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Greens/EFA Roundup

Debriefing of the Strasbourg plenary week 15-19 September 2014

Table of contents

  • Access to life-saving medicines in Europe
  • EU-Ukraine Association Agreement
  • UN climate talks and the EU's role
  • European Youth Initiative
  • Sakharov Prize
  • EU response to the Ebola outbreak
  • Addressing the crises in the Middle East

Access to life-saving medicines in Europe

Plenary debate – Tuesday 16 September 2014 The European Parliament debated Tuesday the issue of life-saving medicines and the excessively high pricing in certain member states. The astronomical prices of some life-saving medicines means sufferers are unable to afford their treatment. The Greens strongly condemn that and even more so the fact that the European Commission is refusing to address the issue, notably by tackling the issue of monopolies and abuse of market position. Further information:
Axel Singhofen, Advisor on Health and Environment Policy


EU-Ukraine Association Agreement

Plenary debate and vote Tues. 16 September 2014 The European Parliament endorsed the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement Tuesday, with an overwhelming majority. This was the first time in the history of the European institutions that a bilateral agreement was ratified simultaneously by the two parliaments concerned. The Greens welcomed the ratification of the Association Agreement but expressed concern with a new plan to delay the implementation of part of EU's free trade agreement with Ukraine. Compromising on the trade agreement is a political disgrace. It is totally wrong that no conditions were included to address the ongoing invasion of Ukraine, which is being supported by Russia. Green amendments were all adopted. Unfortunately the one on energy dependence on Russia and other authoritarian regimes was only partly adopted. The part calling for ambitious and binding targets for energy efficiency and renewable energy was rejected. Energy is a key element of our relations with Russia but the EP seems to neglect the importance to adopt a credible energy strategy to reduce fossil addiction and free the EU foreign policy from energy constraints. Further information:
Paolo Bergamaschi, Advisor on Foreign Affairs
paolo.bergamaschi@europarl.europa.eu   _______________________________________________________

UN climate talks and the EU's role

Tues. 16 September – EP plenary debate MEPs debated Tuesday the situation and the EU's position ahead of crucial high-level talks in New York, aimed at reinvigorating the UN climate talks. With the clock ticking towards the key climate summit in Paris next year, the EU needs to turn its faltering climate policy around. Agreeing 3 ambitious and binding 2030 targets on greenhouse gas emissions, energy efficiency and renewable energy are crucial to this end. Further information:
Terhi Lehtonen, Advisor on Environmental Issues

Delphine Chalençon, Climate campaigner

European Youth Initiative

European Commission statement – Wednesday 17 September 2014 The Greens called for more action in favour of young people in Europe as the European Commission made a statement Wednesday on the European Youth Initiative, a programme launched in 2013 to tackle youth unemployment. Despite all the talk and tools put in place (youth guarantee, initiative on youth unemployment), results still remain to be seen. Youth unemployment is on the rise, 30% of young people aged 15-27-years-old are at risk of social exclusion and poverty and a growing number, despite being highly educated, can’t even access the job market. The Greens call on the new Commission and especially on Members States to start delivering action instead of nice words and tackle youth unemployment head on. Further information:
Berta Halmos, Advisor on Employment and Social Affairs

Sakharov Prize - Leyla Yunus nominated by Greens/EFA group

Thursday 18 September Leyla Yunus, an Azerbaijani human rights activist who is currently in jail on spurious charges, has been nominated by the Greens/EFA group for the 2014 Sakharov Prize for freedom of thought. Leyla Yunus' tireless human rights work in Azerbaijan over a long period is the essence of that which the Sakharov Prize aims to recognise. The Greens nominated Leyla Yunus to draw attention to her outstanding work but also to the deteriorating human rights situation in Azerbaijan. Further information:
Raphaël Fišera - Advisor on Human Rights

EU response to the Ebola outbreak

Debate Wednesday 17 September 2014 – vote Thursday 18 September 2014 The European Parliament adopted Thursday, with an overwhelming majority, a resolution on the EU response to the Ebola outbreak. The text calls for urgent, immediate and coordinated action by the international community. The international community should have reacted earlier, when the outbreak began six months ago. Albeit much too late, funds for research into vaccines have finally been granted. However, money is not enough. The Greens believe that there is a crying need for medical infrastructure and personnel. _______________________________________________________

 Addressing the crises in the Middle East

EP plenary debates; votes Thursday 18 September MEPs debated and adopted resolutions on the various crises in the Middle East. The Greens have pushed for the EU to address the humanitarian crises in Gaza and Syria. The EU must engage proactively for a lasting and peaceful solution. How to respond to the challenge posed by Islamic State is a complicated issue and the EU must recognise this. Greens/EFA motions for resolution on: Texts adopted on ________________________________________


 Greens/EFA motions for resolution on _______________________________________________________ Want to be kept informed?

Next issue of Greens/EFA Plenary Round-up: 24 October 2014

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