Wednesday

20th Jan 2021

News in Brief

  1. Brexit prompted finance exodus from UK to France
  2. Italian PM Conte wins confidence vote in Senate
  3. Borrell washes hands of EU's Venezuela policy
  4. Russia backs Greece in eastern Mediterranean dispute
  5. 'Ski-holiday' Switzerland reaches new infection high
  6. Germany extends lockdown, others expected to follow
  7. Barnier to be Brexit special adviser to von der Leyen
  8. EU commisioner to visit Bosnia's Lipa migrant camp

Opinion

The under-reported power struggle at the top of the OSCE

An internal power struggle has undermined the world's leading international security body since the summer. The OSCE is due to finally get new leaders in December but the unprecedented power vacuum has hit at a crunch time for hotspots worldwide.

Opinion

Time for EU to help free Saharawi people

Time the for EU to help free the Saharawi people after 45 years of Moroccan occupation in the scorching desert because Spain once swapped them for a school of fish.

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Opinion

Tackling frozen conflicts in the EU's own neighbourhood

Romania has drawn the signal that the time has come to resume the EU-level dialogue on protracted conflicts and their crippling effects on the region's security and development perspectives, writes the country's foreign minister, Bogdan Aurescu.

Opinion

EU name change masks new restrictions in development sector

This week the European Commission's Directorate for Cooperation and Development changes its name to the Directorate-General for International Partnerships - in a symbol of how early-industrialised countries seem to be losing influence to the benefit of some emerging countries.

EU condemns US execution of Lisa Montgomery

The US executed 52-year old Lisa Montgomery, a death row inmate, on Wednesday. Montgomery had committed a gruesome murder but she was also mentally ill. The EU is now demanding the US reverse all pending federal-level executions

Opinion

The EU's urgent imperative in the Sahel

It's alarming that the EU is moving towards making development assistance conditional on the cooperation of third countries with its own migration objectives. This risks skewing priorities and undermining progress.

New law gives Russian 'privileged status' in Moldova

Following a draft law approved by Moldovan parliament, the Russian language will now get a special status as the "language of interethnic communication", and becomes mandatory for all civil servants.

Opinion

India's human rights defenders deserve EU support

On Tuesday (12th January), the EU-India Human Rights dialogue will take place. Will EU leaders take a leap and stop keeping quiet about the deteriorating human rights situation in India?

Interview

Belarus threatens to kill two UK dissidents

British citizenship and international awards are not enough to make Belarusian dissident Natalia Kaliada feel safe after a high-profile death threat.

Italy's 2021 G20 presidency - a transatlantic reset?

The three pillars of Italy's G20 presidency - "people", "planet" and "prosperity" aimed at building a more sustainable future, as well as digital innovation - are shared by Joe Biden, which raises hopes of a positive EU-US dialogue.

Interview

Former US envoy to EU: 'Our democracy is fragile'

"I never dreamt I would see these things ... and chilling, chilling," Anthony Gardner, the former US ambassador to the EU, said of the pro-Trump mob which stormed the Capitol earlier this week.

EUobserved

European democrats, time to wake up

After the mob attack on Washington's Capitol Hill, we have to ask ourselves if it would be possible to see such a march on Brussels? The answer is: Yes. Europe is dealing with the same dark forces.

Vietnam jails journalist critical of EU trade deal

A journalist who had demanded the EU postpone its trade deal with Vietnam until human rights improved has been sentenced to 15 years in jail. The EU Commission says it first needs to conduct a detailed analysis before responding.

Opinion

What does Trump's 'coup' mean for Europe?

If Trump is still alive, healthy, free and tweeting politics by 2023, I think we all can officially start to worry. Not only for the American democracy, but for democracies in Europe and the rest of the world.

EU: Bosnia 'sacrificing' homeless migrants

The European Commission is providing an additional €3.5m of humanitarian aid to help migrants made homeless in Bosnia and Herzegovina due to political infighting.

Opinion

EU cannot ignore history in Balkans enlargement

It is high time Europe makes cultural and historical dialogue part of its enlargement process in the Balkans, following the debacle on Bulgaria and North Macedonia.