Foreign Policy Blogs

Europe

Healthy choices

Healthy choices

The European Commission has put forward a proposal that would allow patients to seek out medical assistance in other countries irrespective of the approval of their health care provider. Citing principles of free choice, free movement and comparative advantage, EU Health Commissioner, Androulla Vassiliou presented the plans in Brussels. Though the Financial Times predicts the […]

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The Sarko Show

The Sarko Show

Welcome, Mr. President, to one of the toughest jobs in global politics. You had a killer agenda planned, including the conclusion of an European pact on immigration and asylum, the creation of a functional Mediterranean Union (with the EU-Med Summit in two weeks’ time) and robust responses to the looming natural resource shortage. Already, you […]

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Untying the package?

Untying the package?

For the first time the incoming French EU Presidency has talked of unravelling the Lisbon Reform Treaty to accomodate Irish concerns. Speaking  in Brussels, French Secretary of State for European Affairs Jean-Pierre Jouyet said that the outcome of his President's visit to Ireland in July would clarify whether “there is a need to reopen or not to reopen […]

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Lisbon complicating EU-Russian relations

The Financial Times is reporting that progress toward regularized EU-Russian collaboration will be negatively impacted by the lack of progress on the Lisbon Treaty ratification. Russian officials want to see the ratification process move ahead, in part for the clarity it would bring with respect to foreign affairs: “"With the Lisbon treaty in force and a […]

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"Taking stock" in Brussels

"Taking stock" in Brussels

Only a week after the resounding Irish ‘No’, EU leaders faced the difficult task of formulating a response at a weekend summit that was slated to address the rather mundane issues of governing an almost unwieldy Union of 27. Instead, EU heads of state and government faced yet another “crisis,” likened by some to the […]

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EU gets tough on Iran

When US President George W. Bush made what will likely be his last visit to Europe for the EU-US Summit two weeks ago, Iran was one of the only points both sides could still sink their teeth into. While Europe and the US have had diametrically opposed methods of dealing with the country, with the […]

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They tried to make me go to Europe, I said NO, NO, NO

They tried to make me go to Europe, I said NO, NO, NO

Though not all votes are counted and official results are not expected until later this afternoon, Ireland's Europe Minister is already conceding defeat in his country's referendum on the EU Reform Treaty. Though the margin is narrow, it seems that the ‘No’ victory (at 52% vs. a predicted 48% ‘Yes’ vote) is clear. It is […]

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EU referendum: All eyes on Ireland

EU referendum: All eyes on Ireland

There is a nervous anticipation in the air in Brussels. Today is the day that might undo the fragile compromise negotiated by Angela Merkel during Germany's Presidency of the European Union. Eyes grew wider with anguish when the Irish Times reported earlier in the week that the ‘No’ camp had overtaken the pro-Lisbon Treaty faction in the […]

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The price of inequality

The price of inequality

Just as the demands for increased female leadership in the EU become more vociferous, a new study reveals that enormous income gaps in some of the Union's largest countries are hurting women's chances and having a harmful effect on the economy as a whole. Speaking to German daily, Die Welt, the EU Commissioner for Employment, […]

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Europe's (female) Commander in Chief

Europe's (female) Commander in Chief

Just as a woman bows out of the race for the most powerful political office in the world, calls for a female leadership role in the European Union are swelling. Launched by Danish Socialist MEP, Christel Schaldemose, the ‘Females in Front’ initiative is looking to fill one of the key posts in the 27-member Union […]

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France muscles in on Turkey

France muscles in on Turkey

On May 29th the French Assemblée Nationale took a vote that might have profound impact on whether Turkey joins the European Union in a few years, or not. Making good on what his predecessor Jacques Chirac had promised all along, President Sarkozy and his ruling UMP party introduced a constitutional amendment, which would put future […]

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Countdown

Countdown

It's June 1st and that leaves only a short twelve days for pro and con EU Treaty campaigners in Ireland. They have their work cut out for them, according to recent polls. The Los Angeles Times is reporting that “NO” campaigners are gaining ground, particularly among the conservative and the country's large farming population who see […]

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EU-US trade rhetoric

EU-US trade rhetoric

“Don't let yourself be fooled,” is EU Trade Commissioner Peter Mandelson's message to American voters. In an interview for BBC's Hardtalk, which was excerpted to the Financial Times, Mandelson argues that promising disengagement from certain parts of the global trading system in order to win votes is dangerous. Implicitly critiquing views expressed by Democratic Presidential […]

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Presidential matters

Presidential matters

Angela Merkel, German Chancellor, received Europe's most prestigious honor on May 1: the international Charlemagne Prize. Previous winners include US President Bill Clinton, former EU Commission President Jacques Delors, Luxembourg's Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker and Europe's “Mr. Foreign Policy,” Javier Solana. None other than French President Nicolas Sarkozy delivered the laudatory address – an interesting […]

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Engaging the US

Engaging the US

Wolfgang Ischinger, the designated head of the Munich Security Conference, former German Ambassador to the US currently serving as his country's top diplomat in the UK, has published an article in the Financial Times arguing that now – not after the US elections – is the time to forge stronger transatlantic ties. A rare opportunity […]

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