Wednesday

21st Feb 2024

Opinion

2024 will be a momentous year for election observers

Our role is not to 'judge' the elections, but observation does provide an additional level of transparency, scrutiny and public accountability, writes Matteo Mecacci, director of the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR).

Poland awaits EU-funds approval as Reynders visits Warsaw

Restoring the rule of law in Poland to unlock EU funds after the Law and Justice era marks a major challenge for Donald Tusk's new government, as EU justice commissioner Didier Reynders will see during a Warsaw visit on Friday

Latest News

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  5. EU-Israel trade agreement must be on table to stop Rafah attack
  6. 'Nightmare' 2024 sees Orbán struggle ahead of EU elections
  7. 'Crying wolf' win for chemicals lobby at Antwerp EU meeting
  8. Hungary blocks EU appeal for Israel not to strike Rafah

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EU approves new anti-money laundering deal

The EU reached a provisional agreement that will give the bloc more powers to combat money laundering and terrorist financing through high-value assets and crypto.

Analysis

Why concessions to Orbán will come back to bite EU

As the EU hopes to agree on further financial aid for Ukraine, fears are emerging over offering concessions to Hungary, which risk setting a dangerous precedent and the threats of legal challenges.

Countering the far-right before EU elections - too little, too late?

The threat of increasing far-right influence in the upcoming European Parliament has led progressive parties to call for a cordon sanitaire, but political scientists warn there are no easy solutions. "It's a bit of a chicken-egg situation," an expert said.

Analysis

The end of street anonymity — is Europe ready for that?

The EU's AI Act, despite setting global standards, fails to ban facial recognition in public spaces — setting a concerning precedent for many. Is Europe really ready to sacrifice street anonymity for enhanced security?

Jailed Iranian Nobel Peace Prize winner 'won't give in'

Earlier in December, Iranian activist Narges Mohammadi was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo. As she is imprisoned in Iran, her family accepted the prize in her name. EUobserver talked with her family.

Rule-of-law rallies in Slovakia test Fico's new regime

After fewer than 100 days in power, Slovak prime minister Robert Fico is facing protests over attempts to halt prosecutions of his allies, under a bill set to also delay the iconic Kuciak case.

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Opinion

Tusk's difficult in-tray on Poland's judicial independence

What is obvious is that PiS put in place a set of interlocking safeguards for itself which, even after their political defeat in Poland, will render it very difficult for the new government to restore the rule of law.

Brussels denies having no 'concern' on Spain's amnesty law

The Spanish government remains secretive about its negotiations with pro-independence Catalans, but claims the EU Commission has "zero concerns" about their proposed amnesty law for Catalan separatists. The EU executive denies that.

EU approves €920m for Hungary, despite rule-of-law fears

In a controversial move, the European Commission has approved the release of €920m to Hungary under Budapest's recovery and resilience plan — despite concerns over the rule of law and democratic backsliding.

Analysis

How Wilders' Dutch extremism goes way beyond Islamophobia

Without losing sight of his pervasive Islamophobia, it is essential to note Geert Wilders' far-right extremism extends to other issues that could drastically alter the nature of Dutch politics — and end its often constructive role in advancing EU policies.

Orban's sovereignty bill seen as fresh attack on rule of law

Hungary's new sovereignty law has been criticised by the opposition as 'another dark milestone' for the country's democratic values and the rule of law — and it could bring yet another clash between Budapest and Brussels.

Analysis

Why Spain's amnesty deal with Catalans is source of resentment

Spain's new amnesty law for Catalan separatists has sparked protests across the country, fueling concerns about the rule of law, judicial independence, and accountability. But why is the bill so problematic? And who opposes it?

Kaczynski decries 'German' takeover of Polish parliament

PiS leader Jarosław Kaczyński has rallied against the EU treaty, dubbed Donald Tusk's opposition a "German party," and warned of Poland's independence being at risk. Meanwhile, the pro-democratic coalition has unveiled its 24-point programme, which lacks concrete detail.

One in two countries in democratic decline, finds study

Half of countries saw a decline in at least one indicator of democracy from 2017-2022 —and Europe is no exception to a "worrying deterioration" in rule of law and press freedom, says rInternational Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance.

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