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European Union, The (EU)

Self Description

July 2002: "The European Union (EU) was set up after the 2nd World War. The process of European integration was launched on 9 May 1950 when France officially proposed to create 'the first concrete foundation of a European federation'. Six countries (Belgium, Germany, France, Italy, Luxembourg and the Netherlands) joined from the very beginning. Today, after four waves of accessions (1973: Denmark, Ireland and the United Kingdom; 1981: Greece; 1986: Spain and Portugal; 1995: Austria, Finland and Sweden) the EU has 15 Member States and is preparing for the accession of 13 eastern and southern European countries."

Third-Party Descriptions

July 2016: "As the vote approached, pro-Brexit newspapers — including The Sun, The Daily Mail, The Express and The Telegraph — wrote stories that exaggerated how many immigrants were coming to Britain because of its E.U. membership and their effects on social services, reported that Queen Elizabeth II was secretly pro-Brexit, and quoted claims from pro-Leave politicians that Britain was sending 350 million pounds ($464 million) a week to the European Union that could be used instead to shore up the National Health Service."

May 2014: 'What is clear is that with his re-election, Orbán has consolidated a well-orchestrated constitutional coup that has rattled the European Union’s complacency about being a club of well-behaved democracies. Since 2010, Fidesz has rewritten the Constitution without engaging any opposition parties and has granted overwhelming and unchecked power to its party leader, who in turn wasted little time in wresting control of every state institution from opposition hands, entrenching his political allies everywhere, bringing the judiciary to heel and radically centralizing political authority. The Fidesz constitutional “reform” has spawned a Frankenstate, a form of government created by stitching together perfectly normal rules from the laws of various EU members into a monstrous new whole. The component pieces of the Hungarian Frankenstate might have operated perfectly well in their original contexts, but combined in a new constitutional system, these once-normal rules produce abnormal results. As government spokespeople have said every time there is criticism of a particular aspect of the new constitutional order: that rule exists in Greece. Or Germany. Or the United Kingdom. It’s normal. End of story. But nowhere do all those rules exist together, except in the Hungarian Frankenstate.'

February 2013: "Mr. Yaacoub’s testimony offered unaccustomed insights from an active Hezbollah member into the militant group’s secret operations. But it carried potentially greater significance for the European Union, which has thus far resisted following Washington’s lead in declaring the group a terrorist organization. Experts say that a conviction here would substantially raise the pressure on the bloc for such a designation."

November 2011: "On the surface, Greece and Italy seem remarkably alike. Both countries have entrenched patronage networks that predate the European Union by centuries and suffocating regulations and work rules. And both Mr. Papademos, 64, and Mr. Monti, 68, the president of Bocconi University in Milan, have close ties to European Union officials, who are taking a strong hand in managing the affairs of both countries because the fate of the euro hangs in the balance."

June 2011: 'The European Union, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund, known as the “troika,” say that is the only way out for a heavily indebted Greece, while some economists say the program resembles medieval bloodletting — a dose of pain highly unlikely to revive the patient.'

February 2011: "A French company, 1plusV, which owns, one of three European companies that have already filed charges against Google, said it sent a supplementary complaint to the European Commission, the executive arm of the European Union."

May 2010: "BRUSSELS — The European Union fined a group of computer chip makers 331.3 million euros ($409 million) on Wednesday for price fixing in the first use of a new procedure that allows settlement of cartel cases in Europe."

May 2010: 'Lebanon has been seeking approval from the European Union to register hummus as a national dish. "What we have been trying to do is just what the Greeks have done with feta cheese," said Fadi Abboud, president of The Association of Lebanese Industrialists, in January.'

April 2010: "The details of the plan have been settled in negotiations here with officials of the European Union, the I.M.F. and the European Central Bank. Greek officials close to the discussions said the deal would include as much as 130 billion euros in aid over the next three years at reasonable interest rates. In return, the I.M.F. asked Greece to cut public sector spending by 8 billion euros in the 14 months after the plan was adopted. Economists called that provision crucial because past reform programs by the government have relied too much on overly optimistic assumptions about the collection of unpaid taxes."

April 2010: 'The reactions to the resolution, however, have been shockingly churlish and cynical. Some, especially but not only Bosnian Muslims, have complained that the resolution was worthless because it talks only of a “crime” and a “tragedy,” not a “genocide.” Others say Serbia’s government pushed this resolution through merely to curry favor with the European Union, which it desperately wants to join.'

July 2009: "It is also a beneficiary of €1.59 million in farm subsidies from the European Union, which last year doled out more than €50 billion, $71 billion, from the largest agricultural aid program in the world, one that provides financing to a wide variety of recipients beyond the farmers who plow the soil — German gummy bear manufacturers, luxury cruise ship caterers and wealthy landowners ranging from Queen Elizabeth II of England to Prince Albert II of Monaco."

June 3009: 'The EU filed a similar complaint the same day. In a statement, EU Trade Commissioner Catherine Ashton said, "The Chinese restrictions on raw materials distort competition and increase global prices, making things even more difficult for our companies in this economic downturn."'

June 2009: 'This August, U.S. airlines face their first big deadline to meet European Union rules on emissions linked to global warming. That's when carriers landing in Europe will have to submit proposals to the EU on how they plan to track such emissions. This is a first step toward tough European "cap-and-trade" laws requiring airlines to either slash greenhouse gases or pay for permits to emit, starting in 2012. U.S. airlines are watching these developments anxiously, in part because they are already struggling with weak travel demand and yo-yo'ing fuel prices.'

November 2008: "That would seem to argue for swift action to stop the pirates, and Germany did indeed draw international attention earlier this week when it announced that up to 1,400 military personnel members might take part in the mission to combat piracy. But the figure significantly overstated the likely deployment as part of a European Union mission in the region, and Parliament has yet to approve it. It also remains to be seen whether the rules of engagement give German sailors a free enough hand to fight the pirates."

August 2008: "NATO Secretary-General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer said Tuesday that Russian forces were still inside Georgia, despite a European Union-brokered cease-fire agreement to withdraw -- and despite Moscow's saying it had begun pulling out Monday."

July 2008: "EU home affairs ministers are gathering in Brussels to discuss a number of proposals on immigration, attempting to set a common approach across member states."

June 2008: "The new laws in the European Union require companies to demonstrate that a chemical is safe before it enters commerce -- the opposite of policies in the United States, where regulators must prove that a chemical is harmful before it can be restricted or removed from the market. Manufacturers say that complying with the European laws will add billions to their costs, possibly driving up prices of some products."

June 2008: 'A statement from the United States and the 27-nation European Union said Iran must undertake a "full and verifiable" suspension of its uranium enrichment program and disclose any prior weapons-related work to the International Atomic Energy Agency. Although it is suspected that Iran halted work on nuclear weapons several years ago, the inability of the IAEA to inspect its operations has left doubts about Tehran's intentions as it continues to expand and improve its uranium enrichment. Enriched uranium can be used for both nuclear energy and weapons.'

January 2008: "European Union officials insist that their bloc, which has negotiated fishing deals with Africa since 1979, is a scapegoat for Africa’s management failures and the misdeeds of other foreign fleets. They argue that African officials oversell fishing rights, inflate potential catches and allow pirate vessels and local boats free rein in breeding grounds."

November 2007: "The European Union, China’s biggest trading partner, accuses Beijing of holding the yuan at an artificially low level to assist Chinese exporters, contributing to the trade imbalance. China’s surplus is forecast to widen 30 percent this year, to 170 billion euros, ($252 billion)."

November 2007: "European Union environmental officials have determined that two kinds of genetically modified corn could harm butterflies, affect food chains and disturb life in rivers and streams, and they have proposed a ban on the sale of the seeds, which are made by DuPont Pioneer, Dow Agrosciences and Syngenta."

November 2007: In the report, which is expected to be read closely by European Union officials who are assessing Serbia’s readiness to join the 27-member bloc, researchers concluded that “filthy conditions, contagious diseases, lack of medical care and rehabilitation and a failure to provide oversight renders placement in a Serbian institution life-threatening.” European Union officials said that such reports would be a basis for their assessments of a country’s record in upholding human rights, and of its readiness to enter the union.

October 2007: Across Switzerland, anti-foreigner and anti-Islamic attitudes have become so pervasive on the streets, in politics and within governmental institutions that the United Nations, European Union, Amnesty International and Switzerland's own Federal Commission Against Racism have expressed alarm in recent months.

August 2007: Greece has one of the worst records in the European Union on environmental issues, and on forest protection in particular. Environmental groups say recycling is in its infancy, development is largely unregulated, and protected areas neglected.

April 2007: The European Union’s election observer mission said it had serious concerns about the state elections, urging that in some states election officials should “undertake a comprehensive investigation and give serious consideration to re-running the process.” A coalition of Nigerian community organizations said that in 10 states the results were so flawed that they “cannot be said to have reflected the will of the people,” Reuters reported.

January 2007: With a newly empowered Germany at the helm, the European Union is making surprising strides toward expanding legal immigration into the bloc as a whole for the first time.

October 2006: The United States and the European Union failed to meet a Saturday deadline to conclude a permanent new agreement on the sharing of airline passenger data, an issue that has raised serious privacy concerns in Europe. But both sides said talks will continue and flights will not be affected.

March 2006: As the hoped-for entry draws near, Romania's experience illustrates how expansion of the European Union is changing not just the union but the states that join. Like eight other East European nations that entered in 2004, Romania is busy erasing the legacy of half a century of communism and trying to build institutions that bear the stamp of approval of E.U. headquarters in Brussels.

February 2006: The argument was outlined in a document Microsoft delivered confidentially to European Union antitrust authorities Feb. 15. The company made its response public Thursday amid its intensifying antitrust problems in Europe. E.U. antitrust authorities have 'moved the goal posts on us but have deliberately refused to articulate' what will satisfy them, said Horacio Gutierrez, Microsoft's general counsel for Europe.

July 2005: Since then, the court's decision has been awaited as an important test not just of the European warrant but of the larger principle that once the European Union has enacted a law and a member has ratified it, the European law takes priority over national laws, whether in the realm of criminal procedure or agricultural subsidies.

October 2004: NKARA, Turkey, Oct. 2 - Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who has staked his political reputation on leading Turkey into the European Union, said Saturday that Turkey would not accept any affiliation with the union that falls short of full membership.


RoleNameTypeLast Updated
Owner of (partial or full, past or present) ANEC Organization Apr 29, 2010
Owner of (partial or full, past or present) European Commission Organization Oct 14, 2007
Owner of (partial or full, past or present) European Court of Justice (CURIA) Organization Oct 1, 2006
Owner of (partial or full, past or present) European Parliament Organization Oct 19, 2006
Owner of (partial or full, past or present) Europol Organization Feb 4, 2013
Financial Supporter of (past or present) Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) Organization May 17, 2010
Organization Executive (past or present) Jacques Barrot Person Jun 21, 2008
Cooperation (past or present) Prime Minister David Cameron Person Jul 4, 2016
Opponent (past or present) Nigel Farage Person Jul 4, 2016
Opponent (past or present) Mayor Boris Johnson Person Jul 4, 2016
Organization Executive (past or present) Christine Lagarde Esq. Person Jun 1, 2014
Organization Head/Leader (past or present) Per Stig Moller Person
Advised by (past or present) Dr. John Edwin Mroz Ph.D. Person Feb 7, 2012
Organization Head/Leader (past or present) Herman Van Rompuy Person Oct 27, 2011
Organization Head/Leader (past or present) Jose Socrates Person Nov 21, 2007
Organization Executive (past or present) Javier Solana Person Sep 24, 2005

Articles and Resources

155 Articles and Resources. Go to:  [Beginning] [Previous 20] [Next 20]   [End]

Date Resource Read it at:
Jul 24, 2008 Italy to Jail Illegal Migrants: A new law makes undocumented migration a crime, punishable by up to four years in jail

QUOTE: According to media reports, the legislation will introduce a new criminal offence—"illegal immigration"—punishable by six to four years in prison. The law also states that property rented to an undocumented immigrant can be confiscated.The maximum period an immigrant can be kept in detention after illegally setting foot on Italian territory will be extended to 18 months—which is in line with EU-wide rules on returning non-EU nationals who do not or no longer fulfill the conditions for entry, stay or residence in a member state.

Jul 08, 2008 Europe Debates Perfection It Demands of Its Produce

QUOTE: Had enough? So has the European Commission's agriculture commissioner, Mariann Fischer Boel of Denmark. She proposes scrapping all but 10 of the regulations, arguing that they are needlessly cumbersome and bureaucratic, and that they lead to people throwing away perfectly edible fruits and vegetables for cosmetic reasons at a time when the world is suffering food shortages and rapid price increases. She hopes representatives from the 27-nation bloc will vote to streamline the regulations at a meeting this month.

Washington Post
Jul 01, 2008 African Union Calls for Settlement in Zimbabwe

QUOTE: The union, a 53-nation body that is Africa’s most authoritative group, made the call after a two-day gathering of African leaders marked by divisions over the handling of the crisis in Zimbabwe. While President Omar Bongo of Gabon endorsed Mr. Mugabe’s presidency, Botswana urged the suspension of Zimbabwe from African forums because its participation would “give unqualified legitimacy to a process which cannot be considered legitimate.”

New York Times
Jun 30, 2008 Hoarding Nations Drive Food Costs Ever Higher (The Food Chain)

QUOTE: When it comes to rice, India, Vietnam, China and 11 other countries have limited or banned exports. Fifteen countries, including Pakistan and Bolivia, have capped or halted wheat exports. More than a dozen have limited corn exports. Kazakhstan has restricted exports of sunflower seeds. The restrictions are making it harder for impoverished importing countries to afford the food they need. The export limits are forcing some of the most vulnerable people, those who rely on relief agencies, to go hungry.

New York Times
Jun 27, 2008 Take Out the Trash Precisely, Now. It’s the Law. (Whitehaven Journal)

QUOTE: “I consider the fine against Mr. Corkhill to be a matter of injustice, really, and as a Christian minister I’m required to speak out against injustice,” declared the Rev. John Bannister, the rector of Whitehaven, a seaside town in Cumbria, in the far northwest. Referring to the garbage cans residents here use, he said, “To be given a criminal record for leaving your wheelie bin open by three inches has, I think, really gone beyond the bounds of responsible behavior.”

New York Times
Jun 26, 2008 Computer Files Hold Key in CIA Case: Officer Had Maps, Photos Involving Abducted Cleric, Court Told

QUOTE: Angelo Foglieri, an Italian anti-terrorism investigator, said Wednesday during trial proceedings in Milan that police found street maps on the CIA officer's computer that had been downloaded from an Internet travel service, The maps, he said, showed the quickest routes from the cleric's mosque and home in Milan to Aviano Air Base, a joint U.S.-Italian military installation a few hours' drive away.

Washington Post
Jun 12, 2008 Chemical Law Has Global Impact: E.U.'s New Rules Forcing Changes By U.S. Firms

QUOTE: Europe this month rolled out new restrictions on makers of chemicals linked to cancer and other health problems, changes that are forcing U.S. industries to find new ways to produce a wide range of everyday products.

Washington Post
Jun 11, 2008 Harsh Words for Microsoft Technology

QUOTE: Ms. Kroes has fought bitterly with Microsoft over the last four years, accusing the company of defying her orders and fining it nearly 1.7 billion euros, or $2.7 billion, on the grounds of violating European competition rules. But her comments were the strongest recommendation yet by Ms. Kroes to jettison Microsoft products, which are based on proprietary standards, and to use rival operating systems to run computers.

New York Times
Jun 10, 2008 Bush, E.U. Threaten Iran With Sanctions

QUOTE: Following a two-hour meeting that touched on Iran and a host of issues including climate change and trade, Bush and his European counterparts indicated they were prepared to go beyond current United Nations sanctions to try to ensure Iran does not develop a nuclear weapon.

Washington Post
Jun 06, 2008 Turkey’s High Court Overturns Headscarf Rule

QUOTE: Turkey’s highest court dealt a stinging slap to the governing party of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Thursday, ruling that a legal change allowing women attending universities to wear head scarves was unconstitutional. The Constitutional Court said in a brief statement that the change, proposed by Mr. Erdogan’s party and passed by Parliament in February, violated principles of secularism set in Turkey’s Constitution.

New York Times
Jun 03, 2008 Same-Sex Marriages Performed in Greece

QUOTE: Defying governmental wrath, the mayor of a remote Greek island performed the country’s first same-sex marriages on Tuesday, wedding two men and two women.

New York Times
May 28, 2008 Human Rights Report Assails U.S.

QUOTE: “World leaders are in a state of denial but their failure to act has a high cost,” Irene Khan, the secretary general of Amnesty International, said in a statement accompanying the report. “As Iraq and Afghanistan show, human rights problems are not isolated tragedies, but are like viruses than can infect and spread rapidly, endangering all of us.”

New York Times
May 28, 2008 Traffic Stops Over Gas Prices: As Fuel Costs Soar in Europe, Angry Truckers, Fishermen Set Up Blockades

QUOTE: Hundreds of truckers shut down a central London highway Tuesday, French fishermen blockaded ports and French President Nicolas Sarkozy proposed cutting European fuel taxes as already high gasoline prices soared even higher.

Washington Post
May 26, 2008 Atomic Monitor Signals Concern Over Iran’s Work

QUOTE: The nine-page report accused the Iranians of a willful lack of cooperation, particularly in answering allegations that its nuclear program may be intended more for military use than for energy generation.

New York Times
Jan 14, 2008 Europe Takes Africa’s Fish, and Migrants Follow

QUOTE: A vast flotilla of industrial trawlers from the European Union, China, Russia and elsewhere, together with an abundance of local boats, have so thoroughly scoured northwest Africa’s ocean floor that major fish populations are collapsing. That has crippled coastal economies and added to the surge of illegal migrants who brave the high seas in wooden pirogues hoping to reach Europe.

New York Times
Nov 28, 2007 China Rejects Europe’s Call for Currency to Rise Faster

QUOTE: The European Union, China’s biggest trading partner, accuses Beijing of holding the yuan at an artificially low level to assist Chinese exporters, contributing to the trade imbalance. China’s surplus is forecast to widen 30 percent this year, to 170 billion euros, ($252 billion).

New York Times
Nov 23, 2007 Proposed Ban on Genetically Modified Corn in Europe

QUOTE: In the decisions, the environment commissioner, Stavros Dimas, contends that the genetically modified corn, or maize could affect certain butterfly species, specifically the monarch, and other beneficial insects. For instance, research this year indicates that larvae of the monarch butterfly exposed to the genetically modified corn “behave differently than other larvae.”

New York Times
Nov 14, 2007 Mentally Ill in Serbia Are Abused, Report Says

QUOTE: In the report, which is expected to be read closely by European Union officials who are assessing Serbia’s readiness to join the 27-member bloc, researchers concluded that “filthy conditions, contagious diseases, lack of medical care and rehabilitation and a failure to provide oversight renders placement in a Serbian institution life-threatening.”

New York Times
Oct 09, 2007 Swiss Fury at Foreigners Boiling Over: Grisly Attack on African Underscores Race Issue In a Harsh Campaign

QUOTE: Across Switzerland, anti-foreigner and anti-Islamic attitudes have become so pervasive on the streets, in politics and within governmental institutions that the United Nations, European Union, Amnesty International and Switzerland's own Federal Commission Against Racism have expressed alarm in recent months.

Washington Post
Oct 05, 2007 Will Costa Rica join Latin America's leftward tide? Costa Ricans vote Sunday whether to approve a free-trade pact with the US.

QUOTE: Supporters, including Costa Rican President Oscar Arias, say that the agreement is essential for jobs and investment and that it will keep the technology sector booming. Opponents say the deal will flood the market with cheap imports, will be a boost to multinationals at the expense of small-business owners, and threaten national sovereignty.

Christian Science Monitor

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