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Transparency/Lobbying

The Constitutional Affairs Committee of the European Parliament has voted for the first time for binding lobby transparency for MEPs. MEPs who co-author EU laws will need to publish any meetings they have had with interest representatives that fall under the scope of the EU Transparency Register. The Greens/EFA group have long been calling for much stronger rules around lobbying in the European Parliament, in order to increase the transparency and accountability of decision making.

Debate with Romanian President Klaus Iohannis

Quote from Ska Keller

"At a time when our common values are being trampled upon, every voice that defends civil rights, democracy and the rule of law counts - regardless of party politics," Ska Keller says.


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kai pilger

A major step for the protection of all workers

Social rights

The European Parliament's Employment and Social Affairs Committee adopted its report on the directive proposed by the European Commission in December 2017 to make working conditions more transparent and predictable across the EU.


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Rolf van Melis | CC

Making polluters responsible for climate protection

CO2 standards for trucks

The vast majority of the Environment Committee's MEPs have just asserted themselves against the Conservatives and voted in favour of strict CO2 standards for trucks and now have a solid position for negotiations with the Council and the European Commission, in "trilogue", on a regulation for "CO2 emission standards for new heavy goods vehicles".


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1 year since Daphne Caruana Galizia was murdered

"Daphne Caruana Galizia paid the ultimate price for her fearless reporting into corruption and organised crime in Malta. The European Parliament must create a Daphne Caruana Galizia Prize for investigative journalists. Those who make public what governments want to sweep under the rug deserve applause, recognition and protection"


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New Greens/EFA report shows urgent need for EU to close loopholes for tax evasion

Tax

A new report by the Greens/EFA group in the European Parliament shows that, despite progress in recent years on closing down opportunities for tax evasion, there are significant loopholes for citizens and multinationals to evade paying taxes where they are based.


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david pisnoy

One-third of chemicals on the market breach EU safety rules

Chemicals

For years, chemical companies in the European Union have marketed hundreds of harmful chemicals that without properly checking if they are toxic, eco-toxic or have the potential to cause cancer, impair fertility and inhibit the development of unborn children.


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© Nancy Louie

Diesel is finally considered carcinogenic for workers

Occupational health

he European Parliament has forced governments to recognise the carcinogenic nature of diesel engine emissions. This is an undeniable victory for the health of workers across Europe. Every year in the EU, 3 million workers are exposed to diesel pollution through the course of their professional activities.


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(C) Lars Aronsson

New report show Golden Visa schemes pose corruption and security risk to Europe

Quote from Benedek Jávor MEP

A new report looking into the effect of selling EU residency and citizenship exposes the EU to corruption and security risks. The report by Transparency International EU and Global Witness highlights the vulnerabilities of so-called 'Golden Visa' schemes in countries such as Malta, Cyprus and Portugal.


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© hroe

Vote to ban straws and other plastic products a victory for the environment

Plastics

Today, the Environment Committee of the European Parliament voted on a report that bolsters the European Commission's proposals on reducing plastic pollution and proposes bans on a wide range of environmentally harmful products.


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Ruben de Rijcke (CC BY-SA 3.0)

EU environment ministers ignore IPCC report

CO2 Regulation and COP24

Under pressure from the automobile industry and the German government in particular, EU environment ministers are sabotaging our chances to save the climate. They agreed on weak targets for CO2 emissions from cars and light commercial vehicles and demanded only a marginal improvement to the EU Commission's proposal.


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CC BY UNHCR

NGO rescuers nominated for Sakharov Prize

Refugees

A collection of NGOs who have been responsible for leading the rescue effort of refugees at sea are in the pre-selection phase for the European Parliament's Sakharov Prize. MEPs from the Foreign Affairs and Development Committees have just voted for the Greens/EFA group candidates to be included in the shortlist for the Sakharov prize.


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Quote from Ska Keller on the Catalan prisoners

Catalonia

"We were lucky to meet some of the people who are imprisoned here today. I am happy to see that they are in good spirits, they are optimistic. This whole idea that they should be put on trial for rebellion and sedition does not hold any ground. I would call on the General prosecutor to drop at least those charges. It will be a trial, they will defend themselves but why spend so much time in prison before there is even a trial?"


en

Independent investigation into abhorrent murder urgently needed

Bulgaria/Viktoria Marinova

Viktoria Marinova was brutally murdered in the Bulgarian city of Ruse. She had recently been reporting on corruption in EU funds involving top officials and major companies in Bulgaria. The Greens/EFA group demand an immediate and independent investigation into Marinova's death.


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©pritchard-barrett

The time to act is now

Climate change and IPCC report

We can achieve the Paris climate target of 1.5c global warming if governments act now, according to the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in its upcoming special report on global warming.


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MEPs call for the freedom of their former Catalan colleagues

Press release from EFA MEPs J-M Terricabras and Jordi Solé

Around 40 MEPs in Strasbourg symbolically wore yellow t-shirts in the European Parliament plenary on Wednesday 3 October. The action was designed to highlight the plight of their former colleagues as MEPs in the Greens / EFA Group, Raül Romeva and Oriol Junqueras, and to call for their relea...


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New powers urgently needed to tackle money laundering in EU

Money laundering

The European Parliament will debate, on an initiative of the Greens/EFA group, the risks of money laundering in the EU banking sector following on from major multi-billion euro scandals in large European banks. The ongoing case of Danske Bank in Denmark and Estonia, as well recent cases with ING in the Netherlands, Pilatus Bank in Malta and ABVL Bank in Latvia, show that the current enforcement of EU anti-money laundering rules are insufficient.


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European Parliament shows some ambition on CO2 reductions

CO2 emissions

The majority of MEPs have just voted to reduce CO2 emissions from new cars by 40% by 2030. The European Parliament's position for the upcoming negotiations with the European Commission and Council and lags behind the position of the Environment Committee, which had called for a 45% reduction, and goes beyond the European Commission's proposal of just 30%.


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European Institutions must defend the rights of Romanian citizens

Romania

The European Parliament, at the initiative of the Greens/EFA group, will debate with the Prime Minister of Romania, the state of corruption and the rule of law in Romania after the police attacked peaceful protestors this summer.


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Brexit debate must not descend into theatre

Quote from Philippe Lamberts

On the state of the Brexit negotiations ahead of the next EU Council Summit (October 18-19), as debated this morning in the European Parliament Plenary, President of the Greens/EFA group in the European Parliament, Philippe Lamberts, comments.


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More ambitious reduction targets will lead to EU-wide job creation

Car industry/CO2 emissions

"Even though this is clearly a politically steered report from the Commission, designed to influence votes in the Parliament and Council, it still finds that employment numbers in the entire EU will increase with more ambitious reduction targets," says Bas Eickhout, energy policy spokesperson for the Greens/EFA Group in the European Parliament.


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© Stefano Corso

Austria press freedom

Quotes from Ska Keller and Judith Sargentini

On the news that the Austrian minister of the interior Herbert Kickl issued a communication to police and other officials on which media outlets to engage with based on how friendly they are to the government, President of the Greens/EFA group in the European Parliament Ska Keller comments.


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Court ruling upholds secrecy around MEPs' expenses

Quote from Heidi Hautala

On the news that the European Court of Justice has upheld the European Parliament's refusal to handover documents related to MEP's travel and office expenses to a consortium of 28 investigative journalists, Heidi Hautala, Greens/EFA Vice-President comments.


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Justice

Commission refers Poland to ECJ over independence of Supreme Court

Quote from Ska Keller and Philippe Lamberts

Greens/EFA co-presidents comment on the news that the European Commission has referred Poland to the European Court of Justice over the independence of the Polish Supreme Court


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© Patrick Laverdant

Allegations of conflict of interest around Czech PM Andrej Babiš

Quote from Philippe Lamberts

Today, Transparency International Czech Republic has submitted a complaint to the European Commission surrounding the Czech Prime Minister, Andrej Babiš's potential conflicts of interest around his personal business dealings. The European Commission must investigate Andrej Babiš's business dealings as soon as possible to ensure that they do not breach EU conflict of interest rules.


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(CC BY-SA 2.0) Dave Dugdale

European Commission rule Luxembourg did not give selective tax treatment to McDonald's

Tax avoidance

The European Commission has today ruled that the non-taxation of certain McDonald's profits in Luxembourg did not constitute illegal State Aid, as it is in line with national tax laws.


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Ruben de Rijcke (CC BY-SA 3.0)

Car companies must be held to account over possible collusion

Emissions cheating

The European Commission has just announced that it will open a formal investigation into whether BMW, Daimler and VW colluded to breach EU anti-trust rules around the roll-out of clean emissions technology.


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European Free Alliance delegation in Lebanon

Press release from EFA MEPs visiting Lebanon

EFA Members of the European Parliament (MEPs), Josep-Maria Terricabras (ERC), Jill Evans (Plaid Cymru) and Jordi Solé (ERC) are in Lebanon leading a delegation aiming to find out more about the reality of the country, where one in every four inhabitants is a refugee. Since the beginning of...


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© Don Bayley

Double standards in the EU are unacceptable

Single Market/Product quality

The European Parliament has called for an end to the practice of companies producing different quality products for different parts of Europe without the consumer being clearly informed of such a difference.


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Time to do away with recycling toxic waste

Recycling

"Dirty recycling must be stopped and toxic substances should be put on a black list," says Davor Škrlec, member of the Greens/EFA group.


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© Jaap Hart

EFA President welcomes EP vote on Hungary

Press release by EFA MEP J-M Terricabras (Catalonia)

Esquerra Republicana de Catalunya MEP and President of the EFA Group in the European Parliament, Josep-Maria Terricabras, has strongly welcomed the European Parliament's decision to recommend to the Member States to apply article 7 of the Treaty on European Union, because it believes that there ...


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EU copyright reform needs more work

Press release from EFA MEPs Ian Hudghton & Alyn Smith (Scotland)

The European parliament today, by 438 votes to 226 against with 39 abstentions, voted to approve the negotiating mandate for the next stage of complex negotiations over the reform of Copyright in the digital Single Market.  MEPs Ian Hudghton and Alyn Smith, supported a workable compromise betwe...


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European Parliament votes to defend the rule of law in Hungary in historic vote

Hungary

In an unprecedented move, Members of the European Parliament have voted in favour of starting procedures against the Hungarian government for breaching European values on the rule of law. The resolution by Greens/EFA rapporteur Judith Sargentini was supported by over two-thirds of MEPS.


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© alengo

Parliament approves upload filter with cosmetic changes

Copyright reform

The majority of MEPs are satisfied with cosmetic changes and have ignored the loud protests from across science and civil society. Upload filters endanger a free internet.


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Sasha Popovic (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

#SOTEU – Catalonia – 'Europe needs to be part of the solution'

Press release from EFA MEP Jordi Solé (Catalonia)

EFA MEP Jordi Solé (Catalonia) has invited European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker to visit the nine political prisoners currently being held in Catalan jails, including two former MEPs. Solé was speaking in the keynote debate on the State of the Union in the European Parl...


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© Alexander Briel

We have power when we stand together

State of the European Union

If Europe loses its democracy it will lose itself. Europe has promised democracy, the rule of law and civil liberties to all its citizens. It is dangerous for Europe that political leaders such as Viktor Orbán in Hungary are now increasingly undermining this promise


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Victory for language equality in the European Parliament

Press release from EFA MEP Jill Evans (Wales)

The European Parliament has overwhelmingly endorsed a report by Plaid Cymru MEP Jill Evans which calls for action at the EU level to bridge the digital language divide. The report looks at the use of languages in digital technology and makes a number of recommendations for action by the European ...


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Vote on rule of law in Hungary

Quote from Ska Keller

The vote on Hungary is a decisive moment for every political group and each individual Member of Parliament. We must not leave the playing field open to right-wing nationalists


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Picture credit Pavel Korr - Istock

European Parliament to call for a ban on killer robots

Killer Robots

"Autonomous weapons systems must be banned internationally, the power to decide over life and death should never be taken out of human hands and given to machines," says Bodil Valero MEP, security policy spokesperson for the Greens/EFA Group in the European Parliament.


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©andrea laurita

We need a social Union

Debate on the Future of the European Union with Greek Prime Minister

In Greece, Europe broke one of its fundamental promises, to bring prosperity to its citizens. Instead it brought poverty. Europe didn’t find a solution based on solidarity and solidity. Our lesson from this needs to be that we finally create a social union. So far we have only vague declarations on how nice social policies would be, but that’s not enough


en | fr

Ambitious targets for clean cars

CO2 Regulation

Members of the European Parliament demand clear and ambitious targets for cleaner cars, according to the Environment Committee which has just voted on the European Commission's proposal for European CO2 regulation for cars and light commercial vehicles.


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Czech PM Andrej Babiš and potential conflict of interest

Quote from Philippe Lamberts

On the news that Transparency International Czech Republic has complained to the European Commission about potential conflict of interest surrounding Czech PM Andrej Babiš and his personal business dealings, Philippe Lamberts President of the Greens/EFA group in the European Parliament comments.


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European Elections - Manfred Weber to run for Commission President

Quote from Ska Keller

On the news that Manfred Weber will run for President of the European Commission, Ska Keller, President of the Greens/EFA group in the European Parliament comments.


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Scotland legislates to include EU nationals post-Brexit

Press release from EFA MEP Alyn Smith (Scotland)

Scotland's government has announced that it will bring forward legislation to ensure that all EU nationals resident in Scotland maintain their Scottish voting rights in the event that Brexit takes place. The measure, announced as part of the Programme for Government, builds on the existing po...


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Romania: Police violence against peaceful protestors

Quote from Greens/EFA Co-Presidents Ska Keller and Philippe Lamberts

Greens/EFA Co-Presidents Ska Keller and Philippe Lamberts comment regarding the recent events in Romania.


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CC Chafer Machinery

A victory for food safety and the environment: ECJ ruling on new GMOs

GMOs

Today, the European Court of Justice ruled that organisms obtained by mutagenesis, otherwise known as "new breeding techniques" by the biotech industry, are in fact Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs), and are subject to the 2001 EU GMO Directive and all its obligations. Despite heavy lobbying by the industry looking for ways to circumvent the GMO Directive, the Court's ruling is a victory for European food safety and the environment.


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PD

An agreement that perpetuates mistakes

EU-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement (JEFTA)

Tomorrow (17/07/2018), the EU and Japan will sign the biggest bilateral trade deal in history, covering almost one third of global GDP with implications for over 600 million people. Once ratified, JEFTA will be incredibly difficult to amend.


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Quote from Benedek Javor MEP

ECJ ruling on Hinkley Point

On Thursday (12 July) we expect the European Court of Justice to rule on lawsuits against the financing of the construction of the new Hinkley Point nuclear power plant in the UK.


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OG Picture: Gage Skidmore (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Strengthen Europe as a civil power

NATO summit

"NATO cannot be about satisfying Donald Trump. We can only rely on the American President to a very limited extent. The European Union must make its own contribution to security and stability," said Reinhard Bütikofer MEP.


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Black silhouettes lobby business © nico_blue

MEPs' outside activities show it's time to overhaul Parliament's ethics rules

Side jobs

A report by Transparency International EU on the outside activities of MEPs shows that up to 104 MEPs have earned more than €100,000 each over the last four years on top of their salaries as full-time MEPs.


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© Benoit Beauregard

Free internet still possible as European Parliament votes for more scrutiny over copyright bill

Copyright reform

Today, the European Parliament decided by to have greater scrutiny over a law that severely threatens how people participate and express themselves online. The European Commission's proposed directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market would see the introduction of a link tax and automatic upload filters and will likely stop people from posting photos, videos and sharing links to news articles as they do today.


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