EUobserver

Austrian soldiers to stop migrants from Italy

Austria is sending soldiers to stop migrants coming from Italy, while Bulgaria has said the EU should “defend” its borders by “force of arms”.

Austria said it would deploy 70 soldiers, but no armoured vehicles, at the Brenner Pass to Italy on Thursday (17 ...

2017-08-17 10:27 open_in_new
A Chinese road to riches or a road to ruin?

News emerged earlier this week that the EU is looking to more rigorously screen foreign takeovers of European companies.

The move comes amid growing concerns about an influx of Chinese investment into Europe’s manufacturing, energy and infrastructure sectors.

Since 2013, ...

2017-08-17 08:15 open_in_new
UK seeks 'unprecedented' Irish border deal

The UK is to call for a “unique” deal on its Irish border, one day after its ideas on post-Brexit EU trade were branded a “fantasy”.

The British government said in a briefing note on Tuesday (15 August) that there must be no return to the watchtowers and fences ...

2017-08-16 11:21 open_in_new
Merkel: No EU sanctions on migrant quota rebels

Angela Merkel has refused to link refugee-sharing to the EU budget as she embarked on her campaign to secure a fourth term as Germany’s leader.

The Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, and Slovakia are blocking the redistribution of refugees via obligatory EU quotas, leaving Greece and ...

2017-08-15 11:09 open_in_new
UK keen to keep old EU customs deal

Britain wants to keep its EU customs privileges after Brexit but also wants the freedom to negotiate other trade deals.

The position on an “interim” customs pact to enter into force after the UK quits the EU in March 2019 was outlined in a British government statement on ...

2017-08-15 11:09 open_in_new
Italy backs Libya as NGOs chased out of Mediterranean

Italy has endorsed Libya’s decision to chase NGOs out of coastal waters in what one charity called “an unacceptable assault on people’s lives and dignity”.

Angelino Alfano, Italy’s foreign minister, told La Stampa, an Italian newspaper, on Sunday (13 ...

2017-08-14 10:57 open_in_new
Egg scare prompts review of EU alert systems

The European Commission has called a “high-level” meeting on the egg health scare that has struck 15 EU states so far.

The health commissioner, Vytenis Andriukaitis, is to discuss how to improve EU alert systems with health ministers and national food safety agencies in ...

2017-08-11 18:03 open_in_new
Airbnb too 'different' to pay EU tax

US home rentals firm Airbnb has said it was “fundamentally different” in reaction to French calls for it to pay more tax in Europe.

The San Fransisco, US-based company, which provides an online platform for people to rent out rooms, paid less than €100,000 in tax in ...

2017-08-11 11:27 open_in_new
Taking control of the red-tape revolution

The publication on Tuesday (8 August) of a draft bill to transfer the EU’s Data Protection Regulation - which establishes tighter controls on the processing of personal data, and gives individuals greater rights to access it - into law, well before the UK leaves the EU in 2019, was not a ...

2017-08-11 10:21 open_in_new
EU defends Commissioners' travel costs

The European Commission has defended its use of air taxis for international meetings despite costs of tens of thousands of euros.

The revelations came after Spanish NGO Access Info and Belgian magazine Knack published details of commissioners’ travel costs for January and February ...

2017-08-10 11:13 open_in_new
EU calls for dialogue in US-North Korea nuclear row

The EU reacted cautiously on Wednesday (9 August) to US threats against North Korea, calling for dialogue and stressing Korean responsibility in the escalating tension.

The situation is "of great concern to the EU as it is for the rest of international community," European Commission ...

2017-08-09 18:43 open_in_new
Holiday season means risk of tropical diseases in Europe

Warmer weather and summer travel put tropical mosquito-borne diseases on the European health authorities’ radar.

The warming climate has unpredictable and wide-ranging impacts on the environment. Some climate effects on human health are direct, such as extreme weather and rising sea ...

2017-08-09 18:43 open_in_new
Migrants face 'slavery, torture and death' in Libya

The UN has backed Italy's naval mission in Libyan waters to curb human trafficking, just as Oxfam said in a report that the effort creates a "vicious cycle" of abuse and death for migrants.

Ghassan Salame, the UN special envoy to Libya, said on Tuesday (8 August) that "cooperation and ...

2017-08-09 09:55 open_in_new
EU needs a lasting solution to the refugee crisis

In the summer of 2015, images of the hundreds of thousands of refugees arriving on Europe’s shores dominated the front pages of European newspapers.

Journalists from every major publication were themselves migrating daily to new flashpoints, border fences or makeshift camps ...

2017-08-09 08:49 open_in_new
Spain’s government prepares to stop Catalan breakaway vote

Less than two months ahead of a planned independence referendum in Catalonia, Spanish government ministers are braced for having their holidays interrupted by separatist moves.

Prime minister Mariano Rajoy has said he would call them back for an extraordinary cabinet meeting if the ...

2017-08-08 14:05 open_in_new
Germany to restart sending migrants back to Greece

Germany is to send back asylum seekers to Greece, ending a five-year suspension of the EU’s asylum rules on transfers because of poor reception conditions.

Greek migration minister Yiannis Mouzalas, speaking to the German public television channel ARD, in a program due to air on ...

2017-08-07 19:23 open_in_new
Bad information increases contaminated eggs scare

The Belgian parliament is to hold an extraordinary meeting over the spread of contaminated eggs, as new information has raised questions on the efficiency of the EU's alert system.

Belgian agriculture and health ministers Denis Ducarme and Maggie De Block will be heard by MEPs on Wednesday ...

2017-08-07 16:05 open_in_new
UK will have to pay beyond Brexit, EU warns

The EU's budget commissioner has warned that the UK would have to pay into the EU’s coffers until at least 2020, even after it has left the bloc in March 2019.

Guenther Oettinger told the German newspaper Bild on Monday (7 August) that Britain is obligated to honour commitments it ...

2017-08-07 10:35 open_in_new
Spain turns its back on migrant children's rights

At this very moment, some children in Spain are being held in adult immigration detention centres, pending return to their home countries.

Other migrant children are living on the streets in Madrid and other Spanish cities, suffering from serious illnesses, or are prevented from applying ...

2017-08-07 09:29 open_in_new
Irish PM proposes EU-UK custom union after Brexit

The Irish prime minister has proposed an EU-UK custom union and a transition period for the UK as a way of keeping an economic open border between Ireland and Northern Ireland after Brexit.

"If the United Kingdom does not want to stay in the [EU] customs union, perhaps there can be an ...

2017-08-04 16:35 open_in_new
Young Poles can halt Kaczynski’s illiberal march

Poland’s youngest generations have normally been the biggest group absent from pro-democratic marches.

With a notable exception of last year’s Black Marches, against tightening the anti-abortion law, young Poles remained largely reluctant to act publicly.

But that has ...

2017-08-04 13:17 open_in_new