Elections

19-03-2019

EU country briefing: Slovenia

Slovenia was the first Balkan country to join the EU, during 2004’s big enlargement round, after this was supported by a double referendum on both EU and NATO membership, which were supported by 89.6% and 66% respectively.
EU Elections 2019 18-03-2019

Stanishev loses leadership of European elections list to former partner

Sergei Stanishev may be the leader of the Party of European Socialists (PES), but his authority in his home country Bulgaria is under pressure.
Enlargement 18-03-2019

Pressure builds in Belgrade, EU calls for dialogue with civil society

Thousands of anti-government protesters staged a rally outside President Aleksandar Vučić’s residence on Sunday (17 March) to press their demands for greater media freedom and free and fair elections, a day after they briefly broke into the state television building.
15-03-2019

Slovak entrepreneur charged with ordering journalist murder

Slovak prosecutors said Thursday (15 March) they had charged an entrepreneur with ordering the murder of an investigative journalist whose killing during a corruption probe triggered mass protests and toppled the country's prime minister.
EU Elections 2019 15-03-2019

Orbán apologises to EPP leaders he called ‘useful idiots’

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has apologised to European conservative parties for calling them "useful idiots" over an anti-EU billboard campaign that could see his party ejected from the European Parliament's dominant centre-right EPP bloc.
14-03-2019

EU country briefing: Croatia

Croatia is the EU´s youngest member, having only joined in 2013 following a referendum in the country in which 66% voted in favour. Its membership was considered an important step for stabilising the Balkan region that experienced war and conflict between 1991-2001.
13-03-2019

EU country briefing: Italy

Italy is a founding member of European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC) in 1952, which paved the way to the EU. It joined the eurozone (1999) (despite not meeting the Euro convergence criteria) and since the start and Schengen in 1997. It is the 3rd largest Member State (60.6 million) by population, representing 13.6% of all EU citizens (without the UK). 76 (10.8%) out of the 705 Members of the European Parliament (MEP) are elected in Italy.
EU Elections 2019 12-03-2019

Inauguration of the Franco-German assembly on 25 March

Tasked with implementing the so-called Aachen Treaty, the binational chamber is set to be launched amidst tense Franco-German relations.
11-03-2019

EU country briefing: Sweden

Sweden joined the EU only in 1995 and a year later also became part of the Schengen area. However, it is one of the six EU countries that are not part of NATO and it also refuses to join the eurozone, following a referendum in 2003, in which people voted against adopting the common currency. This has resulted in a de-facto opt-out.
08-03-2019

EU country briefing: Portugal

Portugal joined the EU, together with its neighbour Spain, in 1986, and has been part of the Schengen (1995) and eurozone (1999) areas since their creation.

Romania indicts Kövesi for a second time while MEPs back her for EU prosecutor

The European Parliament officially backed Romanian magistrate Laura Codruța Kövesi to become the EU’s first-ever top prosecutor on Thursday (7 March), while in Bucharest, she was summoned to court and indicted for a second time.
EU Elections 2019 07-03-2019

If you can’t beat them, ban them: Romanian electoral bureau rejects Ciolos’s alliance

The Central Electoral Bureau (BEC) rejected on Thursday (7 March) the joint application for the European elections of the “Alliance 2020 USR PLUS”. The news had the effect of a bomb in Romania, writes Dan Alexe, who runs a blog called EUelectionsRomania.com.
EU Elections 2019 07-03-2019

Hungary plays down the EPP demand for apology as ‘an opinion’

Hungary defied demands to apologise on Wednesday (6 March) for vitriolic criticism of EU leaders, but a senior government aide suggested it was seeking compromise to avoid its ruling party’s ejection from the main conservative group in the European Parliament....
EU Elections 2019 06-03-2019

Feminism is the word in Spain’s electoral campaign

Women's rights have taken centre stage in election campaigns for Spain's left- and right-wing parties as International Women's Day approaches even as ultra-conservative groups hit back at what they dub "radical feminism."
EU Elections 2019 06-03-2019

Weber gives Orbán chance to apologise and remain in EPP

The Spitzenkandidat of the main centre-right party for the European elections said on Tuesday (5 March) that Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán must apologise for his criticism of the EU or his ruling Fidesz party could be suspended from the grouping.
EU Elections 2019 05-03-2019

Fidesz exclusion officially on EPP’s agenda for 20 March

Twelve national members of the centre-right European People's Party (EPP) have officially requested the exclusion of Hungary's populist Prime Minister Viktor Orbán and his party Fidesz, the EPP's leader said on Monday (4 March).
Politics 05-03-2019

Pro-EU coalition narrowly leads Polish polls

Poland's newly established pro-EU alliance 'European Coalition' leads the latest EU election polls with 37.5% of the vote. Ultra-conservative ruling party Law and Justice (PiS) sits on 36.3%, according to the second seat projections released by the European Parliament. EURACTIV Poland reports.
EU Elections 2019 04-03-2019

Pro-EU opposition wins Estonian elections, far right makes big gains

Estonia's opposition centre-right Reform party pulled off a surprise win over Prime Minister Juri Ratas' governing centre-left Centre party in parliamentary elections held on Sunday (3 March).
EU Elections 2019 04-03-2019

Italy’s Democratic Party leans left under new leader Zingaretti

Supporters of Italy's fractured centre-left opposition Democratic Party (PD) on Sunday (3 March) elected Nicola Zingaretti as new leader, an ex-communist son of a bank manager who will now take on the ruling populist coalition led by the far-right Lega.
EU Elections 2019 04-03-2019

Hungary to replace Juncker with Timmermans in poster campaign

Hungary's government announced Saturday (2 March) that it would end a controversial poster campaign accusing US philanthropist George Soros and European Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker of supporting illegal migration.
01-03-2019

EU country briefing: Spain

Spain joined the EU in 1986, and has since then subscribed to each EU treaty, including ratifying in referendum of the Constitutional Treaty in 2005. With a population of circa 46,5 million people, it is the 4th largest of the EU, representing 10.4% of all EU citizens (after Brexit).
Politics 01-03-2019

Critical mass building for motion to expel Orbán from EPP

A critical mass is likely to be reached within days to put the expulsion of Viktor Orbán’s Fidesz party from the centre-right European Peoples Party (EPP) to a vote. The decision could be taken ahead of a crucial meeting on 20 March.
Politics 01-03-2019

Romania summons Kövesi in court in attempt to thwart her designation

Romanian magistrate Laura Codruța Kövesi, a hot favourite to become the EU's first-ever top prosecutor, is due to appear in court in Bucharest next week over allegations of corruption, media reports said Thursday (28 February).
Politics 28-02-2019

Commission responds to Orbán’s latest anti-immigration campaign

The European Commission reacted strongly on Thursday (28 February) to a new anti-immigration campaign launched by Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán earlier this week by saying it "distorts the truth" and refuting most of its points.

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