Benjamin Fox

Elections 09-05-2021

Indyref 2 is ‘will of the country‘, says Scottish first minister following poll win

The pressure for a second referendum on Scottish independence will step up after the Scottish National Party secured 64 of the 129 seats following Thursday’s (6 May) Scottish parliament elections and declared that an independence poll was “the will of...
EU-Africa 07-05-2021

‘Urgency’ needed on EU military mission in Mozambique, says Borrell

The European Union must move with "urgency" to step up its support for Mozambique as it battles against a wave of attacks by Islamic insurgents by sending a military training mission to work with local soldiers, the bloc’s foreign affairs chief said on Thursday (6 May).
Non-discrimination 06-05-2021

Time to raise awareness of €1.5bn EU equality and rights programme, says leading MEP

Last month, European lawmakers proclaimed the EU’s Citizens, Equality, Rights and Values programmes as the largest ever amount of EU funding dedicated to promoting the bloc's values such as democracy and fundamental rights.
Non-discrimination 04-05-2021

Belgium must halt police race violence and end racial profiling, says UN committee

Belgium must take action to tackle ‘police-related racial violence’ and racial profiling, according to new recommendations by a UN committee published on Monday (3 May).
Brexit 30-04-2021

‘Black day’ leaves UK fishing worse off than before Brexit

The collapse of talks on a fishing quota deal with Norway has exposed the vulnerability of the UK’s fishing industry and left it in a weaker position than when the UK was in the EU, fishing leaders have said.
Brexit 30-04-2021

EU ministers agree stance on €5bn fund to cover Brexit costs

EU27 ministers on Thursday (29 April) agreed their position on a four-year Brexit Adjustment Reserve designed to help businesses cover losses and the additional costs imposed under the new post-Brexit trade agreement with the UK.
Brexit 28-04-2021

MEPs lament ‘lose-lose’ situation as EU Parliament votes Brexit trade pact

The bruises left by the Brexit process were evident on Tuesday (27 April) even as EU lawmakers endorsed the trade deal that now governs economic relations between the UK and EU, almost five years after the UK voted to leave the bloc.
Brexit 22-04-2021

MEPs set date for Brexit vote but warn London ‘no new concessions’

EU lawmakers are set to finally ratify the bloc’s post-Brexit trade agreement with the UK after the European Parliament’s political group leaders set next Tuesday (27 April) as the date to take a plenary vote on the deal.
Non-discrimination 21-04-2021

EU will unveil anti-Semitism strategy as part of anti-racism programme, says Schinas

The EU will set out a comprehensive strategy to combat anti-Semitism this year as part of a €1.5 billion programme to support fundamental rights across the bloc, Commissioner Margaritis Schinas said on Tuesday (20 April).
EU-Africa 20-04-2021

EU set to send election observers to Ethiopia despite Tigray conflict

The European Union is set to send an election observation mission to monitor Ethiopia’s elections in June, the EU’s chief diplomat said on Monday (19 April), despite the ongoing war in the country’s northern Tigray province.
Brexit 19-04-2021

‘Comfortable Leavers’ study scotches myth of the average Brexit voter

The popular image of the classic Brexit voter as “a poorly educated inhabitant of a faded seaside town or the grim, post-industrial north” of England has been shown as wildly inaccurate according to new research on so-called "Comfortable Leavers" published on Monday (19 April).
EU-Africa 16-04-2021

Successor to EU-Africa Cotonou treaty marks ‘turning point’, says EU

The EU and African, Caribbean and Pacific Community on Thursday (15 April) finalised the successor to the Cotonou agreement, bringing a close to two and a half years of negotiations and repeated delays.
Future EU 15-04-2021

Launch event of EU reform conference will be online focused, says Commissioner

The event formally launching the Conference on the Future of Europe on 9 May is set to be a ‘hybrid’ of online and physical participation because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the EU Commissioner tasked with guiding the process said on Thursday (15 April).
Brexit 15-04-2021

MEPs move closer to ratifying Brexit deal but final date remains unclear

EU lawmakers moved closer to ratifying the bloc’s new trade agreement with the UK on Thursday (15 April), after the European Parliament’s International Trade and Foreign Affairs Committees gave their green light to the pact.
Development Policy 13-04-2021

EU aid spending surges amid COVID pandemic

Development aid from the EU increased by more than 25% last year as funding for programmes to combat COVID-19 and support poorer countries surged, according to data published by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development on Tuesday (13 April).
Brexit 09-04-2021

‘Uncertain’ Brexit deal could see UK bound by EU subsidies rules, lawmakers warn

The uncertain legal status of the Northern Ireland Protocol could lead to major confusion and the UK becoming de facto bound by EU subsidy rules, according to a report by UK lawmakers published on Friday (9 April).
Brexit 08-04-2021

Johnson urged to convene all-party talks following riots in Northern Ireland

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has been urged to convene all-party talks on Northern Ireland after the sixth night of riots in the province on Wednesday (7 April) left more than 50 police officers injured.
Economy & Jobs 08-04-2021

G20 agrees ‘final extension’ to $10 billion debt service suspension scheme

Developing countries stand to benefit from up to $10 billion in savings after the G20 group of wealthy nations announced on Wednesday (7 April) that it would extend its debt service suspension initiative (DSSI) which launched last May until the end of this year.
Economy & Jobs 01-04-2021

EU states set to benefit from multibillion IMF Special Drawing Rights programme

EU states are set to be among the main beneficiaries next week when international leaders are set to authorise up to $650bn of new ‘Special Drawing Rights’ to help countries badly hit by the Covid pandemic.at the International Monetary Fund’s spring meeting on 5 April. 
Global Europe 29-03-2021

Failure to fund Syrian refugee crisis could prompt new migration, warn UN officials

Failure to properly fund humanitarian aid missions could lead to another wave of Syrian refugees fleeing to Europe, UN officials have warned ahead of an EU-hosted donor summit this week.
EU-Africa 26-03-2021

Healthcare should be at heart of EU-Africa partnership, say MEPs

EU-Africa relations should prioritise healthcare as part of a new partnership of equals, EU lawmakers said as they set out their priorities for talks on a ‘strategic partnership’ between the two continents.
Economy & Jobs 25-03-2021

Transatlantic economic ties face ‘rare opportunity’ for reset

US-EU economic relations are poised to bounce back from the COVID-19 pandemic and the tensions caused by the Trump administration, according to a new report by the American Chambers of Commerce.
Global Europe 24-03-2021

The Brief, powered by FACEBOOK – Syria’s V day

The 10th anniversary of the Syrian uprising passed last week without as much comment as it merited. Next week, the EU will host the fifth international pledging conference tasked with ‘Supporting the Future of Syria and the Region,’ also referred to as ‘Brussels V’.
Brexit 23-03-2021

The Brief, powered by FACEBOOK – From bad deal to no deal

"Once we have left the EU and have a new trade deal, then we will be friends again." So said many a Brexiteer over the last five years. That argument always struck this reporter as spectacularly naïve, almost as naïve as the notion that both sides would follow the principle of rational self-interest in the negotiations.