European Union

EU calls on Turkish ambassador to explain Erdogan comments

The European Union has called on Turkey's ambassador to the EU to explain apparently threatening remarks made by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan towards the bloc, a spokeswoman for the EU's foreign affairs service said Thursday.

Host of EU summit Rome tightens security after London attack

Italian Interior Minister Marco Minniti met with intelligence and anti-terrorism officials Thursday to assess threat levels after the London attack and ahead of an EU summit in Rome.

EU's Brexit negotiator: EU will be 'friendly' but 'never naive'

The European Union will aim for a successful agreement over the terms of Britain's exit from the bloc, EU chief negotiator for Brexit Michel Barnier said Wednesday.

60 years after Treaty of Rome, EU again faces challenges

The European Union (EU) is facing a number of challenges that it can resolve through better communication with citizens and by overcoming narrow national perspectives of common problems and insisting on common values, a conference on the future of the EU heard in Zagreb on Wednesday.

PM: We must not fall into the trap of multi-speed Europe

Croatia should be very careful about the idea of a multi-speed Europe and must not fall into this trap, but needs to keep it open so that the EU would not become an exclusive directory of the five most influential members which will then make decisions for everyone about everything, Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic said on Wednesday at a conference about the future of the European Union.

Erdogan threatens Europeans, hits back over detention of journalists

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has warned Europeans that they may not be safe if Europe's current approach to his country continues, in his latest salvo in a heated row between the two sides.

Pristina sends protest note to EU countries in wake of bus attack in Serbia

The Kosovo Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Tuesday sent a protest note to European Union member states in the wake of an attack on a bus from Kosovo while travelling through Serbia.

Erdogan: Turkey won't be threatened by talk of EU accession process

Threats about Turkey's accession process towards EU membership

'EU open for business' leaders say, as Japan's PM pushes trade deal

"The EU is open for business," European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker told Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Tuesday, before heading into a meeting convened to push for a swift conclusion of a free trade agreement between Japan and the EU by the end of this year.

Britain to trigger Brexit negotiations on March 29

Prime Minister Theresa May will trigger formal negotiations on Britain leaving the European Union on March 29, the British government said on Monday.

Croatia among 11 EU countries to reach national targets for share of renewables

The share of energy from renewable sources in gross final consumption of energy in the European Union grew significantly in 2015 towards a target of 20% to be reached by 2020, and 11 countries, including Croatia, have already met their national targets, Eurostat says.

Germany threatens Turkish politicians with ban on public appearances

Germany has threatened Turkish politicians with a ban on public appearances, in an escalating war of words triggered by the refusal of several European countries to allow the Turkish government to hold rallies in support of constitutional change.

Nicola Sturgeon refuses to back down over Scottish independence

Scottish leader Nicola Sturgeon said Friday she would not give up on seeking an independence referendum after Prime Minister Theresa May said now was "not the time" to discuss a vote.

Petrov says hesitating with EU enlargement could further destabilise S-E Europe

The prospect of EU membership for Southeast European countries is very important, Croatian Parliament Speaker Bozo Petrov said in Rome on Friday, where he was attending a conference of EU parliament speakers on the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome.

Erdogan calls on Turks in Europe to show pride and have more children

Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Friday called on people with Turkish origins living in Europe to have five children, as a row with European leaders shows no signs of abating.

Turkish daily brands Merkel 'Frau Hitler' on front page

An image of German Chancellor Angela Merkel as 'Frau Hitler' was splashed across the front page of a Turkish tabloid on Friday, amid a bitter diplomatic row between Turkey and several European countries.

EU commissioner takes aim at US with criticism of aid cuts

The European commissioner for international cooperation and development on Friday indirectly criticized cuts in US foreign aid, saying that any cuts on development assistance went against global development goals.

Philippines tells off EU for seeking release of Duterte critic

The Philippine government on Friday told the European Parliament to “mind their own business” after it called for the release of President Rodrigo Duterte’s top critic detained on illegal drug charges.

Schulz: EU membership for Turkey completely ruled out at present

Martin Schulz, Angela Merkel's main challenger in the upcoming German elections, says Turkey has no chance of joining the EU for the time being.

Stoltenberg urges NATO members to tone down "rhetoric"

All NATO member states should tone down their "rhetoric" and avoid fuelling tensions within the military alliance and instead focus on exterior threats, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said Thursday during a visit to Denmark.

EU countries register 1.2 million asylum seekers in 2016

EU member states registered just over 1.2 million first-time asylum applications in 2016, which is slightly lower than the number of asylum claims submitted in 2015, the European Union's statistical office said Thursday.

Turkish foreign minister warns of potential 'religious war' in Europe

Turkey's Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu warned Thursday at a campaign rally that Europe was losing its unity and could again sink back into religious wars.

Turkey blocks NATO work with partner countries amid EU accession row

The divisions between Turkey and other European countries have spilled over into NATO, complicating operations there, official Austrian sources confirmed Wednesday in Vienna.

Istanbul dumps Rotterdam as its twin city amid row with the Dutch

Istanbul's city council cancelled its partnership with the Dutch city of Rotterdam, amid a dispute over campaign rallies by Turkish ministers in the Netherlands.

Agreement on European partnership between Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina drafted

The Council of Ministers of Bosnia and Herzegovina on Wednesday drafted an agreement with the Croatian government on European partnership which should ensure that Bosnia and Herzegovina more readily meets European Union membership criteria.

Stier says Croatia strongly for Montenegro's NATO, EU membership

Croatia supports Montenegro on its European and Euro-Atlantic journey and believes this is in Europe's geo-strategic as well as security interest, Croatian Foreign Minister Davor Ivo Stier said in Zagreb on Wednesday after talks with his Montenegrin counterpart Srdjan Darmanovic.

Hungary ordered to pay rejected asylum seekers 10,000 euros each

Hungary said Tuesday it was "unbelievable" it would have to pay a pair of Bangladeshi asylum seekers 10,000 euros (10,602 dollars) each because a court ruled they had not been safe from degrading treatment during a 23-day detention.

Polish member of EU parliament to appeal punishment for sexist tirade

A Polish member of the EU Parliament, who was punished Tuesday for calling women "weaker" and "less intelligent" during a debate this month, will appeal the penalty, he told dpa.

Polish member of EU Parliament punished for sexist tirade

A Polish member of the EU Parliament was punished Tuesday for calling women "weaker" and "less intelligent" during a debate this month, a clip of which went viral online.

Croatia among countries with largest drops in incarceration rate

The number of people held in European prisons dropped by 6.8% in 2015 from the previous year, but prison overcrowding remained a problem in 15 European countries, the Council of Europe said in its annual penal statistics report on Tuesday.

Turkey imposes political sanctions on Netherlands over rally ban

Turkey has responded to the Netherlands' ban on Turkish ministers' foreign campaigning by closing off its airspace to Dutch diplomats and halting all high-level discussions with the country.

NATO and EU call on Turkey to cut the harsh rhetoric in rally row

NATO and the European Union urged Ankara on Monday to tone down its angry rhetoric over the cancellation of Turkish campaign rallies in the Netherlands and Germany.

Six detained in pro-Turkey demonstration in Amsterdam

Six people were detained at a pro-Turkey protest in Amsterdam that turned violent, Dutch police said Monday.

Council of Europe chief calls for dialogue over Turkish rallies

The secretary general of the Council of Europe calls for "constructive dialogue" on the holding of electoral rallies for Turkish citizens in other European countries.

Report: Britain must prepare for possibility of no deal on Brexit

The British government must prepare for the possibility that it could fail to negotiate a Brexit agreement, or face the risk of "mutually assured damage" from leaving the European Union without an exit deal, a parliamentary report said on Sunday.

Brexit minister urges lawmakers not to 'tie May's hands' in key vote

Britain's Conservative government appealed to lawmakers on Sunday not to "tie the prime minister's hands" by amending a bill that would trigger two years of formal negotiations on Britain leaving the European Union.

Croatian PM for demystifying multi-speed Europe; Juncker: It's no new Iron Curtian

The multi-speed Europe concept should be demystified and it is important that it does not exclude anyone, Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic said in Brussels on Friday at the end of a EU27 summit, while European Commission Presdent Jean-Claude Juncker said it did not mean the creation of a new iron curtain.

Leaders of 27 EU member states stress unity as they brace for Brexit

Leaders of the 27 member states remaining in the European Union after Britain's planned exit discussed the bloc's future at an informal summit in Brussels Friday, calling for unity in face of growing external and internal pressures.

Council of Europe experts: Turkey vote could lead to one-person rule

Turkey risks installing a "one-person regime" under constitutional reforms being put to a referendum next month, experts in the Council of Europe warned on Friday.

EU membership alone not enough for steady growth, says minister

European Union membership alone is not enough to keep a stable and lasting economic growth, which needs an additional push through business cost cuts, a stimulating entrepreneurial climate and stronger competitiveness, Croatian Economy Minister Martina Dalic said on Friday.

Croatian PM says EU leaders have encouraged S-E Europe

European Union leaders have sent a message of encouragement to Southeast European countries and confirmed their European prospects, Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic said in Brussels on Friday.

Project providing access to Croatian public e-services for other EU countries' citizens launched

The Croatian Public Administration Ministry on Friday launched a project enabling citizens from other EU member-states to access Croatian public e-services that are part of the e-Citizens for EU/EEA Citizens system.

Tusk re-elected European Council President

The leaders of the European Union's member-states on Thursday re-elected former Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk the European Council President despite efforts to oust him by his home country Poland.

ECJ: Parking fines enforceable across EU if issued by courts

The European Court of Justice on Thursday ruled that parking fines are enforceable in European Union member-states provided they are issued by a judicial court.

Europol investigating 5,000 organized crime groups

Some 5,000 organized crime groups are active in Europe, with more than one-third of the rings involved in illicit drug trade, the EU law enforcement agency Europol said in a large-scale report Thursday.

Turkish law prohibits campaigning abroad - as row with Europe deepens

Turkish law prohibits election campaigning outside the country. Despite this, the Turkish government has become deeply enmeshed in a battle with European countries, especially Germany, over bans on rallies in several towns.

Sturgeon hints at Scottish independence vote in late 2018

Scottish leader Nicola Sturgeon has hinted that another referendum on whether the country wants to stay a part of Britain could take place in late 2018.

Britain rejects EU demand it repay 2 billion euros in custom duties

British customs authorities on Wednesday rejected demands from the EU's anti-fraud office that Britain repay 1.987 billion euros (2.1 billion dollars) in lost customs duties for Chinese textile and footwear imports.

Survey: Germans want the EU to change

Germans want the European Union to change, although there is no consensus on how, according to a YouGov survey published Wednesday.

Britain tries to Brexit-proof the economy with cautious 2017 budget

The British Treasury announced stronger than expected economic growth Wednesday but vowed to save for a rainy day to help Brexit-proof the country ahead of its departure from the European Union.

Hungary warned migrant camps plan may breach European rights law

A new Hungarian law under which all migrants and refugees reaching the country would be placed in transit camps is likely to contravene European human rights law, the Council of Europe's rights chief warned Wednesday.

Britain should repay 1.987 billion euros says EU anti-fraud office

Britain should repay 1.987 billion euros (2.1 billion dollars) in lost customs duties for Chinese textile and footwear imports, to the EU budget, the EU anti-fraud office (OLAF) said Wednesday.

Austrian chancellor: Cut EU money to countries that refuse refugees

Austria's chancellor Christian Kern wants a major cut in European Union subsidies for countries that refuse to accept refugees, German media reported early Wednesday.

May suffers second blow to passage of bill on triggering Brexit

The British parliament's upper house backed an amendment to Prime Minister Theresa May's bill to trigger formal Brexit talks, insisting on votes in both houses of parliament before an agreement is finalized with the European Union.

Germany's Schaeuble clashes with Trump White House over trade surplus

German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble clashed on Tuesday with the new US administration over its claims that Europe's biggest economy enjoyed trade surpluses as a result of currency manipulation.

May braced for Lords to demand parliamentary veto on EU Brexit deal

British Prime Minister Theresa May is braced for another blow to her Brexit timetable Tuesday, as parliament’s upper house may make further changes to the legislation required to launch EU departure negotiations.

Refugee groups worry as Hungary moves to put asylum seekers in camps

All refugees and migrants who reach Hungary are to be placed in camps under legislation approved by the nation's legislature on Tuesday, a move the UN refugee agency (UNHCR) said would have a "terrible impact" on traumatized people.

Stier: EU agrees it must step up engagement in Bosnia

European Union foreign ministers agree the EU should step up its engagement in Southeast Europe and have supported Croatia's position that it is necessary to encourage those responsible in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) to agree election law changes by June, Croatian Foreign Minister Davor Ivo Stier said on Monday.

EU to establish military command headquarters for support missions

The European Union took a step towards greater military coordination on Monday as EU foreign and defence ministers unanimously agreed to establish a command headquarters so they can better plan and conduct support missions abroad.

Lajcak says 2 countries in W. Balkans about to break up, 3 in deep crisis

The European Union is becoming a less and less serious interlocutor in enlargement matters, having abandoned the Western Balkans, as a result of which two states there are on the verge of breaking up and three are in a deep crisis, Slovakian Foreign Minister Miroslav Lajcak said in Brussels on Monday.

EU clears Hungarian state aid for construction of nuclear reactors

Hungary's plan to grant financial support for the construction of two new nuclear reactors does not violate EU competition laws, the European Commission said Monday.

Eurobarometer shows Croatia hasn't lost trust in EU

Croatian citizens are among the more optimistic ones about the future of the European Union, with the optimistic ones exceeding the EU28 average by 9 percentage points, according to a survey commissioned by the European Commission.

Austrian chancellor: Ban campaigning by Turkish politicians in EU

Austrian Chancellor Christian Kern has called for an EU-wide ban on election campaign appearances by Turkish politicians, in the Sunday edition of German newspaper Die Welt.

Bosnia's party leaders pledge commitment to EU integration

The European Union High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini, met in Sarajevo on Saturday with leaders of Bosnia and Herzegovina's seven largest parliamentary parties, who said after the meeting that they had all agreed to focus on implementing the necessary reforms in the period ahead.

Mogherini calls on Bosnia to continue reforms

The European Union High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini, has called on Bosnia and Herzegovina to continue implementing reforms so it can draw closer to EU membership, pledging full support from Brussels on that path.

Lords say Britain can leave EU without paying 'divorce bill'

Britain can walk away from the European Union without paying a 60-billion-euro (64-billion-dollar) "divorce bill" that is reportedly being demanded by Brussels, a House of Lords committee advised.

EP president not ruling out "multi-speed Europe"

European Parliament President Antonio Tajani, who was on a working visit to Slovenia on Friday, spoke of the future development of the European Union as part of a debate initiated by the European Commission, not ruling out the idea of "a multi-speed Europe".

Trump, Merkel to meet in bid to forge new trans-Atlantic relationship

German Chancellor Angela Merkel travels to Washington this month for her first face-to-face meeting with US President Donald Trump following a testy start to their relationship.

Serb nationalists jeer EU's top diplomat as she addresses parliament

Serbian nationalist lawmakers on Friday chanted and jeered to drown out the European Union's chief diplomat, Federica Mogherini, as she addressed parliament.

Juncker says western Balkan countries need European perspective

Countries in the western Balkans must have a European perspective but they cannot count on membership prior to 2019, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said talking to young Slovenians during his visit to Ljubljana on Thursday.

Stier says no border arbitration with Slovenia, EC can't interfere

Croatian Foreign Minister Davor Ivo Stier on Thursday dismissed as unacceptable European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker's position that it was necessary to accept the arbitration procedure in the Croatian-Slovenian border dispute, adding that this, under a Croatian parliament decision, was now strictly a matter of bilateral agreement.

Stier: Croatia and Hungary vitally interested in Bosnia's stability

Croatia, together with Hungary, is vitally interested in the preservation of stability in Bosnia and Herzegovina and the two countries will do their best to assist in that, Croatian Foreign Minister Davor Ivo Stier said in Sarajevo on Thursday.

Croatia continues to record largest annual drop in unemployment among EU countries

Croatia was among the European Union countries with the highest unemployment rates in January, but recorded the sharpest annual drop in unemployment for the sixth consecutive month, Eurostat data showed on Thursday.

Danish border controls bar almost 3,000 people from entry

Denmark has barred almost 3,000 people from entering the country from Germany since the introduction of temporary border checks in early 2016, the Danish government said Thursday.

EU calls on member states to step up migrant returns

EU member states should intensify efforts, close up loopholes and increase cooperation to more effectively return migrants who do not qualify for staying in the bloc, the European Commission said Thursday.

Plenkovic: EU should strengthen democracy, serve its citizens, play global role

The European Union should strengthen the democratic legitimacy of its institutions and prevent demagogy and populism as well as achieve concrete benefits for its citizens and play a global role, Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic told the public broadcaster HRT on Wednesday in a comment on post-Brexit EU reform proposals.

Five scenarios for the future of the European Union

The European Commission presented a paper Wednesday on the future of the European Union after Brexit, calling on EU leaders and the European Parliament to decide how the bloc should evolve by 2025.

German unemployment rate at record low as economy gains momentum

Germany's unemployment rate held at a record low in February, adding to signs that Europe's biggest economy has entered the new year on a strong footing, according to data released on Wednesday.

EU court lacks jurisdiction over migrants' EU-Turkey deal complaint

The General Court of the European Union said on Tuesday it does not have the jurisdiction to pass judgement on a case brought about by three asylum seekers against a migration deal struck between EU member states and Turkey.

As Europe hardens its line on migration, children bear the brunt

The number of children arriving on their own in Europe doubled in 2016, and is set to increase this year. But the response by governments has not matched the need, pushing some into criminality and prostitution.

Business group urges Britain to delay Brexit if negotiations stall

The British government should push to extend Brexit negotiations if it is unable to agree a deal on leaving the European Union within two years, a business group said on Tuesday.

EU tightens sanctions on North Korea in response to nuclear test

The European Union tightened sanctions against North Korea on Monday adding import bans and other restrictions to already tough measures in place against the reclusive regime.

Serbia opens two more policy areas in its EU accession talks

Serbia on Monday opened two new policy areas in its EU entry talks, thus bringing the number of opened policy areas to eight.

EU ambassador to Albania Romana Vlahutin under 24-hour police protection

EU Ambassador to Albania Romana Vlahutin and her family have been given 24-hour armed police protection due to threats she has been receiving lately, the Austrian paper Der Standard said on Saturday, explaining that the threats were linked to Vlahutin's monitoring of a reform of Albania's judiciary designed to curb corruption in that country.

Poll: Majority of Greeks want new savings reforms to avoid elections

Over 60 per cent of Greeks are in favour of striking a new deal to unlock a fresh bailout from creditors as an alternative to snap polls, according to a survey commissioned by the To Vima newspaper.

Cretu says Croatia must accelerate apsorbtion of European funds

The Commissioner also said that for the 2014-2020 period, Croatia would have twice the amount from the previous period at its disposal -- a total of EUR 10.67 billion.

Merkel calls for fewer EU regulations as nationalist sentiments grow

As voters in the Netherlands, France and Germany show increasing support for nationalist, euro-sceptic political movements ahead of this year's elections, German Chancellor Angela Merkel has called for limits on EU regulations.

SDP leader: Brexit, Europe's cross road

Social Democratic Party (SDP) leader Davor Bernadic on Friday said at a conference of the Party of European Socialists (PES) that Great Britain's exit is a cross-road for the European Union (EU).

German foreign minister: Positive Trump comment on EU is 'good news'

German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel welcomes US President Donald Trump's recent positive comments on the European Union, calling them "good news," during a press conference Friday.

SDP urges gov't to put situation in Bosnia on EU and NATO agendas

Croatia's largest opposition party has called on the government to put the situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina on the EU and NATO agendas saying that reactions by some political groups in that country to the submission of the motion to the ICJ to review its ruling against Serbia could lead to serious political instability and threaten the functioning of the state.

Nearly 60% of lower secondary school pupils in EU studying more than one foreign language

Nearly 60 percent of lower secondary school pupils in the European Union studied more than one foreign language, the EU statistical office said.

Maltese FM on behalf of EU calls for preservation of stability in BiH

Maltese Foreign Minister George Vella said in Sarajevo on Thursday that his country, as the current chair of the European Union, closely followed the developments in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) and other parts of the Western Balkans.

EU anti-fraud office eyeing claims against Merkel challenger Schulz

Martin Schulz's time as European Parliament president could become the subject of a probe by EU's anti-fraud office it emerged on Thursday.

Le Pen's chief of staff indicted in European Parliament jobs probe

The chief of staff of Marine Le Pen, the far-right candidate for president in upcoming French elections, was indicted Wednesday over allegations of irregular reimbursements from the European Parliament, a judicial source told dpa.

Serbia's EU negotiator says minority rights neglected

The head of the Serbia's European Union accession negotiation team, Tanja Miscevic, said in Novi Sad on Wednesday that minority rights had been neglected for many years and added that positive results in that regard cannot be achieved over night, the Beta news agency has reported. 

Croatian PM receives EIB Vice-President

Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic met on Wednesday with European Investment Bank (EIB) Vice-President Dario Scannapieco for talks on the bank's contribution to a new investment cycle in Croatia and its support to the Croatian government to implement key projects, a press release from the government's office said.

EU calls on Germany to reduce large current account surplus

The European Commission on Wednesday called on Germany, the bloc's biggest economy, to reduce its large current account surplus and focus on boosting domestic consumption.

EU seeks to fine Austria for misrepresenting debt data

The European Commission was seeking to slap a fine of close to 30 million euros (31.5 million dollars) on Austria after one of its states reported incorrect debt data to the EU's statistical office, EU Commissioner Marianne Thyssen said Wednesday.

Croatian crime victims still not exercising rights enjoyed by victims in other EU countries

Victims of crime in Croatia still cannot exercise the rights exercised by victims of crime in other EU member-countries, and the biggest problem is that the national legislation still does not incorporate the EU directive on the protection of victims of crime, heard a conference held in Zagreb on Wednesday on the occasion of the European Day for Victims of Crime.

Brexit bill: House of Lords says public can change mind on leaving EU

The British public should be able to change their minds on Brexit - just as Prime Minister Theresa May did, the upper chamber of parliament heard Tuesday during a marathon debate on legislation to kick off EU negotiations.