Monday

23rd Oct 2017

Italian government sticks with Buttiglione

  • All eyes on Rome (Photo: EUobserver)

The crisis over the nomination of a new EU Commission is deepening as the Italian government has signalled an unwillingness to change its candidate Rocco Buttiglione, making an easy solution to the current situation unlikely.

"Italy is maintaining Rocco Buttiglione", Italian foreign minister Franco Frattini was quoted as saying by ANSA news agency.

Thank you for reading EUobserver!

Subscribe now for a 30 day free trial.

  1. €150 per year
  2. or €15 per month
  3. Cancel anytime

EUobserver is an independent, not-for-profit news organization that publishes daily news reports, analysis, and investigations from Brussels and the EU member states. We are an indispensable news source for anyone who wants to know what is going on in the EU.

We are mainly funded by advertising and subscription revenues. As advertising revenues are falling fast, we depend on subscription revenues to support our journalism.

For group, corporate or student subscriptions, please contact us. See also our full Terms of Use.

If you already have an account click here to login.

On Wednesday (28 October) the incoming head of the European Commission, José Manuel Durao Barroso, was forced to postpone a vote of approval in the European Parliament on his first line-up of new Commissioners.

This has not happened before in the history of the EU and a solution to the crisis is not foreseen in the EU treaties.

All eyes now shift to Rome, where EU heads of state and government are gathering on Friday (29 October) to sign the European Constitution, where the ceremonial impact of the event risks being lost in the political wheeler-dealing.

Decisions are expected at a summit next week in Brussels (5 November).

Sweeping changes

Mr Barroso is under pressure to make more sweeping changes to get his team approved.

"Obviously it [the Commission] will have some changes, there will be alterations which are necessary and sufficient, not more not less", the EU’s incoming president Mr Barroso diplomatically told Portuguese journalists last night.

"There are three or four commissioners who did not have the support of the parliament. We need a somewhat broader change", Luxembourg Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker said without giving names, according to Reuters.

"The position of my group was to vote against Mr Buttiglione as justice and home affairs commissioner, but in favour of Mr Buttiglione as commissioner", the leader of the Liberal group in the European Parliament Graham Watson told reporters.

"However, to be honest, I think it would be at least politically unwise for Mr Barroso to come back with a commission with Mr Buttiglione in it", he added, according to Deutsche Welle.

Investigation

The mysterious German behind Orban's Russian deals

Klaus Mangold, a German businessman with good connections in Russia, and who provided a jet for Commission vice-president Guenther Oettinger, played a crucial role in Hungary's controversial Paks nuclear deal with Russia, Direkt36's investigation has found.

Tusk summits to create new-model EU

Tusk has proposed a series of 13 top-level talks to take forward European reform, but his backing for a multi-speed Europe risks deepening divide.

Catalonia to declare independence in a few days

Spain's king, Felipe VI, said Catalonia's leaders were breaking up the country's unity as hundreds of thousands of Catalans rallied against police violence at Sunday's referendum.

Catalan MPs weigh independence declaration

A crucial week is ahead in Catalonia as its leaders decide whether to declare independence - an illegal move according to the Spanish government – or yield to pressure from Madrid.

Italian regions demand autonomy from Rome

The Lombardy and Veneto regions in northern Italy are seeking greater self-determination from the central government following referendum results on Sunday.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Martens CentreI Say Europe, You Say...? Interview With Commission VP Jyrki Katainen
  2. Mission of China to the EUPresident Xi Jinping Proposes Stronger Global Security Governance at Interpol Assembly
  3. European Friends of ArmeniaEU Engagement Could Contribute to Lasting Peace in Nagorno-Karabakh
  4. UNICEFViolence in Myanmar Driving 12,000 Rohingya Refugee Children Into Bangladesh Every Week
  5. European Jewish CongressBulgaria Applauded for Adopting the Working Definition of Antisemitism
  6. EU2017EENorth Korea Leaves Europe No Choice, Says Estonian Foreign Minister Sven Mikser
  7. Mission of China to the EUZhang Ming Appointed New Ambassador of the Mission of China to the EU
  8. International Partnership for Human RightsEU Should Seek Concrete Commitments From Azerbaijan at Human Rights Dialogue
  9. European Jewish CongressEJC Calls for New Austrian Government to Exclude Extremist Freedom Party
  10. CES - Silicones EuropeIn Healthcare, Silicones Are the Frontrunner. And That's a Good Thing!
  11. EU2017EEEuropean Space Week 2017 in Tallinn from November 3-9. Register Now!
  12. European Entrepreneurs CEA-PMEMobiliseSME Exchange Programme Open Doors for 400 Companies Across Europe