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Institutional and Legal Affairs

This category contains 513 posts

The State of the Union [What Think Tanks are thinking]

Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission, laid out his vision of the European Union in his annual State of the Union address to the European Parliament in Strasbourg on 13 September 2017. He noted that the overall outlook has changed for the better over the past year, notably thanks to an accelerating economic recovery. ‘The wind is back in the European sails,’ he declared. Continue reading

Session round-up – Strasbourg, September 2017

In addition to the State of the Union address by European Commission President, Jean-Claude Juncker, the main debates held during Parliament’s September plenary session included questions such as fire safety in buildings, the impact of hurricane Irma, breaches of human rights and a series of statements related to external relations presented by the High Representative, Federica Mogherini. Continue reading

Combating terrorism [EU Legislation in Progress]

In December 2015, the European Commission presented a proposal for a directive on combating terrorism, aimed at updating the current framework on criminalising terrorist offences and at bringing EU legislation into line with international developments, such as the adoption of UN Security Council Resolution 2178 and the Additional Protocol to the Council of Europe Convention on the Prevention of Terrorism. Continue reading

The 2017 State of the Union debate in the European Parliament

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker’s State of the Union address to the European Parliament, and the subsequent debate, on 13 September come in the context of the ongoing broader reflection on the future path of the European Union. Continue reading

Brexit negotiations [What Think Tanks are thinking]

This note offers links to recent commentaries and reports published by major international think tanks and other organisations on EU-UK negotiations and on the implications of Brexit more widely. Continue reading

Reform of the e-Privacy Directive [EU Legislation in Progress][Policy Podcast]

Written by Shara Monteleone, In January 2017, the Commission tabled a proposal for a regulation on privacy and electronic communications which would replace the current 2002 e-Privacy Directive. The main objectives of the review are: enhancing security and communications confidentiality; defining clearer rules on tracking technologies such as cookies; and achieving greater harmonisation among Member … Continue reading

CE marked fertilising products [EU Legislation in Progress]

Written by Didier Bourguignon (3rd edition), Fertilising products are used to improve plant growth, mainly in agriculture, enabling higher crop yields. However, they are associated with some challenges as regards security of supply, the environment and health. Although the 2003 Fertilisers Regulation, which aimed at ensuring an internal market in fertilisers, has been effective, it … Continue reading

De la paix en Europe à la paix dans le monde [What is Europe doing for its citizens?]

Written by Philippe Perchoc, La déclaration Schuman du 9 mai 1950 fait un constat simple : « L’Europe n’a pas été faite, nous avons eu la guerre ». En effet, les tentatives d’union des Européens entamées dans les années 1920 n’avaient pas réussi à empêcher la crise économique de 1929 et la montée des nationalismes conduisant à un … Continue reading

New laws needed for robots [What is Europe doing for its citizens?]

Written by Rafał Mańko, The European Parliament has recently called upon the Commission to table a legislative proposal laying down a set of civil law rules on robotics and artificial intelligence. These should address such issues as liability for damages caused by a robot, as well as establish a European agency for robotics and artificial … Continue reading

Remember, you have the right to be forgotten [What is Europe doing for its citizens?]

Written by Shara Monteleone, Increasing use of digital technologies in almost every daily activity and the related flow of data have made access to and availability of personal data easier for companies, governments and citizens. In particular online, finding information about a fact or a person has become unprecedentedly easy. Data protection as a fundamental … Continue reading

Electoral rights of EU citizens [What is Europe doing for its citizens?]

Written by Laura Tilindyte, EU Treaties establish the right of every Union citizen to participate in the democratic life of the Union (Article 10 TEU). This includes those who have made use of their rights of free movement and reside in a Member State other than that of their nationality. Such citizens can vote and … Continue reading

Reception of asylum-seekers – recast Directive [Legislation in Progress]

Written by Anja Radjenovic (2nd edition), States must treat asylum-seekers and refugees according to the appropriate standards laid down in human rights and refugee law. The current migration crisis revealed wide divergences in the level of reception conditions provided by Member States. While some are facing problems in ensuring adequate and dignified treatment of applicants, … Continue reading

EU and UK positions on citizens’ rights: First phase of Brexit negotiations

Written by Eva-Maria Poptcheva and Laura Tilindyte, Negotiations on the arrangements for the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the EU started on 19 June 2017, with citizens’ rights being one of the top priorities. However, the EU and the UK positions differ considerably. The EU aims at a withdrawal agreement which safeguards the existing right to … Continue reading

The European Council in 2016: Overview of decisions and discussions

Written by Suzana Elena Anghel Gavrilescu, Izabela Cristina Bacian, Ralf Drachenberg and Susanna Tenhunen, The European Council held five formal meetings in 2016. The analysis of the conclusions of the debates shows that it dedicated 50 % of its attention to migration. The two other main topics were foreign and security policy; and economic governance, competitiveness, … Continue reading

The European Commission at mid-term: State of play of President Juncker’s ten priorities

Written by Etienne Bassot and Wolfgang Hiller, At a time when, more than ever, citizens expect the European Union institutions to address their concerns and deliver on promises and commitments made, this analysis provides an overview of the work carried out by the European Commission at the mid-term of its current mandate, notably in the … Continue reading

Simone Veil, European political pioneer

Written by Philippe Perchoc, Simone Veil, the first President of the directly elected European Parliament in 1979, and the first woman to hold the office, died on 30 June 2017, at the age of 89. A prominent French public figure beyond her years in office, she leaves an important and enduring legacy. First President of … Continue reading

Migration into the EU [What Think Tanks are thinking]

Written by Marcin Grajewski, At the European Council meeting of 23 June 2017, European Union Heads of State or Government agreed to strengthen efforts to reduce irregular migration flows on the central Mediterranean route, notably by speeding up training, equipping the Libyan coast guard and improving cooperation with countries of migration origin. However, the European … Continue reading

Start of Brexit negotiations [What Think Tanks are thinking]

Written by Marcin Grajewski, Formal negotiations on the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union under Article 50 TEU got under way on 19 June, as both sides agreed in principle how to organise the talks and underlined their mutual goodwill. The talks began nearly a year after the U.K. referendum to leave the EU … Continue reading

The Brexit negotiations: Issues for the first phase

Written by  Alessandro D’Alfonso, Eva-Maria Poptcheva, James McEldowney and Laura Tilindyte, Negotiations on the arrangements for the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union started on 19 June 2017. The European Commission is negotiating on behalf of the EU, on the basis of the European Council’s guidelines and the subsequent mandate from the Council. The … Continue reading

Control of the acquisition and possession of weapons [EU Legislation in Progress]

Written by Jana Valant (4th edition), In the aftermath of the Paris terrorist attacks, in November 2015 the European Commission presented a package of measures aiming to tighten control on the acquisition and possession of firearms in the European Union, improve traceability of legally held firearms and enhance cooperation between Member States, as well as … Continue reading

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The content of all documents (and articles) contained in this blog is the sole responsibility of the author and any opinions expressed therein do not necessarily represent the official position of the European Parliament. It is addressed to the Members and staff of the EP for their parliamentary work. Reproduction and translation for non-commercial purposes are authorised, provided the source is acknowledged and the European Parliament is given prior notice and sent a copy. Copyright © European Union, 2014. All rights reserved