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On 25 November 2021, the European Commission put forward a proposal to modify Council Directive 94/80/EC on the right of mobile EU citizens to vote and stand as candidates in municipal elections. The proposal tied in with the Commission President's priority for a new push for European democracy. The proposal was presented together with three others: a proposal to modify Directive 93/109/EC on EU citizens' right to vote and stand as candidates in elections to the European Parliament; a proposal on ...

The European Union (EU) has a strong leadership role, globally and regionally, in implementing the Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development but as a matter of urgency its ambitions now need to be translated into strategies and actions. Major global crises, such as the COVID-19 pandemic, the war in Ukraine and climate change, have all effectively reversed progress in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and further exacerbated interrelated challenges relating to poverty, inequality, carbon ...

'This is Europe' – an initiative proposed by the President of the European Parliament, Roberta Metsola – consists of a series of debates with EU leaders to discuss their visions for the future of the European Union. On 13 December, the Prime Minister of Slovenia, Robert Golob, envisaged a European Union that believes in the power of integration, the power of cooperation and the power of unity. His main message was the importance of the energy transition. In the context of current high energy prices ...

The role of the European Council is to 'provide the Union with the necessary impetus for its development' and to define its 'general political directions and priorities'. Since its creation in 1975, the European Council has exercised considerable influence over the development of the European Union, a process enhanced by its designation as a formal institution of the Union under the Lisbon Treaty in 2009. The European Council Oversight Unit within the European Parliamentary Research Service (EPRS ...

After examining the innovative character of the proposed tribunal, the paper analyses three main interconnected elements linked to the establishment and functioning of the tribunal: the legal basis for its creation; problems of immunity; and questions of enforcement and implementation of its decisions. In the end, taking into account legitimacy considerations which are of crucial importance in this case, the authors evoke two possibilities. A first option would be to ground the tribunal’s creation ...

The European Council consists of the 27 Heads of State or Government of the EU Member States, who are voting members, together with the President of the European Council and the President of the European Commission, who have no vote (Article 15(2) Treaty on European Union). The chart shows the current members, the national office they hold, their most recent European political affiliation, and the year their membership began.

The last regular European Council meeting of 2022 is scheduled to take place on 15 December, and to deal with the main topics of this year: Russia's war of aggression against Ukraine, security and defence, energy and the economy. On Russia's war on Ukraine, EU leaders are likely to reiterate their commitment to political and military support to Ukraine. Energy and the economy are purposely due to be dealt with together, to contain the discussion and to avoid a debate on setting up additional EU funding ...

This research study examines the impact of COVID-19 measures on democracy and fundamental rights in the EU. It considers what best practices have been evidenced, and the lessons that can be learned from comparative experience within EU Member States as well as relevant third countries. It examines pandemic governance in the EU and its Member States during the COVID-19 pandemic between 2020 and 2022. It describes how the COVID-19 pandemic was addressed by EU Member States, either in terms of declaring ...

European media freedom act

Briefing 21-11-2022

An independent media is a pillar of democracy and an important part of the economy, helping to shape public opinion and hold those in power to account. In recent years, however, there have been increasingly worrying trends across the European Union (EU), as documented in the annual rule of law reports by the European Commission and other tools such as the Media Pluralism Monitor. Published on 16 September 2022, the European media freedom act (EMFA) proposes a new set of rules and mechanisms to promote ...

This briefing is intended as a background overview for parliamentary committees (and their secretariats) planning their activities in relation to the European Commission's 2023 work programme (CWP 2023), adopted on 18 October 2022. The CWP 2023 is shaped by the exceptional circumstances linked to Russia's invasion of Ukraine, which triggered a vast humanitarian, human rights, displacement, food and energy crisis. As of 7 October 2022, the UN Refugee Agency reports that nearly a third of Ukrainians ...