Wednesday, 29 September 2021: Greece to buy French warships, EU approves relief funds for member states hurt by Brexit, Europe must stop being naive, Macron says

⊂ EUROPE ⊃

Greece to buy French warships: Greece and France have signed a multibillion-euro military agreement, a deal hailed by the leaders of both countries as a bold first step towards deeper military cooperation on the continent. Under the terms of the deal, which Greek media are reporting to be worth €5bn, France will deliver three state-of-the art Belharra frigates to Greece by 2025, with the option of a fourth warship also on offer. The agreement was not only a sign of confidence in French production but “an audacious first step towards European strategic autonomy”, French President Emmanuel Macron said.
theguardian.com

Von der Leyen concerned about tensions between Kosovo and Serbia: EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen has expressed concern about the tensions on the border between Serbia and Kosovo. She called on both sides to return to negotiations. De-escalation was important now, von der Leyen said at a joint press conference with the Prime Minister of Northern Macedonia, Zoran Zaev, in Skopje. NATO troops stepped up patrols in Kosovo on Monday near border crossings which have been blocked by local Serbs angered by a ban on cars with Serbian licence plates entering the country in a mounting confrontation. The ambassadors of the informal Quint decision-making group – including France, Germany, Italy, the UK and the US – have urged for a de-escalation of the crisis in northern Kosovo. The request came in a Monday meeting with Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic in Belgrade, his office said in a press release.
nau.ch, reuters.com, euractiv.com

EU approves relief funds for member states hurt by Brexit: EU governments on Tuesday greenlit €5.4 billion in emergency aid for member states whose economies are being negatively impacted by Brexit. Ireland and France will be the two top recipients of the aid. The EU has said the money will benefit both public and private entities in the bloc. The money is intended to cover costs and compensate financial losses which were caused by the UK’s withdrawal.
dw.com

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EU states approve tougher tax rules for companies: Large corporations in the EU will soon have to make public how much tax they pay in each state. The EU Council of Ministers approved a law to ensure more transparency. The decision of the EU Parliament is still pending, but approval is considered a formality. Under the new rules, multinational companies with more than €750 million in global turnover will have to provide insight into their accounts. Among other things, companies based in the EU must publish the income taxes actually paid and list subsidiaries. The data is to be broken down for all EU states, as well as for the states on the EU list for tax havens. EU finance ministers are set to remove the Seychelles, Dominica and Anguilla from the bloc’s blacklist of tax havens next week, documents seen by Reuters indicate.
zeit.de, reuters.com

Europe must stop being naive, Macron says: Europe needs to stop being naive when it comes to defending its interests and build its own military capacity, French President Emmanuel Macron said on Tuesday. “The Europeans must stop being naive. When we are under pressure from powers, which at times harden (their stance), we need to react and show that we have the power and capacity to defend ourselves. Not escalating things, but protecting ourselves,” Macron said.
france24.com

European Central Bank won’t overreact to fleeting inflation: Europe’s current burst of inflation is temporary and won’t lead the European Central Bank to “overreact” by withdrawing stimulus or raising interest rates, ECB President Christine Lagarde said Tuesday. “What we are seeing now is mostly a phase of temporary inflation linked to reopening,” Lagarde said in a speech in Frankfurt, Germany opening the ECB’s annual forum on central banking.
apnews.com

Energy: EU leaders to discuss soaring energy prices reuters.com
Gas: EU lawmakers vote to prolong fossil fuel gas subsidies until 2027 theguardian.com
Tech: US-EU tech trade summit clouded by French reservations reuters.com
Afghanistan: US military leaders answer for how the war in Afghanistan ended dw.com
Assange: CIA officials under Trump discussed assassinating Julian Assange – report theguardian.com
Protection of civil rights: Hungary’s Prime Minister Orban rejects meeting with EU delegation orf.at
Russia: Authorities open new criminal case against Kremlin critic Navalny politico.eu
WHO finds 80 alleged sexual abuse cases during Ebola work in Democratic Republic of Congo dw.com

⊂ QUOTE OF THE DAY ⊃

When we are under pressure,…showing that we also have power and the capacity to defend ourselves…is simply making ourselves be respected.
European nations must boost their defence plans and make themselves “respected,” French President Emmanuel Macron said Tuesday.
apnews.com

⊂ COUNTRIES ⊃

Dutch politician arrested on suspicion of plotting to murder Prime Minister Rutte: Dutch police have arrested a politician in the Hague on suspicion of involvement in a plot to assassinate Prime Minister Mark Rutte. The prime minister’s security service said Arnoud van Doorn, the leader of The Hague Unity Party, was arrested on Sunday. He displayed suspicious behaviour as he walked through the same area of the city as Rutte, the service said. Van Doorn was released on Monday after a police interrogation. In 2012, van Doorn converted to Islam shortly after leaving Geert Wilders’ Freedom Party, later founding his own Party for Unity, which failed to win a seat in this year’s parliamentary election.
bbc.com, politico.eu

French Greens choose Yannick Jadot as candidate for 2022 presidential election: France’s Greens on Tuesday chose Yannick Jadot, a 54-year-old member of the European Parliament, as their candidate to challenge President Emmanuel Macron in next year’s presidential election. Jadot, the only French Greens member with nationwide name recognition, has promised a pragmatic solutions-driven approach to environmental policies. Jadot won 51.03% of the votes, edging out Sandrine Rousseau, an economist who had campaigned as an „eco-feminist,“ calling for more dramatic changes.
france24.com, politico.eu

Public prosecutor to investigate Salvini’s social media guru: On Monday, Italy’s public prosecutor said that it would be investigating Luca Morisi for the sale and possession of “liquid drugs” after he resigned from his position as Matteo Salvini’s social media strategist. The news sparked significant reactions as many of the League’s social media posts, created under his supervision, have repeatedly targeted migrants, singling them out as drug dealers and criminals.
euractiv.com

Post-election rifts emerge in Germany’s centre-right alliance: Markus Söder, a leading German conservative, has made a public show of congratulating the Social Democrats’ candidate on winning Sunday’s national election. He said the Social Democrats’ candidate Olaf Scholz was frontrunner to become Germany’s next leader, undermining the claims of the conservative candidate Armin Laschet that the 25.7%-24.1% result was too narrow to amount to a clear mandate. “Olaf Scholz has the best chances to become chancellor,” Söder said. “That’s crystal clear”. Laschet has reportedly declined to congratulated Scholz on winning the vote.
theguardian.com

Survivors of 2015 Paris attacks relive the horror in court: Survivors of the November 2015 Paris attacks have begun testifying at a historic trial, reliving the night of horror in the presence of more than a dozen accused in court. One by one during the coming weeks, 300 survivors as well as family members of the victims of the murderous assault on 13 November are to take the stand.
theguardian.com

Hungary, Ukraine summon ambassadors over Russian gas supply deal spat: Ukraine and Hungary summoned one another’s ambassadors on Tuesday in a growing row over Budapest’s signing of a new long-term gas deal with Russia, which Kyiv regards as a threat to its national security.
reuters.com

Lithuania wants to continue turning back migrants at border with Belarus zeit.de
Belarus: Authoritarian leader Lukashenko announces vote on a new constitution in 2022 apnews.com
Czechia will send 50 police officers to guard the Hungary-Serbia border euractiv.com
Bosnian Serbs demand their own army, leader says dw.com
Georgia threatens to arrest exiled ex-president Saakashvili euractiv.com
France: Man who threw egg at Macron in psychiatric treatment abcnews.go.com

⊂ POLITJOBS ⊃

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⊂ LAST BUT NOT LEAST ⊃

Unreleased John Lennon recording sells for £43,000 in Denmark: A cassette tape recording of an interview by Danish schoolboys with John Lennon and Yoko Ono in which the Beatles star sings a previously unreleased song has been sold at auction in Copenhagen for £43,000. The recording took place at a time when Lennon and Ono were calling for an end to the war in Vietnam.
theguardian.com

 

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