Welcome to the European Parliament Office in Washington DC
This is the website of the European Parliament's Liaison Office with the U.S. Congress. Our presence here is intended to strengthen cooperation between legislators in the U.S. and the European Union and to provide information to the public in the United States. Americans and Europeans together constitute the leading force in the world economy and, over the last 60 years, we have cooperated closely to enhance the cause of peace, freedom and human rights. Together we also face contemporary challenges most notably the threat of terrorism and the need to increase economic growth while protecting our environment. This website is intended as a window on the European Parliament to all those in the United States who are concerned with developments as legislators, officials, civil society, business, trade unions, reporters and all those studying the history and institutions of the European Union at school.
Back to back: Parliament in Strasbourg, Congress in Washington
How do their roles and powers compare? EuroparlTV followed representatives from each side of the pond.
A proposal to extend the geographical indication protection to non-food products will be debated in plenary today and voted on tomorrow. The report, adopted by the legal affairs committee on 15 September, says providing this protection to non-food products could help inform consumers, preserve regions' cultural heritage and boost local economies. Watch the debate live on our website.
Germany celebrates on 3 October 25 years of reunification. After the Berlin wall fell in 1989, East and West Germany reuniting became an obvious next step. Parliament set up a special committee to look at the possible impact of this. "German reunification was, in a way, an informal form of enlargement of the European Union," said Elmar Brok, who was a committee member and is still an MEP today. He and other MEPs share with us their memories of this period.
French President François Hollande and German Chancellor Angela Merkel will make a historic joint appearance in the European Parliament in Strasbourg on 7 October. They will speak on topical European issues and will have a debate with political group leaders. It is the first joint address of French and German leaders since November 1989, when President François Mitrterand and Chancellor Helmut Kohl debated the end of the Cold War with MEPs. Follow our coverage live on Wednesday from 15.00 CET.
The sky and stars have always fascinated us and life outside our planet remains one of the great mysteries facing mankind. Monday, NASA announced that it has serious evidence of water on the surface of Mars. We asked MEP and astrophysicist Giorgos Grammatikakis (S&D, Greece), to talk to us about Mars and what this discovery means.
The civil liberties committee will debate the current situation at the borders inside the Schengen area in the wake of the temporary reimposition of border controls by some member states with Commission representatives on Thursday morning. The Commission is required to monitor the situation closely and keep Parliament and the Council fully informed under the Schengen Borders Code.