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External relations

 

Ideas on Ethiopia, former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Eastern Partnership

Plenary Session External relations20-05-2015 - 11:00

The situation in Ethiopia ahead of the 24 May parliamentary elections, the political crisis and killings in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, and preparations for the 21-22 May Riga Eastern Partnership Summit will be discussed with Commissioner Christos Stylianides, the Latvian Presidency, and EU foreign affairs chief Federica Mogherini, from 15.00 on Wednesday. (Read more: Ideas on Ethiopia, former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Eastern Partnership )

 

Financing for development: EU countries to stick to foreign aid commitments

Plenary Session Development and cooperation19-05-2015 - 12:34

MEPs urged EU member countries to respect their Official Development Assistance (ODA) target of 0.7% of national income and to set timetables for reaching it by 2020 in a resolution adopted on Tuesday. They also stressed the need to mobilise domestic resources efficiently in developing countries as a key source of financing. (Read more: Financing for development: EU countries to stick to foreign aid commitments )

 

Conflict minerals: preventing military groups from funding their activities

Others External/international trade19-05-2015 - 10:32
Men work in a gold mine on February 23, 2009 in Chudja, near Bunia, north eastern Congo. The conflict in Congo has often been linked to a struggle for control over its resources. Congo is rich in mineral resources such as gold, diamonds, tin, and cobalt. ©BELGA_AFP_L.Healing  

Military groups in conflict areas such as in the Democratic Republic of the Congo often use the sale of minerals found in their territory to fund their activities. A new EU proposal aims to put an end to this by setting up an EU system of self-certification to encourage importers, smelters and refiners to source their minerals responsibly. MEPs will debate the plans on Tuesday 19 May and vote on them the following day. Follow it live on our website. (Read more: Conflict minerals: preventing military groups from funding their activities )

 
Georgian president Giorgi Margvelashvili at the European Parliament ©CC/Facebook/Margvelashvili/LeliBlagonravova  

How should the EU interact with its neighbours to the east? Georgian president Giorgi Margvelashvili shared his views when he joined the foreign affairs committee on 11 May to discuss the Eastern Partnership ahead of the summit in Riga on 21-22 May. We spoke to him afterwards to ask how the partnership is working out for his country and how the EU should deal with Russia. (Read more: Georgian president: Russia better off solving problems by working with Europe )

 

EU needs to earmark money to withstand Russia, say Foreign Affairs MEPs

AFET External relations12-05-2015 - 11:45

As a return to "business as usual" with Russia is now out of the question, the EU should earmark specific funding to counter its propaganda and infiltration of EU politics and support independence movements there, say Foreign Affairs Committee MEPs in a resolution voted on Monday. EU countries should refrain from doing bilateral deals with Russia and step up their own collective efforts to withstand it, whilst retaining a return to cooperation with Russia as a long-term goal, they add. (Read more: EU needs to earmark money to withstand Russia, say Foreign Affairs MEPs )

 

Turkey must put democracy and fundamental rights first, foreign affairs MEPs say

AFET Enlargement / External relations11-05-2015 - 18:55
Assessing Turkey's 2014 reform progress  

Turkey must do more to fight corruption and enforce respect for media freedom, free expression and judicial independence, said Foreign Affairs Committee MEPs on Monday. In a resolution on the progress of reform in Turkey in 2014, MEPs also urge the EU to back Turkey’s efforts to build solid, democratic institutions and ensure respect for fundamental freedoms, human rights and the rule of law. Finally, it advocates stepping up EU/Turkey foreign policy cooperation. (Read more: Turkey must put democracy and fundamental rights first, foreign affairs MEPs say )

 

Empowering women in Africa: debate with Sakharov laureate Dr Denis Mukwege

DEVE Development and cooperation11-05-2015 - 11:01

Dr Denis Mukwege will join the Development Committee to debate how empowering women in Africa can foster the overall development of societies and why addressing health and human security is a prerequisite for progress in developing countries. Dr Mukwege was awarded the Sakharov Prize 2014 for his work for the victims of sexual violence in Eastern Congo's Kivu provinces. (Read more: Empowering women in Africa: debate with Sakharov laureate Dr Denis Mukwege )

 

Investor-state dispute settlement proposals debated with Commissioner Malmström

INTA External/international trade06-05-2015 - 19:10

A lively debate on the proposal for “reformed system” to resolve disputes between foreign investors and states in the Transatlantic Trade and investment partnership (TTIP) deal, currently being negotiated between the EU and the United states, took place between Trade Committee MEPs and EU Trade Commissioner Malmström on Wednesday afternoon. (Read more: Investor-state dispute settlement proposals debated with Commissioner Malmström )

 

April guest photographer contest topic: health

Others Development and cooperation06-05-2015 - 12:16
"The joy of health"  

Take part in our new guest photographer contest, inspired by 2015 being the European Year for Development. Every month until September we will be announcing a different topic linked to development. Send us your photo inspired by the theme of that month, along with the submission form and you could be invited to Strasbourg to make a photo reportage. (Read more: April guest photographer contest topic: health )

 

Russia has transformed Black Sea military landscape, say foreign affairs MEPs

Others Security and defence05-05-2015 - 14:38

If Russia does not apply the Minsk ceasefire deals in full and return Crimea to Ukraine, the EU should step up sanctions and consider the possibility of providing Ukraine with defensive arms, say Foreign Affairs Committee MEPs in a resolution voted on Monday. Returning Crimea is vital to the EU’s long-run cooperation with Russia and EU countries must also step up their own defence capabilities, says the text, which looks at Black Sea Basin military changes since Russia illegally annexed Crimea. (Read more: Russia has transformed Black Sea military landscape, say foreign affairs MEPs )