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EU must decide and deliver crisis aid faster, say foreign affairs MEPs

AFET External relations02-09-2014 - 16:51
Iraqi people take water from a humanitarian aid convoy in Amerli on September 1, 2014 ©BELGA_ AFP_ JM LOPEZ  

"We need to make our budgetary procedure simpler and faster: currently there is too much bureaucracy, and money given too late for humanitarian actions is wasted money", urged Foreign Affairs Committee chair Elmar Brok (EPP, DE) in Tuesday’s committee debate on international crises in the EU’s neighbourhood. The committee is to debate the crises in Iraq, Gaza, Syria, Libya and Ukraine in meetings this week. (Read more: EU must decide and deliver crisis aid faster, say foreign affairs MEPs )


Italian Presidency priorities discussed by EP committees


The priorities of the Italian Council Presidency are being outlined to the various parliamentary committees by Italian ministers on 2 and 3 September, following a first series of meetings held on 22 and 23 July. This text will be updated after each session. (Read more: Italian Presidency priorities discussed by EP committees )


Gender equality: Parliament organises workshop to improve strategy

Others Women's rights/Equal opportunities02-09-2014 - 15:04
Fifty percent concept of gender equal opportunities  

Even in 2014 gender equality still leaves a lot to be desired in Europe. On Wednesday 3 September the women's rights committee organises a workshop in Brussels to discuss a new strategy. During the workshop experts from several European countries will share their recommendations on how to improve the situation and achieve true gender equality. Follow it live on the Parliament website. (Read more: Gender equality: Parliament organises workshop to improve strategy )


Q&A: GMO cultivation in the EU

Others Agriculture / Environment / Food safety02-09-2014 - 12:19
Corn in a field. ©BELGA_ AFP_P.HUGUEN  

The EU has one of the toughest genetically modified food regulations in the world and the cultivation of GM crops is only allowed following a thorough risk assessment. Yet, as member states are calling for more possibilities to restrict GMO cultivation on their territories, the European Commission has proposed some amendments to the current EU rules. The Parliament and the Council are currently looking at these proposals. Read on to learn more. (Read more: Q&A: GMO cultivation in the EU )


Committee week: preparing the Parliament’s work

Others Institutions02-09-2014 - 11:32

With the summer recess over, parliamentary committees are meeting again this week. Which committee to join is one of the key decisions for new MEPs to take as it will determine in which field they will focus most of their efforts. Committees play a crucial role in policy-making, as they are responsible for drafting Parliament's positions on new legislative proposals. How do the committees operate? Read on and check out our infograghic to find out who the committee chairs are. (Read more: Committee week: preparing the Parliament’s work )


EP this week: foreign crises, economic concerns, EU budget

Others Institutions02-09-2014 - 10:19
EP building in Brussels  

MEPs resume business this week with most committees meeting for the first time after the summer break. Crises in the Middle East, Africa and Ukraine will feature prominently in discussions and Italian ministers will present the priorities of the new Council presidency. MEPs will review growth prospects with Eurogroup president Jeroen Dijsselbloem, while various committees will consider the EU's budget for next year. (Read more: EP this week: foreign crises, economic concerns, EU budget )

EP President Martin Schulz arrives at the European Council meeting of Saturday 30-08-2014 © The Council of the European Union  

“A direct military confrontation between Ukraine and Russia might well see the situation spiral completely out of control. The parties to the conflict and the international community must do everything in their power to prevent this from happening,” EP president Martin Schulz said, addressing heads of state and government at the start of a special meeting of the European Council on Saturday 30 August dedicated to appointing candidates for top EU jobs. (Read more: European Council summit: Schulz calls for political solution for Ukraine )

EP provides - illustration  

September is approaching and with it the start of parliamentary business. If you are running an online project, a web page or a blog and need factual information on the Parliament and the forthcoming commissioners hearings… We have the solution! The EP offers a wide range of infographics, videos, photos and interviews that you can use free of charge. Discover them with our online catalogue and use them for free for your products. Read on for more details. (Read more: Infographics, videos, slideshows... Discover our free-to-use editorial products )


Website maintenance Friday 29 August

Others Institutions28-08-2014 - 18:05
Website under maintenance, we will be back soon ©BELGA-V.Valka_Easyphotostock  

On Friday morning Parliament's website will undergo several updates (Read more: Website maintenance Friday 29 August )


Elmar Brok (EPP, DE), Chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee, called today for a strong EU foreign and security policy lead by a strong personality. “Bringing peace, stability and prosperity to the broader EU neighbourhood must be the first and utmost priority,” he said following a meeting of the Committee’s Enlarged Bureau with Commissioner Georgieva and the EEAS’s Executive Secretary General Pierre Vimont. (Read more: Elmar Brok: Strong EU foreign policy vital to end crises in the neighbourhood )