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Scotland’s future as a strong and vibrant EU member state

EU Active - 24 juli, 2014 - 12:02

Scottish citizens head to the polls on 18 September to vote on independence in a referendum. An independent Scotland will play a constructive role in addressing some of the central challenges facing the EU, writes Fiona Hyslop.

ECB website hacked, data stolen

EU Active - 24 juli, 2014 - 12:00

The European Central Bank (ECB) said on Thursday its website had been hacked and some email addresses and other contact information stolen but insisted no market-sensitive data were affected.

The theft came to light after the central bank received an anonymous email on Monday night demanding money in exchange for the addresses.

While most of the data was encrypted, parts of the database included email addresses, some street addresses and phone numbers that were not encrypted. The database also contains data on downloads from the ECB website in encrypted form.

[Ticker] EU abstentions clear way for UN enquiry on Gaza

EU Observer - 24 juli, 2014 - 11:59
The eight EU states which hold seats on the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva - Austria, the Czech Republic, Estonia, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, and Romania - Wednesday abstained in a vote on launching an enquiry into Israeli actions in Gaza. The US was the only member voting No.


Ryanair ordered to repay €10m in French state aid

EU Active - 24 juli, 2014 - 11:59

Two low-cost airlines must repay almost €10 million of French state aid, after the EU Commission decided that it gave them an unfair competitive advantage. EurActiv France reports.

Ryanair has been given its marching orders. On 23 July, the European Commission told the Irish airline to return almost €10 million in French state aid which was granted to improve services in three regional airports.

[Ticker] EU commission delaying GMO decision for 14 years

EU Observer - 24 juli, 2014 - 11:34
The EU commission has been sitting on several decisions on imports and cultivation of genetically modified organisms for years - in one case for 14 years - said US ambassador in Brussels, Anthony Gardner. Washington wants the EU to stick to its rules even if some member states oppose GMOs.


[Ticker] US willing to give EU citizens same rights on data privacy

EU Observer - 24 juli, 2014 - 11:33
The US administration is preparing legislation that would grant EU citizens the same rights as American citizens have to sue in US courts when their data privacy was breached by law enforcement authorities, the US ambassador to the EU, Anthony Luzzatto Gardner, told journalists in Brussels on Thursday.


Blog Summary

Open Europe - 24 juli, 2014 - 11:00
The EU's possible new sanctions on Russia: What 'burden sharing'?

CIA ran secret torture jail in Poland, rules European Court of Human Rights

EU Active - 24 juli, 2014 - 10:54

The European Court of Human Rights ruled on Thursday (24 July) that the CIA ran a secret jail on Polish soil, a judgment that adds to pressure on the United States and its allies to reveal the truth about the global programme for detaining al Qaeda suspects.

The United States has acknowledged the existence of its "extraordinary rendition" scheme in the years after the September 11, 2001 attacks but has never revealed which of its allies hosted the secret detention facilities.

[Ticker] US ambassador expects clarity on EU sanctions

EU Observer - 24 juli, 2014 - 10:53
US ambassador to the EU Anthony Gardner Thursday said "many countries are watching the EU" as its ambassadors discuss economic sanctions against Russia. Washington welcomed an EU decision to progress to financial, energy and defence sanctions if Moscow continues to arm Ukrainian rebels after the downing of a passenger plane.


Jobs and social security needed as income inequality widens, UNDP warns

EU Active - 24 juli, 2014 - 10:34

More investment in jobs and social security, and the introduction of laws that offer vulnerable people greater protection, are required to halt the slowing of human development caused by income inequality, fluctuations in food prices, natural disasters and conflict.

The universal provision of basic social services and targeted support for disadvantaged groups, such as women, people with disabilities, older people and minority groups, is a key plank of the flagship report of the UN Development Programme (UNDP).

'Novel foods' regulation returns to the EU's agenda

EU Active - 24 juli, 2014 - 10:32

The European Commission and Parliament are renewing their attempt to update the EU's regulation on novel foods, which was rejected three years ago over ethical and safety concerns related to animal cloning for food production.

The EU regulation on novel foods, which dates back to 1997, is up for a review again, after a last-chance conciliation in March 2011 failed to reach agreement on the use of cloned animals' offspring for food production.

Bulgarian government resigns without nominating a Commissioner

EU Active - 24 juli, 2014 - 09:05

As expected, the minority Bulgarian government resigned yesterday (23 July), following months of political agony. The only surprise appears to be that the cabinet failed at its last session to nominate a Commissioner, leaving this task to the caretaker cabinet.

[Ticker] Bulgarian PM resigns

EU Observer - 24 juli, 2014 - 08:39
Bulgaria's Socialist PM Plamen Oresharski handed in the resignation of his cabinet Wednesday ahead of snap elections on 5 October. The embattled PM had been under pressure to resign after the Socialists did poorly in the May EU vote. An interim government is set to take over in August.


[Ticker] Germany rejects calls to scrap Russia's 2018 World Cup

EU Observer - 24 juli, 2014 - 08:31
The German government on Wednesday rejected calls to stop Russia from hosting the 2018 World Cup. The vice-chair of Germany's CDU party, Michael Fuchs, had earlier floated the idea of hosting the event jointly in Germany, France and Italy as an additional sanction against Russia.


[Ticker] Greek economy to grow 0.7%

EU Observer - 24 juli, 2014 - 08:30
Greece’s economy should grow 0.7% this year, after six years of recession the country's leading thinktank said Wednesday, reports Reuters. The IOBE research institute said that the average unemployment rate will remain a high 26.7%, and said this was due to the public sector lay-offs demanded by the country's creditors.


[Ticker] Dutch mayor calls for Putin's daughter to be deported

EU Observer - 24 juli, 2014 - 08:28
The Dutch mayor of the city of Hilversum on radio on Wednesday said Russian President Putin's daughter should be kicked out of the country, reports the Guardian.The 29-year old Maria Putin is said to live in Voorschoten with her boyfriend. The mayor later apologised on twitter for his remarks.


[Ticker] EU orders Ryanair to pay back millions in French subsidies

EU Observer - 24 juli, 2014 - 08:26
The European Commission wants Ryanair to repay some €10 million in illegal state aid, reports The Irish Times. The Dublin-based company had received French state support for operating airports in Nimes, Pau Pyrenees, and Angouleme. Ryanair said it would appeal the commission's decision.


EU readies new sanctions on defiant Russia

EU Observer - 24 juli, 2014 - 08:25
EU ambassadors meeting in Brussels on Thursday are set to discuss a raft of new sanctions on Russia, as Moscow has shown no signs of wanting to meet an EU ultimatum over Ukraine.


Czech coalition nominates Regional Funds minister for Commissioner

EU Active - 24 juli, 2014 - 07:59

After tough negotiations, the Czech coalition agreed to nominate Regional Development Minister Věra Jourová for EU Commissioner, apparently taking into account the request by elected Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker that more women should be included in the next EU executive. EurActiv Czech Republic reports.

German Gaza protests turn violent, raising anti-Semitism fears

EU Active - 24 juli, 2014 - 07:59

Violence, hate speech, self-immolation: the Middle East conflict has reached Germany, with observers worrying that riots during recent Gaza demonstrations are an expression of deeply rooted anti-Semitism. EurActiv Germany reports.

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