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Another luxury EU “interactive information centre”, now in Paris: €6M a year in rent and a €12M renovation bill

  • By: Benjamin de Wolf
  • The EU plans to pay €6 million a year in rent on their new “House of Europe” building in central Paris and spend almost €12 million doing the place up. According to French MEP Elisabeth Morin-Chartier “It will be a communication space for all citizens because [Parliament President Antonio] Tajani’s goal is to bring Europeans closer to the EU”, which is planned to open in 2020.
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    Italy received 85.000 migrants in first half of 2017, compared to 71.000 in 2016. EU still reluctant to solve crisis

  • By: Vincent van den Born
  • The number of migrants crossing the Mediterranean is up again. Italy now has to cope with 85.000 people landing on its shores in the first six months of 2017, up from 71.000 in the entire year 2016. In response, the European Commission has published an action plan, with the Commission’s First Vice President, Frans Timmermans, feeling the need to “lower expectations” by pointing out that the Commission is not: “coming out with a silver bullet, that there’s one measure that’s going to solve all this. But it would already make a world of difference if member states would just do what they agreed before.”
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    Now sober, EU-chief Juncker sort of apologises for calling EP “ridiculous”

  • By: Benjamin de Wolf
  • Today, a sobering two days later, Juncker’s Spokesman, Alexander Winterstein, stated that Juncker is still a friend of the European Parliament, which he ought to be evident  due to the fact that he attended over sixty plenary sessions, but “sometimes friends tell each other truths that are sometimes not easy to hear.” He then added that Juncker told the European Parliament President Antonio Tajani that he “regretted his choice of words.”
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    Lol. Juncker to European Parliament: “You are all ridiculous! I will never join such a meeting again”

  • By: Benjamin de Wolf
  • “If Merkel or Macron were here, we would’ve had a full house,” Juncker told the members angrily. “The parliament should respect smaller member states in an equal manner.” He then said about Muscat that: “he made an excellent work,” and he closed by seemingly contradicting himself by stating “he will never again join such a meeting ever again.”
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    Guy Verhofstadt: ‘If you give us an EU army, we’ll give you free WiFi and Ipads’

  • By: Timon Dias
  • We’ll there’s some federal populism for you. Of course, Verhofstadt, leader of the European Parliament’s (EP) ALDE fraction and the EP’s chief Brexit negotiator, is safely hiding behind the fact that the trade-off is proposed by Steffen Dobbert. But Verhofstadt has been pushing for an EU army for years, and doesn’t skip an opportunity to promote his federal fighting force, so this new and improved EU-army-for-free-stuff angle fits him like a glove.
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    Brussels fines Google with a whopping €2.4 billion

  • By: Benjamin de Wolf
  • The European Commission fined Google for “abuse of power”, and with €2.4 billion it is the largest fine the EU has ever handed out for such a misdemeanour. The fine followed an investigation that took seven years. Back then, Google received complaints about abusing its dominance in searches, giving preference to its own advertisements. There were three attempts to settle the case, but in 2014, Margrethe Vestager, the EU’s competition commissioner, decided to prosecute.
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    Poised next Czech PM: “We don’t want more Muslims than Czechs, and we don’t want the Euro”

  • By: Vincent van den Born
  • “The biggest added value of the European Union is the national identity of each country. A strong Europe thanks to strong states – that’s logical, no? We have to fight for what our ancestors built here. If there will be more Muslims than Belgians in Brussels, that’s their problem. I don’t want that here. They won’t be telling us who should live here.”
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    The EU pours billions of euros into Erdogan’s Turkey, results remain absent

  • By: Benjamin de Wolf
  • Turkey has received almost €1 billion from the EU meant for the rule of law and democracy, and that’s not the whole picture; between 2007 and this year, Turkey was allocated roughly €4.8 billion, which is more than 40 percent of the EU’s Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance fund’s (IPA) allocations. Of that, €2.68 billion was committed and €2.19 billion paid out. A further €1.65 billion has been allocated since 2014 but has not yet been paid out.
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    And so it begins: the Brexit negotiations

  • By: Benjamin de Wolf
  • At 11:00 BST today, day one of the Brexit negotiations will lift off at the European Commission buildings in Brussels. Subjects for the negotiations include the status of expats, the UK’s “divorce bill” and the Northern Ireland border. Brexit Secretary David Davis will call for “a deal like no other in history,” and sources say the talks will follow the EU’s preferred pattern of exit negotiations first, with the future relations between the two sides – including the free trade deal the UK is seeking – at a later date.
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    Dutch journalist sues EU VP Frans Timmermans and NGO’s for wrongful deaths, human trafficking and incitement

  • By: Vincent van den Born
  • European Commissioner Frans Timmermans and NGO Doctors without Borders have now been sewed for wrongful death, incitement and human trafficking (Article 197a). The Dutch police were also asked to investigate NGO ships, like those of the German organisation Sea Watch, that fly the Dutch flag.

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