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Archives for EU

Working together with Russia

Andrew Wilson of the European Council on Foreign Relations argues that instead of rushing to embrace Dmitry Medvedev – Russia’s likely new president after the 2 March elections – European Union leaders should agree on a joint Russia strategy and set a series of tests for Putin’s successor. “A repeat of the experience of 2000,… » read more

Posted by Stanley Crossick

A taste of things to come

President Nicolas Sarkozy’s visit to the French Agricultural Show in Paris on 23 February was far more eventful than expected. This is not the place to compete with YouTube’s video clip of his extraordinary conversation with a visitor who refused to shake his hand. On the WTO trade negotiations, the French President brought up CAP… » read more

Posted by Stanley Crossick

The number of supporters of the UK ‘I Want a Referendum’ campaign reached 40 000 this morning according to its website, that is to say 0.09% of the electorate. ‘I Want a Referendum’ is organising a mass lobby of Parliament tomorrow. “This is your chance to come to Westminster and tell your MP that you… » read more

Posted by Stanley Crossick

The new EU Diplomatic Service

An interesting Konrad Adenauer Stiftung debate on Wednesday, led by Elmar Brok, MEP, prompts me to offer some reflections on the planned new European External Action Service and the EU High Representative for Foreign & Security Policy. (ugh! I will go on referring to them as EU Diplomatic Service and Foreign Policy Chief). The earlier… » read more

Posted by Stanley Crossick

Comments are specially invited, even if only ‘yes’ or ‘no’ Alain Lamasourre (in his comment of) came up with a great idea for the appointment of the President of the European Council, which is expected to be decided during the French Presidency (July to December 2008). In a nutshell: Candidates are invited to declare themselves… » read more

Posted by Stanley Crossick

Eight months after becoming prime minister, Gordon Brown has deigned to visit the Commission in Brussels. Whatever his views of Brussels, the Commission, the European Union or indeed of non-Anglophone foreigners, this is not the way to win friends and influence people. But then, there has up to now been no indication that he wants… » read more

Posted by Stanley Crossick

Recognition of Kosovo’s independence is an unfortunate solution, but there is currently no better a solution. It is easy to say that EU foreign policy has failed because we could not unanimously agree this recognition. But is it to be expected that Spain and Cyprus could join in? Or some of the central European states?… » read more

Posted by Stanley Crossick

EU gets its timing wrong

The process to appoint the triumvirate of European Council President, Commission President and Foreign Policy Chief/Commission Vice-President is complicated enough with timing problems. Assuming that the Lisbon Treaty will be ratified and come into force on 1 January 2009, the European Council President and the Foreign Policy Chief will need to be agreed this year… » read more

Posted by Stanley Crossick

German parliamentary ratification of the Lisbon Treaty is assured in good time, but nevertheless Germany may prevent the new treaty coming into force on 1 January 2008. A contradiction? No. According to the German daily newspaper Die Welt, Peter Gauweiler of the CSU and Left Party politicians are considering challenging the ratification before the country’s… » read more

Posted by Stanley Crossick

The impact of the Lisbon Treaty on the appointment of the 2009-2014 European Commission may not be widely realised. The President will be proposed by the European Council, after consultation and acting by a qualified majority, taking into account the elections to the European Parliament. He/she has to be appointed by an absolute majority of… » read more

Posted by Stanley Crossick