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External relations

 

Union for the Mediterranean: time for parliaments to play their role

Others Development and cooperation / External relations05-04-2013 - 06:53
 

EP president Martin Schulz will plead for parliaments to play a greater role in facilitating Arab Spring countries' transition to democracy during a meeting of the Union of the Mediterranean in Marseille on 6-7 April. Mr Schulz will meet the parliament presidents of all the countries that belong to this partnership that unites both shores of the Mediterranean to discuss how they can help further the Union's goals. This will be the Union's first-ever meeting of Parliament speakers. (Read more: Union for the Mediterranean: time for parliaments to play their role )

 
 

MEPs call for recycling levy to pay for the safe dismantling of ships

Others External relations / Industry / Environment27-03-2013 - 11:23
 

Environment MEPS have called for a recycling levy to pay for EU ships being taken apart at EU-approved facilities in order to reduce the environmental impact and make it safer for the workers involved. Dismantling ships can currently expose workers to cancer-causing chemicals and lead to harmful materials being leaked into the environment. To prevent this, the EP's environment committee approved on Tuesday 26 March new rules on the scrapping of old EU ships. (Read more: MEPs call for recycling levy to pay for the safe dismantling of ships )

 
 

Hugo Chávez: "His passing away may moderate political radicalism"

Others External relations06-03-2013 - 16:01
A boy holds a poster of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez  

The death of Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez is likely to have far reaching implications for how other countries interact with the leftist Bolivarian block led by Venezuela, Ecuador and Bolivia. We talked about this with Luis de Grandes, a Spanish member of the EPP group who is the chair of Parliament's delegation for relations with the countries of the Andean community. (Read more: Hugo Chávez: "His passing away may moderate political radicalism" )

 
 

Myanmar: still a long way to go but on the right track

Others External relations05-03-2013 - 12:22
Werner Langen  

Myanmar is edging its way towards being a modern democracy with a series of reforms after having been under military control since the 1960s. President Thein Sein and foreign minister U Wunna Maung Lwin are in Parliament today to discuss the latest developments. We talked to Werner Langen, who led a parliamentary delegation to Myanmar last year, about the progress the country - formerly known as Burma - has made since then. (Read more: Myanmar: still a long way to go but on the right track )

 
 

MEPs discuss how to go about free-trade agreement with US

Others External/international trade01-03-2013 - 09:05
 

The EU and the US will this year start talks on a free-trade agreement to help boost their economies, but there are many thorny issues to be worked out. Although the deal would increase trade and create jobs, it will require the two regions to reconcile their different approaches to issues such as animal welfare, people's privacy and food safety. It could also affect business with other parts of the world. Watch the video to discover the views of two MEPs with very different perspectives. (Read more: MEPs discuss how to go about free-trade agreement with US )

 
 

Ukraine: reforms to pave the way for association agreement

Others Enlargement / External relations28-02-2013 - 15:53
Ukrainian president Viktor Fedorovych  

EU-Ukraine: still friends? Although the situation was unclear at the end of last year, both sides reconfirmed their willingness to pursue closer ties at the 16th EU-Ukraine summit on 25 February. However, before Ukraine is able to sign an association agreement with the EU this year, it has to show progress by May in several areas, especially election law and its justice system. (Read more: Ukraine: reforms to pave the way for association agreement )

 
 

Future of EU defence: fewer cuts and more cooperation

Others Security and defence27-02-2013 - 12:35
Marine performing military training exercise on a beach  

A military top brass has warned MEPs over further cuts to defence budgets, saying they could prove disastrous to efforts to protect our prosperity and security. "We already passed the line where it was acceptable," said lieutenant general Ton van Osch. The director general of the EU's military staff fired off the warning during a discussion on the future of EU defence organised by the EP's security and defence subcommittee on 26 February. (Read more: Future of EU defence: fewer cuts and more cooperation )

 
 
Juan Fernando López Aguilar  

Hundreds of thousands of refugees have fled the Syrian regime and are now stranded in the Jordanian desert. Juan Fernando López Aguilar, a Spanish member of the S&D group, led a delegation of MEPs to Jordan last week to see first-hand the tragedy behind the headlines. "They dream of returning to their homes," he said. "They are calling on us to act." We spoke to Mr López Aguilar about how the EU could make a difference in this humanitarian crisis that threatens to overwhelm relief efforts. (Read more: The Arab Spring has turned into a nightmare for Syrian refugees - López Aguilar )

 
 

Tunisian president and EP condemn murder of opposition leader

Others Institutions / External relations06-02-2013 - 16:27
Tunisian president Moncef Marzouki  

Tunisian president Moncef Marzouki condemned the assassination of his country's opposition leader Chokri Belaïd in Tunis on Wednesday morning in a speech to MEPs. "This is a threat, a letter being sent to us," he said. "We reject that letter and continue to unmask the enemies of the revolution." EP president Martin Schulz expressed condolences to the Belaïd family and the Tunisian people, confident that "Tunisian authorities will do everything necessary to bring those responsible to justice". (Read more: Tunisian president and EP condemn murder of opposition leader )