Elections

Freedom of thought 25-05-2018

Ireland votes in ‘once-in-a-generation’ abortion referendum

Ireland votes today (25 May) in an abortion referendum that could be a milestone on a path of change in a country that, only a few decades ago, was one of Europe’s most socially conservative.
24-05-2018

Giuseppe Conte approved for Italian prime minister

Italy's president on Wednesday (23 May) approved little-known lawyer Giuseppe Conte's nomination to be prime minister of a government formed by far-right and anti-establishment parties.
23-05-2018

Tajani ups the ante in Spitzenkandidaten controversy

One year ahead of the European Elections, emboldened by a recent opinion poll, the European Parliament made key announcements on Wednesday (23 May), signalling a strong preference for the Spitzenkandidaten system that was rejected by the heads of state and government..
23-05-2018

Luxury home purchase haunts Spain’s far-left Podemos party

Accusations of hypocrisy have rained down on the couple that heads Spain's far-left Podemos party for buying a 600,000-euro luxury home with a swimming pool after previously condemning such extravagance.
22-05-2018

How did EU-founding member Italy go Eurosceptic?

All eyes are on Italy as the far-right League and rebellious Five Star Movement close in on power, ringing alarm bells in Brussels as the country inches towards becoming the first EU founding member to have a euro-sceptic government.
Future EU 22-05-2018

Italian president hesitates as novice put forward as premier

Italy's anti-establishment 5-Star Movement and the far-right League on Monday (21 May) proposed Giuseppe Conte, a little-known law professor, as prime minister to lead their big-spending coalition government.
Enlargement 18-05-2018

Kosovo is not Catalonia, Kosovo’s Thaci tells absent Spanish PM Rajoy

Pristina ‘understands’ the decision of Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy not to attend the EU-Western Balkans summit in Sofia, but “Kosovo is not Catalonia”, Kosovo's President Hashim Thaçi told EURACTIV.com.
18-05-2018

Trans-Europe Express – Having 5-Star in ALDE wasn’t a bad idea

As Italy gets closer to having a cabinet dominated by the 5-Star Movement, the rejection of this force by the liberal ALDE group in January 2017 increasingly looks like a strategic mistake.
Global Europe 18-05-2018

Erdogan mobilises diaspora, ‘friends’ in Balkans

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan holds a rally in the Bosnian capital Sarajevo to drum up support among the Turkish diaspora. Three days after the EU-Western Balkans summit in Sofia, Bulgaria, the Balkans confirm their strategic position.
Future EU 18-05-2018

Bulgarian truckers protest against ‘Macron law’

Hundreds of truck drivers blocked roads across Bulgaria on Thursday (17 May) as European Union leaders met in Sofia, protesting against proposed EU rules they say would cost them their jobs and put their firms out of business.
Future EU 18-05-2018

5-Star, League on verge of reaching government deal

Italy inched closer towards ending more than two months of political deadlock on Thursday (17 May) as anti-establishment leader Luigi Di Maio said he was confident an agreement would be reached on forming a coalition government with the far-right.
16-05-2018

Macron’s party seen outperforming French rivals in 2019 EU elections

French President Emmanuel Macron's party is seen easily outperforming its rivals in next year's European Parliament elections, the first poll on the issue showed on Wednesday (16 May), which could give a boost to his EU reform plans.
Economy & Jobs 16-05-2018

5-Star, League want ECB to forgive €250 billion of Italy debt

The anti-establishment 5-Star Movement and far-right Northern League plan to ask the European Central Bank to forgive €250 billion of Italian debt, according to a draft of a coalition programme the parties are working on.
14-05-2018

Italy’s 5-Star, League talks progress, PM may be in sight

Italy's anti-establishment 5-Star Movement and the far-right League spent the weekend locked in talks to forge a common policy programme and called the head of state on Sunday (13 May) to report on their progress towards naming a prime minister.
Future EU 11-05-2018

Tajani warns compatriots against exiting the euro

This year’s “State of the Union” conference opened in Florence on Friday  (11 May), coinciding with the news that Italy is likely to get a coalition government of two Eurosceptic forces, both keen on leaving the eurozone. Speaking at the event, European Parliament President Antonio Tajani strongly warned Italy against exiting the euro.
Future EU 11-05-2018

Orbán sworn in as PM for third time, eyes 20 more years in power

Fresh from a landslide election win in April, Hungary's combative premier Viktor Orbán was formally sworn in as prime minister Thursday (10 May), and hinted at designs on power until at least 2030.
Future EU 11-05-2018

Italy’s League and 5-Star make ‘significant steps’ towards government deal

The anti-establishment 5-Star Movement and far-right League have made "significant steps" towards forming a government, the two parties said Thursday (10 May) as Italy looked to end nine weeks of political deadlock.
09-05-2018

New Hungary protest as Orbán installs ‘Christian democracy’

Thousands of Hungarians gathered Tuesday (8 May) to protest against strongman Viktor Orbán after he was nominated for re-election as prime minister for a third consecutive term during the inauguration of the new parliament.
Future EU 09-05-2018

European luminaries warn about new phase of EU ‘lethargy’

In an open letter, a number of well-known European public figures have asked EU leaders to come up with a clear plan for a "revival of the European Union", saying they feared “a new phase of lethargy” that could encourage a rise of populist parties in the European elections in May 2019.
07-05-2018

Italy repeat election looms as parties still far apart

The prospect of an election re-run in Italy grew today (7 May) as President Sergio Mattarella held a final round of consultations to try to break two months of political deadlock with party leaders still far apart.
04-05-2018

Trans-Europe Express – Sowing the seeds of discord

Almost certainly to the displeasure of mainstream Brussels, leaders of Europe's far-right parties came together on the French Riviera this week, saying they wanted to devise a battle plan for next year's European election.
Future EU 04-05-2018

Hungary blasts Commission over EU funding ‘blackmail’ plan

Hungary said Thursday (3 May) that a European Union plan to link the bloc's funding payouts to respect for the rule of law amounted to "blackmail", a day after Brussels unveiled its first post-Brexit multi-year budget plan.
Freedom of thought 03-05-2018

Slovak public broadcaster under fire after sacking 4 reporters

Slovakia's public TV and radio broadcaster has come under fire for sacking four reporters last week who had signed an open letter warning of creeping political pressure in state media.
02-05-2018

Czech ruling party says near coalition deal to end limbo

The Czech ruling ANO party could be days away from agreeing the text of a coalition agreement with the center-left Social Democrats, an ANO official was quoted as saying today (2 May), raising hopes for an end to months of political instability.