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Despite the EU’s 2006 Directive on equality between men and women in the labour market, differences in their pay persist and are even growing, say MEPs in a non-legislative resolution voted on Thursday. As member states did not take the opportunity to update their laws on equal opportunities and treatment, MEPs urge the EU Commission to table fresh legislation "providing for more effective means of supervising the implementation and enforcement in member states". (Read more: Pay gap between men and women: MEPs call for binding measures to close it )


MEPs passed four resolutions on Thursday: urging Saudi Arabia to halt the execution of Ali Mohammed al-Nimr and calling for a moratorium on the death penalty; demanding measures to starve Boko Haram in Nigeria of its sources of illegal income; expressing fears of civil war in Central African Republic; and deploring human rights abuses in Thailand following the coup of May 2014. (Read more: Human rights: Saudi Arabia, Nigeria, Central African Republic and Thailand )


Updating EU rules on payment services will cut the cost of paying bills, by enabling new market players to use mobile and online tools to make payments on a client’s behalf, said MEPs voting a law to this end on Thursday. These rules, informally agreed by MEPs and ministers last May, also aim to make online payments safer, by laying down data protection and liability rules for all online payment service providers. (Read more: Opening up the online payments market, so as to reduce fees and fraud risks )


The current situation in the European Union and challenges to be tackled together, and notably migration, were at the heart of Wednesday afternoon's debate between European Parliament political group leaders, President of the French Republic François Hollande and Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany Angela Merkel. (Read more: François Hollande and Angela Merkel face MEPs )

Press releases (second part)

Spanish King Felipe VI called on the EU to treat the current refugee crisis with "generosity, solidarity and responsibility" in an address to the plenary on Wednesday 7 October. The monarch stressed the suffering of those who come to Europe "fleeing violence and fanaticism". "[There are] hundreds of thousands of refugees who pursue a project of hope, and see the Union as a land area of peace, prosperity and justice," he said. "We cannot let them down." (Read more: King Felipe of Spain: Europe cannot let refugees down )


Proposed EU sulphur dioxide and nitrogen oxide emission limits for medium-sized combustion plants, such as electricity generators or heating systems for domestic, residential or industrial use, were backed by MEPs on Wednesday. They had already been informally agreed with EU ministers. In areas where these emissions breach EU air quality standards, EU countries would be required to assess whether to introduce stricter limits. (Read more: Capping emissions from medium-sized combustion plants )


More citizens and small firms will be able to use the simplified EU procedure to resolve low-value disputes across borders thanks to changes voted by Parliament on Wednesday. These changes, which still need to be formally approved by EU ministers, would raise the ceiling on debts recoverable using the procedure from €2,000 to €5,000. (Read more: MEPs approve measures to ease cross-border recovery of small debts )


The EU must do more to spur stability and security in Libya, MEPs said on Tuesday. On Wednesday, they demanded a full and independent investigation into the airstrikes against the hospital in Kunduz, called for more EU diplomatic efforts to end the Syrian conflict and warned against compromising human rights in cooperating with Turkey over the refugee crisis. (Read more: Syria, Turkey, Kunduz bombing and Libya: MEPs call for greater EU engagement )


French President François Hollande and German Chancellor Angela Merkel will make a historic joint appearance in the European Parliament in Strasbourg today. They will speak on topical European issues and debate with political group leaders. It is the first joint address of French and German leaders since November 1989, when President François Mitterrand and Chancellor Helmut Kohl debated the end of the Cold War with MEPs. Follow our coverage live from 15.00 CET. (Read more: Today in plenary: President Hollande and Chancellor Merkel to address MEPs )


MEPs debated the unfolding Volkswagen exhaust emissions scandal on Tuesday, on the basis of a parliamentary question. They asked Commissioner Elżbieta Bieńkowska to clarify whether emission test manipulation took place in Europe. Many speakers said the ongoing scandal endangers the credibility of the whole car sector, and called on the Commission to speed up the introduction of real drive emissions testing. (Read more: MEPs debated car emissions tests fraud with the Commission )

Weekly agenda
Schedule by day Friday 09 Oct 2015
Mission to the NATO Parliamentary Assembly 61st Annual Session - Delegations (09-10-2015):
The President's Agenda - The President's diary (09-10-2015):
Schedule by day Saturday 10 Oct 2015
Mission to the NATO Parliamentary Assembly 61st Annual Session - Delegations (10-10-2015):
The President's Agenda - The President's diary (10-10-2015):
Schedule by day Sunday 11 Oct 2015
Mission to the NATO Parliamentary Assembly 61st Annual Session - Delegations (11-10-2015):
The President's Agenda - The President's diary (11-10-2015):
Press release: #Paygap between men and #women: MEPs call for binding measures to close it: #EPlenary
Press release: #Humanrights: Saudi Arabia, Nigeria, Central African Republic and Thailand: #EPlenary
Press release: Opening up the #online #payments market, so as to reduce fees and fraud risks: #EPlenary
EP VP/ #Kosovo rapporteur @UlrikeLunacek shocked by tear gas attacks in Kosovo parliament: see statement:
Situation in #Turkey ahead of general election now discussed in #EPlenary with @nicolasschmit2 live:
Watch #EPlenary debating situation in #Syria with @nicolasschmit2 standing for @FedericaMog now:
#Deathpenalty resolution adopted in #EPlenary by 569 votes to 38 w/ 54 abs. Read more:
#EPlenary debates #deathpenalty after 19.00CET.More info Follow live
#HybridWarfare - is the EU ready? Watch @EP_Defence debates w/ @eu_eeas @NATO experts now:
Is the EU ready for #HybridWarfare? @EP_Defence debates w/ @eu_eeas @NATO experts on Thursday at 9.30:
.@EP_Defence w/ @eu_eeas DSG #Popowski debriefing 2-3 Sept informal meeting of EU defence ministers:
"The local dimension in the #post2015 #development agenda" voted today by #EPlenary Read more
#EPlenary debates local authorities in #developingcountries @THEOCHAROUSE Live after 18.30
#EPlenary to debate #Hacker team revelations: are EU firms selling spyware to dictatorships? @MarietjeSchaake
.@BerndLange on conclusion of #TPP: now is the time to move forward with TTIP
.@EP_trade delegation, led by @berndlange, during #WTO Public Forum in #Geneva with EU #WTO ambassador #Vanheukelen
RT @KGeorgievaEU: Speaking now in @EP_Budgets on proposal for increase of funding for refugee crisis. Need to move quickly.…
RT @KGeorgievaEU: Today's proposal part of package for 2015/16 worth €1.7 billion, brings total for 2 years to 9.2 billion already vs 4.5 o…
Changes to #EUbudget 2015 presented @EP_Budgets now by @KGeorgievaEU. Live
RT @euauditorseca: Annual #audit report (for 2014) for #EU exec. agency for #Innovation & Networks #INEA @inea_eu
RT @euauditorseca: Annual #audit report (2014 financ. year) for European #FisheriesControl Agency #EFCA @EFCA_EU
RT @euauditorseca: Annual #audit report (for 2014 financial year) for European #Banking Authority #EBA @EBA_News
MEPs debate w/ @jyrkikatainen on #CapitalmarketsUnion package #CMU @EP_Economics has just started follow live
.@EP_Economics Chair @gualtierieurope & #Balz on #CapitalMarketsUnion action plan CORRECT LINK
.@EPSocialAffairs Public hearing on re-shoring EU starts at 15:00 JAN 6Q2. Programme EPLive
.@EPSocialAffairs Public hearing on re-shoring EU Wed 15.00-17.30; JAN 6Q2. Programme EPLive
.@EPSocialAffairs next meeting on Wednesday, 23 September 9.00-12.30 &15.00-18.30 in JAN 6Q2. Follow EP Live
#airquality & medium combustion plants - #EPlenary adopts report by @GrzybAndrzej with 623 votes to 70 and 12 abstentions
#airquality - 12.30 #EPlenary vote on emission limits for medium combustion plants (report by @GrzybAndrzej) Webstr.
Missed today's #EPlenary debate on #Volkswagen emissions scandal? Catch up w/ our @Storify
#EPlenary recording of debate on North Stream pipeline&impact on #energyunion available here:
#EPlenary to discuss #Volkswagen emissions scandal from 15h w. @EBienkowskaEU. Follow our live tweeting from @EuroParlPress
RT @vickyford: US ambassador reassures @EP_SingleMarket MEPs They're working to find resolution on data issues for business ASAP http://t.c…
Why are consumers denied getting goods or digital content cross-border? #EPlenary debate today at ~10 am. Question
#EPlenary to discuss #Volkswagen emissions scandal from 15h w. @EBienkowskaEU. Follow our live tweeting from @EuroParlPress
Draft report on promotion of tourism in Europe adopted in TRAN committee: 42 in favour, 4 against, 1 abstention
Draft report on safe use of drones in civil aviation adopted in TRAN committee this morning: 45 in favour, 1 against, 0 abstentions
European Parliament backs urgent frontloading of €35 billion in EU funding for #Greece with 586 +, 87 -(21 abstentions) #cohesion
Visita delegazione PE in #Sicilia per valutare utilizzo #FondiStrutturali:
RT @CorinaCretuEU: At the conference #EUbudget4Results. Reformed for 2014-20, #CohesionPolicy is now clearly performance-oriented. http://t…
.@EP_Agriculture debate w/ @PhilHoganEU on Implementation plan for #EUForestStrategy starts in 5m. Follow it live:
#Agriculture #milk & #meat #crisis: MEPs welcome €500m #farmer aid package but want more action. More in PR:
#EPlenary debate on #crisis on #agriculture #milk & #meat markets starts now. Live: &
#Fisheries committee webstream for this afternoon's session:
Missed Tuesday's hearing on #Fisheries plans? VOD here: Presentations soon available here:
New study/nouvelle analyse (in French) "Le contrôle de la #pêche européenne: Une vue d'ensemble" #Fisheries
RT @sportintergroup: This 29th of september Conférence about 'ethics, gouvernance & sport' with #uefa #fifa #cio #fidh #csi #FA @Europarl_E…
RT @sportintergroup: Ethics, governance & sport: criteria for the allocation of international sporting évents. Conférence at the EP soon ht…
Online activities of public service media @EuAvObservator, #Interculturaldialogue, #Erasmus+: @EPCulture meeting now
Today at 9h @EP_Legal meeting: number of judges at the #GeneralCourt of #CJEU. Agenda: Live
Updating #SmallClaims procedure: MEPs approve measures to ease cross-border recovery of small debts. Read more:
RT @EP_ThinkTank: Eastern Mediterranean-Western Balkans Route #migrants to get fast track #asylum if from 'safe' country of origin http://t…
RT @EUCouncilPress: Council conclusions on strengthening use of means of fighting trafficking of firearms: #counter…
RT @EUCouncilPress: Council conclusions on the future of the return policy: #migrationEU #EU2015LU #JHA…
All EU citizens living abroad should vote in EU elections says AFCO @danutahuebner @jo_leinen
RT @jo_leinen: #European Elections 2019:EP Committee AFCO votes in favour of zip lists and equality of men and women in the next Parliament
next AFCO meeting 22/10
Press release: MEPs call for binding measures to close #Paygap between men & women:
Resolution on #paygap #EPlenary adopted with 344 vote in favour and 156 against. Press release to follow soon...
Now vote in #EPlenary on mortgage legislation in Spain: Live:
Today after 18h follow discussion in #EPlenary on mortgage legislation in Spain. Live: @EP_Petitions
Missed @EP_Petitions meeting last week? Video recording available here:
The Parliament is on...