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Conflict minerals: the bloody truth behind your smartphone

Plenary Session External/international trade21-03-2017 - 13:10
 

High-tech equipment such as smartphones, tablets and cars are able to run thanks to minerals and metals such as tin, tungsten, tantalum and gold. However, as their mining and illegal trade are often controlled by armed groups, they also help to feed a vicious circle of conflicts.On 16 March MEPs voted in favour of making EU companies take responsibility for the origin of the minerals they import. Watch our video for more details. (Read more: Conflict minerals: the bloody truth behind your smartphone )

 

Future of the EU: Parliament gives the floor to citizens

Plenary Session Future of Europe/European integration / Institutions20-03-2017 - 18:40
60 Rome: citizens' parliament  

The Treaty of Rome, signed sixty years ago, paved the way for economic integration and lasting peace on our continent and led to today’s European Union of more than 500 million citizens. In recent weeks MEPs have been reflecting on the progress achieved and the way forward, but they are also keen to hear from citizens. People from across Europe are invited to Parliament on 21 March to share their views on the European Union. Follow the debate live online. (Read more: Future of the EU: Parliament gives the floor to citizens )

 

March plenary: safe food, melting ice caps and a prejudice that won’t go away

Plenary Session External/international trade / Environment / Food safety17-03-2017 - 11:03
 

Modern threats and ancient prejudices dominated Parliament’s March 2017 plenary session. The need to ensure that our food is safe was debated as were the threats and opportunities of melting polar ice. At the same time, the inequality still facing women in the workplace was underlined and an MEP who berated women punished, while most MEPs called on Europe to step in and replace the funds the United States is withdrawing from NGOs offering abortions in developing countries. (Read more: March plenary: safe food, melting ice caps and a prejudice that won’t go away )

 

Arctic: ban oil drilling and mitigate tensions, urge MEPs

Plenary Session External relations / Environment16-03-2017 - 12:44
Picture of iceland glacier lagoon bay  

Climate change is bringing new environmental and security challenges in the Arctic, as the melting ice cap opens up new navigation and fishing routes, and competition for its natural resources heats up, say MEPs in a resolution voted on Thursday. They call for measures to protect the vulnerable Arctic ecosystem, ban oil drilling there and keep it a low-tension and cooperation area. (Read more: Arctic: ban oil drilling and mitigate tensions, urge MEPs )

 

MEPs welcome 2016 reform efforts in Montenegro

Plenary Session External relations16-03-2017 - 12:34

Montenegro made further progress in its EU accession negotiations last year, topping the list of the most advanced EU accession countries, but corruption and organised crime remain a serious concern, said MEPs on Thursday. MEPs also highlight Russia’s attempts to influence developments in Montenegro, as it pursues Euro-Atlantic integration. (Read more: MEPs welcome 2016 reform efforts in Montenegro )

 

Defence: MEPs urge member states to show political will and join forces

Plenary Session Security and defence16-03-2017 - 12:28

Increasing defence cooperation in the EU now depends more upon the political will to make it happen than upon legal considerations, say MEPs in a resolution approved by Parliament on Thursday. They stress that member states can and should use the treaty tools in place to build a truly common defence policy. (Read more: Defence: MEPs urge member states to show political will and join forces )

 

Conflict minerals: MEPs secure due diligence obligations for importers

Plenary Session External/international trade16-03-2017 - 12:21
African gold mine  

A draft EU regulation to prevent the minerals trade from funding conflict and human rights violations was approved by MEPs on Thursday. This “conflict minerals” law will oblige all but the smallest EU importers of tin, tungsten, tantalum, gold to do "due diligence" checks on their suppliers, and big manufacturers will also have to disclose how they plan to monitor their sources to comply with the rules. (Read more: Conflict minerals: MEPs secure due diligence obligations for importers )

 

Human rights: Zimbabwe, Ukrainian political prisoners in Russia, and Philippines

Plenary Session Humanitarian aid / Development and cooperation / External relations16-03-2017 - 12:15

Parliament deplores the arrest of Pastor Evan Mawarire and political violence against human rights defenders in Zimbabwe, calls for the release of Ukrainians illegally detained in Russia and urges the Philippines to release human rights advocate Senator Leila M. De Lima, detained on drug-trafficking charges, in three resolutions voted on Thursday. (Read more: Human rights: Zimbabwe, Ukrainian political prisoners in Russia, and Philippines )

 

Infographic: MEPs want to boost European defence by increasing cooperation

Plenary Session Security and defence16-03-2017 - 11:07
infographic illustration on benefits of closer cooperationon defence at EU level  

EU countries could achieve more on defence by pooling resources and coordinating their planning. Billions of euros are wasted every year due to duplication, overcapacity and barriers to procurement. MEPs adopted a report on it in plenary on 16 March. Defence cooperation is becoming more important because of increasing security challenges in Europe and the US pushing its European partners to invest more in defence. (Read more: Infographic: MEPs want to boost European defence by increasing cooperation )

 

MEPs commemorate Brussels terror attack victims, stress need to step up security

Plenary Session Institutions / Justice and home affairs15-03-2017 - 18:01

MEPs examined progress made in fighting terrorism since the 22 March 2016 attacks in Brussels in Wednesday afternoon’s “topical debate”. They stressed the need to do more to ensure swift and efficient information sharing among member states and improve the interoperability of EU databases, as well as to prevent radicalization and help victims of terrorism. (Read more: MEPs commemorate Brussels terror attack victims, stress need to step up security )

 
 
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