⊂ EUROPE ⊃
Tsipras on the defensive: Greek Prime Minister Tsipras is facing internal criticism by his Syriza party and has asked his backbenchers to clarify their positions. Syriza’s political secretariat convened for a second day on Tuesday, in order to prepare a party congress this fall. Conservative opposition politicians demand a statement from Tsipras regarding reports about Ex-Finance Minister Varoufakis. Talks to pave the way for Greece’s third bailout are underway, with officials from its international creditors on the ground in Athens.
Call for eurozone reform: The eurozone’s susceptibility to crises has made the call for reforms ever louder. German Finance Minister Schäuble as well as Economics Minister Gabriel have taken a liking to the proposal of a European financial budget. The German government’s panel of independent economic advisers, however, favors creating an insolvency mechanism for eurozone states and says countries should be able to leave the single currency as a last resort.
Vucic wants more attention for the Balkans: Serbian Prime Minister Vucic has called for more involvement from the EU, especially Germany, in the Balkans. Vucic warned that a war had started and that more attention must be paid to the Balkans. The pro-European politician also urged Germany to make itself less attractive to refugees by giving false asylum seekers less financial support.
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Too many goals complicate development negotiations: Following the International Conference on Financing for Development held in Addis Ababa, the international community has moved on to New York for a marathon conference on the post-2015 development agenda. From July 20th to July 31st, negotiators from the 193 member states of the United Nations will apply the finishing touches to the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that will replace the Millennium Development Goals at the end of this year.
Commission modernises customs procedures: The EU Commission has adopted a legal act to create a simpler, more modern and integrated EU customs system to support cross-border trade and provide for more EU-wide cooperation in customs matters. The Commission has been working for several years on a major overhaul of customs rules in the EU. The basic regulations were changed in 2013. Acts must subsequently be adopted so that the new rules can be applied as of May 1st 2016.
Refugees in Eurotunnel: In a desperate bid to reach England from the French port of Calais, around 2,000 refugees tried to enter the Eurotunnel overnight. A Eurotunnel spokesman said it was the biggest incursion effort in the past month and a half. Calais officials were unable to say if anyone had been injured in their attempts to access the tunnel. The incident caused disruptions to train service in the Eurotunnel for much of Tuesday.
European Union for Foreign Affairs: High Representative Mogherini announces adoption of a modified organisational chart eeas.europa.eu
Human rights dialogue: EU and Belarus hold dialogue in Brussels eeas.europa.eu
Protected Designations of Origin: Cyprus Halloumi cheese set to receive Protected Designation of Origin status europa.eu
EU expansion: Federica Mogherini and Commissioner Hahn on the adoption of the Reform Agenda in Bosnia and Herzegovina europa.eu
Alpine strategy: Commission launches the EU Strategy for the Alpine Region europa.eu
⊂ QUOTES ⊃
“Our only crime was winning 13 percent of vote.”
The Pro-Kurdish HDP chairman Selahattin Demirtas accuses Turkish President Erdogan of punishing the party simply for its electoral success.
“I believe that people like Mr. Blatter, the heads of major international sports federations, deserve special attention and gratitude from public organizations. If anyone should be awarded Nobel Prizes, it is these people.”
Russian President Vladimir Putin believes that embattled FIFA President Sepp Blatter deserves a Nobel Prize for his work leading world soccer’s governing body.
⊂ COUNTRIES ⊃
Turkey ends peace process with Kurds: Turkish President Tayyip Recep Erdogan has called off a peace process with Kurdish militants, saying it was not possible to continue the peace process with those who threaten national unity and brotherhood. Erdogan urged parliament to strip politicians with links to them of immunity from prosecution. NATO ambassadors signalled solidarity with Turkey’s fight against the Islamic State group. Turkey has been flying air strikes against “Islamic State” targets in Syria, but has also targeted Kurdish fighters affiliated with forces battling IS in Syria and Iraq.
reuters.com, dw.com, wsj.com
New Prime Minister in Moldova: The liberal democrat Valeriu Strelet is Moldova’s new prime minister. Moldovan President Nicolae Timofti appointed Strelet to form a new government after talks within the three-party pro-European Union alliance. Strelet’s priority is the restoration of the dialogue with development partners and a deal with the International Monetary Fund.
Greek capital flees to Bulgaria: Thousands of Greek citizens have already opened bank accounts in Bulgaria. Despite Greek controls, it is possible to move up to 14,000 euros per week to the neighbouring low-wage Bulgaria, the poorest member of the EU. Faced with a deep economic crisis at home, at least 11,000 Greek companies have found a safe haven in Bulgaria. The strict controls which were meant to save banks from a collapse have now led to a mass exodus.
Le Pen ouster was not legal: France’s far-right Front National postal ballot , which sought to remove Jean-Marie Le Pen’s title as honorary party president, was unlawful. Le Pen, the French far-right veteran and co-founder of the Front National, has thus won a third legal victory in the increasingly bitter feud with his daughter and party leader, Marine Le Pen. The Versailles appeals court upheld an earlier legal decision in favour of the 87-year-old that annulled his daughter’s attempt to suspend him from the party.
Confusion about alleged prisoner exchange: Behind the scenes there are alleged negotiations about the release of members of the Russian army intelligence service. The two Russians Alexander Alexandrov und Jevgeni Jerofejev, who were captured in the Donbass region, are to be released to Russia according to reports. Meanwhile these reports have been denied. Moscow also denies any military involvement and has distanced itself from the prisoners.
Submarine sank in first World War: A submarine wreck found off Sweden is probably a Russian vessel from World War One, the Swedish military says. The Swedish Armed Forces examined footage filmed by divers from the Ocean X team who found the remains. The divers said the vessel was about 20 meters long and 3.5 meters wide and completely intact, with its hatches closed.
Great Britain: Lord Sewel resigns after sex scandal time.com
Croatia: Former Prime Minister Sanader’s graft convictions sent for retrial reuters.com
Great Britain: Economy on track euronews.com
Austria: Court overturns law imposing losses on Hypo creditors reuters.com
Spain: Two people wounded in shooting telegraph.co.uk
France: Student finds tooth dating back 560000 years theguardian.com
⊂ DATA ⊃
About 400 Europeans die each day of hepatitis B and C, mostly people living in Eastern Europe.
⊂ JOB-BOARD ⊃
politjobs.eu: 350.org seeks campaigner *** Steltemeier & Rawe seeks Senior Associate (m/f) *** 1&1 sucht EU Public Affairs Manager VKU sucht Referentin/en *** Afore Consulting seeks Junior Consultants in European Public Affairs
politjobs.eu, politjobs.eu/submit (Inserat schalten)
⊂ MALFUNCTION ⊃
Russian memory: Russia’s central state archives published documents which revealed that traditional Soviet hero myths from the Second World War were nothing more than fabrications by three newspaper journalists. The publication has caused a wave of indignation in Russia. Many criticize the head of the archive, Sergej Mironenko, for shaking the foundation of the country’s national identity.