Expert analysis, features and profiles of key topical issues in the European Union.
Lithuania won the EU's final green light this week to join the eurozone in 2015, completing a Baltic embrace of Europe's checkered single currency as security concerns over Russia nudge other reluctant eastern candidates towards adoption.
Italy reacted with disbelief on Thursday to charges that Italian Foreign Minister Federica Mogherini would be too pro-Russian as the European Union's next foreign policy chief because of Italy's economic ties with Moscow.
Overwhelmed by an influx of mostly Syrian immigrants, Bulgaria has taken steps to secure its EU border -- including building a barbed-wire fence -- but now faces criticism from rights groups.
David Cameron has dramatically hardened his government's eurosceptic stance for a battle with Brussels, but may have weakened his hand while increasing the risk that Britain could crash out of the EU, analysts said.
EU leaders are set to tackle the jigsaw of the bloc's top jobs after the European Parliament approved former Luxembourg premier Jean-Claude Juncker as head of the European Commission Tuesday.
Jean-Claude Juncker, approved by the European Parliament Tuesday to head the European Commission, is a veteran EU insider versed in the art of getting things done in the labyrinth of the bloc.
Philip Hammond, named Britain's new foreign secretary on Tuesday, is an arch-eurosceptic who wants to leave the European Union unless London retakes significant powers from Brussels.
The EU boasts several powerful women but the top jobs being decided for its European Commission are likely to be overwhelmingly filled by men.
Faced by a flood of would-be migrants heading for Europe's shores in rickety boats, the officers running the Italian navy's rescue operation are desperate for help.
Switzerland has one-upped its European Union neighbours with a free trade deal with China that its politicians and business sector say is crucial to boosting ties with the world's second-largest economy.
While the United States, Canada, Brazil, Argentina and China and many other countries have warmly embraced genetically modified crops, Europe remains the world's big holdout.
One year ago, Croatia joined the European Union with great fanfare, sparking hopes that membership of the rich 28-nation bloc would transform the fortunes of the tourism-dependent economy.
Europe's fragile recovery is stalling, a batch of economic data showed this week, with analysts warning that France, with the eurozone's second-biggest economy, could be slipping into another downturn.
David Cameron's failure to prevent Jean-Claude Juncker from becoming the new European Commission president risks pushing Britain out of the EU unless he builds bridges to secure reforms before a 2017 referendum, experts say.
The EU's move to sign accords with Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia is a major setback for Russian President Vladimir Putin, but the tug-of-war over Moscow's ex-Soviet sphere of influence is far from over, say analysts.
The European Union signed "historic" association accords with Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova Friday as the three former Soviet republics pledged themselves to a future in Europe in the face of bitter Russian opposition.
Britain's David Cameron headed for defeat at Thursday's EU summit after being abandoned by his allies in a battle over the next European Commission chief likely to mark Europe's future.
Poland's top diplomat, Radoslaw Sikorski, who burnished his credentials in the Ukraine crisis, is now in the spotlight over leaks in which he appears to rubbish Polish-US ties and Britain's prime minister.
David Cameron's gamble in opposing Jean-Claude Juncker as European Commission president has burnt bridges with allies and left him with few cards to play before a likely 2017 referendum on Britain leaving the EU, experts say.
To Olli Rehn, the EU's low-key but hardline economics affairs commissioner, another push against austerity could not have come as much of a surprise.