Western Europe

Politics 19-01-2022

EU Court slams Austrian naturalisation practice

The practice of turning down citizenship applications that would result in EU citizens losing bloc citizenship violates EU law, the Court of Justice of the EU has ruled. The ruling comes after the practice of Austria’s public naturalisation authorities rendered...
Politics 19-01-2022

Le Pen lays out her vision of Europe

Marine Le Pen, leader of the far-right Rassemblement National party, detailed her idea for a “Europe of nations”, which she said contradicts the “worrying” project of President Emmanuel Macron. Le Pen wants to build a “European alliance of nations“, the...
Politics 19-01-2022

Germany has ‘not forgotten Russia is the aggressor’, says defence minister

Germany’s stance on the buildup of Russian troops at the Ukrainian border is clear, the country’s defence minister Christine Lambrecht said on Tuesday after meeting NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg in Berlin. Her comments came amid a series of course changes...
Politics 18-01-2022

Zemmour fined for provoking racial hatred, again

The Paris Criminal Court slapped far-right candidate Éric Zemmour Monday with a €10,000 fine for his comments on young migrants. He will appeal this decision, which he considers “ideological and stupid”. The judgement against Zemmour follows comments he made about...
Politics 18-01-2022

Austria seeks Germany’s support for return to strict budgetary rules

Austrian Finance Minister Magnus Brunner said he has high hopes Germany will support the frugal countries for a swift return to the EU’s strict budgetary rules once the COVID-19 pandemic is under control. On the other hand, his Portuguese counterpart...
Politics 17-01-2022

Austria presents February mandatory vaccination law amid protests

Vaccination against the COVID-19 could be mandatory starting in February as per a new law presented Sunday as large-scale protests rocked several Austrian cities. “Mandatory vaccination starts in February,” said Austrian Chancellor Karl Nehammer as he presented the new law...
Politics 17-01-2022

French lawmakers give vaccine pass final OK

The French National Assembly has adopted the bill introducing the vaccine pass on Sunday evening. The pass will come into force by the end of the week,  replacing the sanitary pass, and granting access to restaurants, transport, venues that will...
Politics 17-01-2022

Germany ‘cautiously optimistic’ over revitalisation of Normandy talks

German foreign minister Annalena Baerbock will visit Ukraine and Russia on Monday to defuse rising tensions at the Ukrainian border and revitalise the Normandy format in an attempt to ensure that the EU is not sidelined in the negotiations. The...
Politics 14-01-2022

Greens and Social Democrats announce referendum for a Swiss Green New Deal

The presidents of two Swiss political parties announced on Thursday they would join forces to launch a popular initiative to amend the constitution focusing on climate.
Politics 14-01-2022

French teachers, school staff go on strike in protest at sanitary measures

While unions announced a “historical mobilisation” with 75% of teachers on strike to protest against the management of COVID protocols in schools, only 31% of teachers were actually absent on Thursday, the French education ministry said. The participation was certainly lower...
Politics 14-01-2022

Scholz and Rutte show united front on Ukraine, COVID-19

During the first visit of Dutch PM Mark Rutte to Berlin to meet with Chancellor Olaf Scholz, the two affirmed their agreement on issues like Ukraine, the fight against COVID-19, and economic transformation, but differed on nuclear energy. “We have...
Politics 13-01-2022

Use of Google Analytics violates EU law, Austrian authority rules

The Austrian Data Protection Authority has decided that the use of Google Analytics violates the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Other EU member states could follow suit, as regulators cooperate in a task force in the European Data Protection Board....
Politics 13-01-2022

Violence against elected officials increases in France

The violent attack on the French MP Stéphane Claireaux at his home on 9 January has put the issue of threats, harassment, and attacks on elected representatives back in the spotlight. These are increasing at a worrying rate, both in number and...
Politics 13-01-2022

Scholz: Overlap of German G7 and French EU presidency ‘is very good’

“It is very good” that France holds the EU council presidency while Germany holds the G7 presidency, Chancellor Olaf Scholz told the German parliament on 12 January. During the traditional Q&A session between MPs and the government, Scholz was asked...
Politics 12-01-2022

Dutch lack trust in new coalition, survey shows

There is a general lack of trust in the new Dutch coalition, even among voters of the parties currently in government, a survey conducted by the research company I&O Research shows. The new Dutch coalition, consisting of the same four...
Politics 12-01-2022

One in ten Austrians could lose their vaccination status in February

More than 900,000 Austrians, or about 10% of the population, risk losing their vaccination status if they do not get their second or booster shot before February. This is because, from February, COVID certificates will be valid for six months...
Politics 12-01-2022

Ex-minister: Scholz should call confidence vote over mandatory vaccination

German chancellor Olaf Scholz should hold a vote of confidence in the Bundestag, former conservative transport minister Andreas Scheuer said on Tuesday, amid disputes over potential mandatory vaccines. It is a “matter of character at this point” to call a...
Politics 11-01-2022

Austria intensifies controls of adherence to COVID rules

Starting from Tuesday, store and restaurant owners will be subject to intense police controls on whether they check the COVID certificate of their customers. Interior minister Gerhard Karner said the measure is necessary to convince the “incorrigible” to abide by...
Politics 11-01-2022

Taubira to run for French presidential elections if she wins citizen-led primary

Former MEP and Justice Minister Christiane Taubira announced she would only run in the French presidential elections if she were nominated by the Popular Primary, a citizens’ initiative. According to her, the primary represents “the last chance for a possible...
Politics 11-01-2022

Mega cruise shipbuilder with facilities in Germany files for bankruptcy

MV Werften, a massive shipbuilding company with facilities in the German state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern employing around 1,900 workers, filed for bankruptcy on Monday. The wharf is a core part of the shipbuilding industry central to the state and was working...
Politics 10-01-2022

German government parties drag feet on mandatory vaccine vote

The two biggest parties in Germany’s government coalition – Olaf Scholz’s Social Democrats (SPD) and the Greens – are in no hurry to call a parliamentary vote on mandatory vaccination despite both supporting it. Germany’s new government has considered compulsory...
Politics 10-01-2022

Former right-wing vice-president drops Pécresse to join Zemmour

Guillaume Peltier, former vice-president of right-wing party Les Républicains, announced he will rally behind far-right presidential candidate Éric Zemmour, on Sunday According to him, Zemmour is the only candidate “capable of beating Emmanuel Macron”. Peltier, who was ousted from Les Républicains...
Politics 10-01-2022

Mandatory vaccination suffers setback in Austria

Due to technical complications, the registration of mandatory vaccines will only be possible by April, two months later than envisioned by the Austrian government. Meanwhile, experts are questioning the effectiveness of mandatory vaccinations. The technical implementation of mandatory vaccinations will...
Politics 07-01-2022

Austria introduces new COVID-19 measures to fight Omicron

Austria will implement new measures to fight the spread of the Omicron variant and rise in COVID-19 cases but will relax others due to Omicron being less dangerous than previous variants, the government has announced. The new measures were announced after...