In a move that surprised many observers, the President of Poland Andrzej Duda announced his intention on 24 July to veto the laws adopted by the Polish Parliament aimed at reforming the Polish court system. The President’s veto had been called for by EU leaders. Continue reading
The European Commission on 13 July sent a “letter of formal notice” to Hungary over that country’s new law on foreign-funded NGOs adopted just one month earlier. The EU Commissioner for Fundamental Rights, Dutch Socialist Frans Timmermans, has alleged that Hungary is in breach of EU fundamental rights law. Continue reading
Despite criticism from outside, the Hungarian Parliament has adopted a new law that imposes new requirements for Universities in Hungary – requirements that, apparently, George Soros’s “Central European University” (CEU) is currently not able or not willing to fulfil. Immediately it is rumoured that the new law is specifically targeting the CEU, and that it it is part of a larger design to crack down on “liberalism”… reason enough for the EU’s Deputy Sheriff Frans Timmermans to issue a lengthy press statement in which he not only expresses “concern over the situation in Hungary”, but (indirectly) even brandishes the threat of a “Rule-of-Law-Procedure” against Hungary to defend “our shared values”. Continue reading
Jean-Claude Juncker has announced that he will not seek a second five-year term as EU Commission President when his current mandate ends. Following the departure of Martin Schulz as European Parliament President last month, the announcement gives the EU an opportunity to reform, free of the arch-federalist pair. Continue reading
For quite a while now, representatives of the EU and its institutions have relentlessly expressed their “concern” over the political situation in Hungary and Poland, accusing the respective governments of undermining what is vaguely described as the “rule of law”.
Given these antecedents, it is astonishing to observe that the current situation in Romania does not seem to trigger any such concerns.
The European Citizens’ Initiative “Mum Dad & Kids”, which campaigns against the arbitrary re-definition of “marriages” and “families”, has, eight months after its commencement, already fulfilled one of the two criteria to make it successful, surpassing a national threshold in at least seven Member States of the EU. In total, the number of signatures so far collected is estimated at between 400.000 and 500.000, but could also be higher, given that many signatures collected on paper reach the organizers only with some delay. The initiative now looks set to easily meet its official goal of crossing the threshold of one million signatures by 3 April 2017, one year after its commencement.
Yet there seems a conflict to be going on behind the scenes between the organizers and the European Commission, Continue reading
Earlier this week, the European Commission hosted its 12th annual high-level meeting with religious leaders from across Europe. The group included Catholic, Protestant, Orthodox, Mormon, Jewish and Muslim faith leaders and the theme of this year’s discussion was: “Migration, integration and European values”. Continue reading