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Questions tagged [european-union]

For questions on the European Union, a union of currently twenty-eight European countries, and how it relates to national governments and other international organs.

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Theresa May described that the EU wants a backstop to the backstop - what does this mean?

In her statement to Parliament, Theresa May stated that the EU wanted a backstop to the backstop. If I understand correctly, the backstop is a fallback position for customs and regulatory ...
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Are there some studies which measure the level of politicization of courts in a trans-Atlantic perspective?

It's easy enough to find a Europe-only comparative perspective on the politicization of the judiciary, e.g. Werkmann (2017): The authors measured the level of politicization in each country ...
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Does the EU mandate certain requirements for citizenship of member states?

Does the EU mandate certain requirements for citizenship of member states? For example, criminal background checks, multiple nationalities. The origin of my question is that EU Citizenship, ...
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What issue does the EU take with the UK's Chequers proposal?

It's said that the UK's Chequers proposal is "dead in the water". Different questions here have dealt with UK politicians supporting or opposing the proposal, but I'm interested in the EU's ...
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Why did Germany veto an expanded customs union between the EU and Turkey?

From Are relations between Turkey and Germany getting back to normal? Mr Erdogan will arrive in Germany with a long wish-list. He would like to see Germany lift its veto on an expanded customs ...
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What's the point in holding a second Brexit referendum?

Closely related to: What would be the subject of a second Brexit Referendum? Currently, there is discussion about a possible second referendum fueled by Labour, and there seems to be the publicly ...
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29 views

How did Rolando Paksas improperly meddle in a privatisation deal?

Rolando Paksas was the first European president to be impeached. He was also the third president of Lithuania after it seceded from the Warsaw pact. According to wikipedia: During his term, ...
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1answer
166 views

Who can fire the EU presidents?

There are three separate presidents of the EU . They are all appointed in different ways. But for each one, what is the mechanism for firing them before their term is up, and who can do it? They are: ...
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1answer
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Are there some surveys for the motivation of Syrian asylum seekers preference for Germany (once they reach Europe)?

For a bit of background: In 2015 and 2016, Europe became a destination of choice for an estimated 650,000 Syrians. However, this represents only about 5% of all Syrians displaced by the conflict ...
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138 views

Examples of European political parties/movements that put emphasis on science and technology and why so few?

The US Transhumanist party is small party that put emphasis on science and technology for fulfilling the aspirations of humanity. Indeed - there are very, very few limits in science. E.g. inertial ...
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143 views

Is there anything uniquely difficult about repealing Treaty law?

The proposed “Chequers Agreement” if passed would involve a new treaty committing the UK to ongoing regulatory alignment for goods. Some Leavers view this with suspicion because they view this kind ...
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329 views

How can the Northern Ireland backstop take effect if there is “no deal”?

The Northern Ireland “backstop” is the fall-back position currently being negotiated as part of the UK/EU Withdrawal Agreement with regard to treatment of the UK/Eire border should the UK exit without ...
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Can an individual member-state citizen be criminalised for not following EU law?

Can an individual member-state citizen be criminalised for not following EU law, or is there a limitation to EU law that means it is not applicable to individuals? Can the EU be said to be able to ...
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119 views

By what process do EU directives become UK national law?

By what process do EU directives become national law? Do they get encoded via the normal primary legislation process of a raising a Bill, debating it and then passing an Act?
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138 views

Are member states compelled by law to implement EU directives and regulations?

Are European Union member states compelled by law to implement EU directives and regulations, or can they choose not to implement them for any reason?
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129 views

Does the UK Government or Prime Minister have a vote in removing EU Commissioners?

Does either the UK Government or Prime Minister have any kind of vote or power in order to remove a particular EU Commissioner?
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1answer
110 views

Veto power in the EU

I understand that member states have a veto power over some (a minority of?) issues in the Council of Ministers (aka Council of the European Union). But does the European Council [sic] (i.e. heads of ...
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92 views

Where can I find the vote distribution of an EU directive?

Recently the EU Parliament voted on the “Copyright Directive”. I would like to know exactly which parties/individuals voted for and against this directive. I have been looking for this information ...
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1answer
83 views

What is the origin of law in the European Union?

Is the European Commission the origin of law in the European Union? Does this body have the sole right to propose new legislation in the EU?
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148 views

Could Italy's need to finance its public debt be a menace for the EU?

In the following article Italy’s populists turn to Trump and China it appears that Italian government is now seeking new alliances outside Europe to finance its debt, given that the ECB is coming to ...
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77 views

Who decides how EU structural funds are distributed?

The EU distributes developmental money via structural funds. How is structural fund allocation decided?
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1answer
161 views

Could a post-no-deal-Brexit UK urgently join EFTA and access the ESM that way?

EFTA is a free-trade organisation of Iceland, Norway, Switzerland, and Liechtenstein. Three of those are members of the EEA, Switzerland has bilateral agreements with the EU, such that all ...
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1answer
261 views

Does this European Citizen's Initiative have any chance of success?

I have recently been made aware of this petition to make EU citizenship permanent (prompted by Brexit): Noting the ECJ’s view of Union citizenship as a ‘fundamental status’ of nationals of Member ...
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212 views

When and how were the current US and EU tariffs on cars decided?

Trump said in a recent speech in West Virginia that he didn't like the "deal" the US has with the EU on cars. But as far as I know, there's no (separate) US-EU trade agreement on this, except ...
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278 views

Has there been any EU reaction to Trump's threat to put a 25% tariff on all EU cars?

The threat of (more) US tariffs on EU cars has been making the news again today: President Donald Trump said Tuesday night that the U.S. would slap a 25 percent tariff on cars coming from the ...
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65 views

What's the German or EU view on the definition of currency manipulation?

The US has a statutory definition of currency manipulation; while some US economists don't quite agree with the legal definition, nevertheless the topic is fairly widely discussed in the US in ...
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74 views

Are there precedents for the EU fining the UK for undervalued Chinese imports?

With all the Brexit talks, this has become a barely noticed case, but it might be relevant for future border relations between UK and EU: Britain faces a potential €2 billion bill from Brussels ...
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1answer
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“The Treaties” in article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty

Paragraph 3 of article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty states the following (emphasis is mine): The Treaties shall cease to apply to the State in question from the date of entry into force of the ...
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1answer
112 views

Did (other) officials from EU countries condemn Trump's tariffs on Turkey?

Assuming this is not fake news: Germany's minister for economic affairs and energy on Sunday lashed out U.S. President Donald Trump over his trade row with Turkey, while accusing him of dictating ...
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133 views

Can a EU country refuse to allow a car to circulate with plates from another EU country?

A spat between Sweden and Romania; a car with an insulting plates (when read in Romanian) caused the Swedish embassy to release this rather ambiguous statement: The Embassy of Sweden in Romania ...
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111 views

How common are sanctions against EU/NATO countries for the release of indicted US civilians?

We see that USA has put sanctions on Turkey for not releasing one of its (civilian) citizens. Has this type of thing, (requests made by the USA to have its citizens released from custody), ever ...
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Does EU freedom of speech allow a license plate that taunts a political party?

A few weeks ago a Romanian bought a personalized number plate from Sweden that seemed perfectly fine for Swedish Transport Agency is usually very vigilant when approving such plates. However, this ...
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1answer
311 views

Is the UK asking for increased influence over the EU post-Brexit?

Recently I heard a BBC correspondent speaking on Radio 4 about why the UK is finding it so hard to get what it wants from the Brexit negotiations. The correspondent said that EU politicians had told ...
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2answers
191 views

Any backlash against Ukrainians working in Poland? What's the Polish public opinion on Ukrainian guest workers?

According to Eurostat, in 2016 the vast majority of new work permits for non-EU citizens were issued by Poland for Ukrainians, nearly half a million such permits. Bloomberg has a background article ...
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1answer
128 views

How many “Blue Cards” have EU countries issued?

The "Blue Card" is EU-level scheme allowing high-skilled non-EU citizens to work and live in any country within the European Union, excluding Denmark, Ireland and the United Kingdom, According to ...
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Are there EU countries that offer a path to citizenship for non-EU foreign workers?

In the US there exist "dual intent" visas, e.g. H-1B, which while being a temporary work permit, nevertheless can lead to a permanent residence rights ("green card", usually sponsored by the employer ...
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1answer
56 views

Are there statistics on the origin and length of stay of non-EU foreign workers in the EU?

According to Wikipedia In 2016, around 7.14% (15.885.300 people) of total EU employment were not citizens, 3.61% (8.143.800) were from another EU Member State, 3.53% (7.741.500) were from a non-EU ...
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1answer
192 views

“Everything But Arms” and migrants

A common trope in Europe is that the European Union, by means of exploitation and stiff tariffs, keeps the African economy down, thereby forcing economic migrants to leave home for Europe. However, ...
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Has there been a (sustained) downward trend in the amount of EU Commission's press releases in the past decade?

Wikipedia seems to suggest so Where there are multiple departments involved a press release can also be a source of competition between areas of the Commission and Commissioners themselves. This ...
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157 views

How does European Commission deal with EU countries language subtleties / local context?

This is somehow a follow up of this question that suggests that European Union should have reacted to a controversial declaration made by an ex-Romanian Prime Minister. I have noticed that European ...
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232 views

Can the EU maintain financial channels and Oil trade with Iran like they claim in their statement on reimposition of US sanctions on the country?

The US has announced fully enforcing sanctions on Iran, starting from Tuesday this week. The EU issued their statement on that, stating that they regret the US decision but the most curious part is: ...
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Did Ukraine lose half its GDP because of sanctions against Russia?

According to a Russian News Agency Ukrainian politician Evgeny Murayev said that Anti-Russian sanctions of the EU and the United States deprived the Ukraine from half of its gross domestic ...
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188 views

What's the extent of Russian involvement in Brexit, according to latest research?

I found a Channel 4 piece from November last year, discussing 3 papers, roughly in the order of the quantity of evidence (which however might be inversely correlated with the certainty that they were ...
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7answers
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Why would Putin or Russia benefit from a weak EU or weak EU countries?

Various (western) commentators and politicians state that "the only one happy with/benefiting from [insert bad scenario here] is Putin/Russia" (I'm not sure which one(s) of the two they mean). ...
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193 views

What explains the huge difference between UKIP's high-watermark in EU vs UK elections?

On one hand, UKIP came 1st among British parties in the 2014 MEP election with 24 seats, representing 32.9% of British seats. They even came first in the popular vote in that contest with 26.6% of ...
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1answer
120 views

What happens to a MEP who is suspended (or even expelled) from his own party in his home country?

There have been some recent cases of British MEPs being suspended from their party "at home". What are the implications of such moves for their activities (and EU-level groups) as a MEP? Do they lose ...
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1answer
144 views

Could (in theory) the British government or some other British entity “neuter” the British MEPs before Brexit (Spring 2019)?

http://www.lindamcavanmep.org.uk/other-issues/brexit.php says The government has decided that both British Ministers and MEPs will continue to play a full role in EU affairs up until Brexit. I was, ...
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Would European Parliament members from the UK get to vote on the final Brexit deal?

Presuming that a deal is negotiated between the UK and the EU, there would most likely have to be a vote in the European Parliament to confirm it. Given that UK MPs would continue to serve in their ...
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326 views

Why doesn't the EU encourage anonymity rather than creating rules about handling personal data?

The EU has a lot of laws regulating the privacy of personal data which tell companies when, how and under which conditions they may store information about their users. GDPR is the most notorious of ...
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Does the European Union buy soybeans?

Thursday reports relative to the Juncker-Trump meeting: Europeans agreed ... to buy billions of dollars of American soybeans. Now, my question is quite simple: Does the European union buy ...