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Updated: 35 min 5 sec ago
Most EU countries abuse the rights of migrants and ethnic minorities, while others are not doing enough to combat homophobia, Amnesty International has said.
- [Focus] Report: sexual minorities in EU face hate speech, violence and discrimination
- [Focus] Targeted action requires clear plan … LGBTI issues are no different
- [Focus] EU ministers urge Reding to do more for gay rights
Germany is helping youngsters from Spain, Portugal and Greece to find jobs, as regional statistics show 17 times more unemployed young Greeks compared to Germans.
- German politicians outraged at Orban's Nazi jibe
- Austria, Luxembourg to play ball in tax clampdown
- [Opinion] The real significance of Germany's eurosceptic party
IMF chief Christine Lagarde is Thursday appearing for questioning at a court in Paris in a criminal probe into whether public funds were misused when she served as France's finance minister. She took a case of French tycoon Bernard Tapie to an arbitration panel, who awarded the businessman €420 million.
Italy's national statistics agency ISTAT on Wednesday published its Annual Report 2013 saying 8.6 million Italians are in such “serious economic difficulty” that they have stopped basic expenditure, such as buying meat or heating their homes. Among the 18-24 aged, 89 percent are financially reliant on their parents.
Germany will back a British request to blacklist Hezbollah following the terrorist attack in Burgas, Bulgaria last summer, Reuters reports. "Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle supports listing at least the military wing of Hezbollah as a terrorist organization in the EU," a German diplomatic source said.
Norwegian foreign minister Barth Eide has in a letter to Norwegian MPs indicated the UN Security Council should consider sanctions on Russian officials linked to the alleged murder of whistleblower accountant Magnitsky. He described the case as "symbolic" of a wider trend in Russia, including its crackdown on foreign-funded NGOs.
EU leaders in Brussels for a summit on tax evasion hailed new political "momentum," but agreed few concrete measures.
- [Focus] A technology revolution at school
- Ireland on the defensive in Apple tax row
- Delay austerity and increase investment, IMF warns UK
EU enlargement chief Fuele and foreign policy head Ashton have told Georgia they expect to see a "fair, transparent and independent" trial after the arrest of former PM Merabishvili and former health minister Chiaberashvili on charges of embezzlement and abuse of office, in events recalling Ukraine's crackdown on opposition leaders.
Iceland's new ruling coalition has put its EU accession bid on ice pending a referendum. Its incoming PM Daviv Gunnlaugsson told press on Wednesday: "The government intends to halt negotiations between Iceland and the European Union. We will not hold further negotiations with the European Union without prior referendum."
EU leaders have said shale gas could make a big contribution to lower energy costs, pushing aside environmental concerns.
- [Analysis] Cold War politics hang over EU shale gas revolution
- [Agenda] EU leaders discuss energy and tax next WEEK
- Charity attacks EU "hypocrisy" on tax evasion
Germany is starting a series of conferences and bilateral programmes with Spain, Portugal and Greece to help them with youth employment schemes. "It would be a quite desirable side effect" if the move also helped improve Germany's austerity-driven image at EU level, finance minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said Wednesday.
MEPs Wednesday demanded guarantees that the European Central Bank's supervisory arm will be directly accountable to the European Parliament. Although the Parliament does not have co-decision powers on the ECB regulation, it is withholding its support for parallel reforms to the European Banking Authority