point in 13 years

With populism and authoritarianism on the rise in many countries, global press freedom has taken a blow. In fact, it is at its lowest point in 13 years, according to a US-funded research and advocacy organisation.

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