Friday, November 22nd 2019: EU urges end to violence in Iran, EU Parliament tables resolution to declare climate emergency, EU still cautious on threat of US car tariffs


EU urges end to violence in Iran: A spokeswoman for the EU on Thursday expressed condolences to the families of those killed during protests in Iran and called for dialogue to resolve the tensions. She said the EU expected Iran’s security forces to exercise restraint in handling the protests and for protesters to demonstrate peacefully. Any violence was unacceptable. The spokeswoman also urged Iranian authorities to ensure the free flow of information and access to the internet. Iran’s Revolutionary Guards said on Thursday that calm had returned across the country. The semi-official ISNA news agency announced that the internet has been restored in the southern Iranian province of Hormozgan.,,

EU Parliament tables resolution to declare climate emergency: The European Parliament will vote next week on whether a climate emergency should be proclaimed in Europe. A growing number of states and local administrations have already made similar declarations. Renew Europe (formerly Alde, the liberal group in the EU Parliament) has asked parliament to adopt a resolution calling on the EU Commission and EU countries to take action to initiate a society-wide mobilization. The resolution is also in line with the negotiations of the EU’s next multi-annual budget, where the Commission and EU Parliament say they want to further budgetary efforts to tackle climate change and turn the related challenges into economic opportunities. The proclamation of a climate emergency is a symbolic act to raise awareness of climate change and plan for laws.

Vote on new EU Commission on Wednesday: The European Parliament will vote on the new Commission next Wednesday. If it is a favorable vote, the EU Commisison will be able to start its work on December 1st. After meeting with the Commission’s three executive Vice Presidents-designate, EU Parliament President David Sassoli told a press conference the College of Commissioners would be presented to the parliament in Strasbourg on Wednesday. 27 EU member states have made their nominations, but the United Kingdom failed to put names forward, leading to the Commission to begin infringement proceedings against the UK.,

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EU still cautious on threat of US car tariffs: The European Union is still uncertain about whether the United States could impose further tariffs on European car exports, EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström said on Thursday. Ater a meeting of EU trade commissioners, Malmström said the good news was that the US did not announce any new tariffs on EU cars and car parts on the November 13th deadline. But she also warned that this threat was not entirely gone.

European Court of Human Rights: Transit zones at the border are allowed
Singapore: EU-Singapore trade agreement enters into force
Zimbabwe: EU worried about recent political developments in Zimbabwe
Study: EU and member states are biggest development donor group in the world
“Extinction Rebellion”: Co-founder Hallam apologizes for Holocaust remarks


Whoever is in government in the UK in a few weeks’ time, whoever is prime minister, we will be happy to sit down with them, listen to what they say and work with them.
Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar has said if the British government wanted to talk about a customs union with the EU, or closer alignment with the single market, then Ireland would be open to this.


Migrants found in sealed container on ferry to Ireland: The crew of a passenger ferry traveling to Ireland from France discovered 16 migrants stowed aboard in a sealed trailer on Thursday, a spokesman for the vessel’s Swedish operator Stena Line said. The migrants were found during a routine inspection on board the ferry. Cyprus authorities have rescued 120 Syrian migrants from a boat adrift off the island’s southeastern coast, police said on Thursday. Spanish rescue ship “Open Arms” has rescued around 73 migrants from a packed rubber dinghy that had been drifting off the Libyan coast for nearly 24 hours. Meanwhile, about 200 migrants are still on the Norwegian rescue vessel “Ocean Viking”. (Ireland); (Cyprus);, (Rescue ships)

Hungarian government must apologize for misleading survey: Hungary’s top court ruled on Wednesday that Prime Minister Viktor Orban’s government had published misleading and falsely presented facts about a refugee rights group in a questionnaire sent to millions of households in 2017. The Supreme Court ruled that the government had damaged the reputation of NGO Hungarian Helsinki Committee over the national consultation questionnaire about US billionaire George Soros, ordered an apology and compensation of €6,000.

Greek economy to grow in 2020: Greece expects its economy to grow by 2.8% next year, driven by higher investments, improving domestic demand and tax cuts as the country recovers from a decade-long debt crisis. Greece emerged from international bailouts supervised by its lenders in August 2018. But it still needs to meet fiscal targets, including a primary budget surplus of 3.5% of GDP up to 2022. Finance Minister Christos Staikouras told reporters on Thursday that Greece will conclude an early repayment of loans from the International Monetary Fund next week, a move which helps Greece reduce its debt-servicing costs.

Serbia accuses Russia of spying: Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic announced Thursday that Serbian intelligence agencies have uncovered a wide-ranging intelligence operation involving Russian spies and members of the Serbian military. Vucic ordered an investigation after a video emerged purporting to show a Russian diplomat or intelligence officer handover a wad of cash to a Serbian man. The video showed a man identified as Lt. Col. Georgy Kleban, a former assistant military attache at Russia’s embassy in Belgrade, meeting a Serbian retired army officer. One of the men is seen handing over a carrier bag to the second man, whose face is blurred in the video but is said to be Serbian. However, Vucic said the spy scandal should not harm relations between Serbia and Russia, adding he was sure that Russian President Vladimir Putin was not informed about this.,

Greece: Protest against deportation camp on Samos
Georgia: Thousands protest ruling party’s broken promises
Catalonia: Puigdemont and Comin demand to take seats in EU Parliament
France: Government wants to comply with EU deficit rules 2020 despite overspending
Germany: Merkel pledges bigger European share of 5G network
Sweden: Europe’s center for clan crime

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Greenpeace steals the “C” from German CDU party headquarters: German activists with Greenpeace removed the 6.5-foot-tall “C” from the headquarters of the Christian Democrats (CDU) in Berlin on Thursday. To the remaining “DU” — German for “you” — they added a banner reading, “should protect the climate.” Greenpeace said it planned the logo letter theft to protest against the CDU’s disastrous climate policies. Last week, parliament approved the German government’s climate protection plan, which was criticized by environmental groups for not going far enough. CDU leader and German Defense Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer appeared to take the protest in stride. She said the CDU was happy to lend Greenpeace its “C”, which stood for Christianity and sustainability, for a short time. CDU secretary general Paul Ziemiak posted a picture of himself from the party conference posing with another, older copy of the party’s logo. “We’re in luck since the original ‘C’ is here in Leipzig,” he wrote.,


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