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This Week's Top Stories from the European Parliament - 15-20 December 2016

20 December 2016, 12:57 CET
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News - European Parliament

  • Press release - Car emissions: first committee findings and draft recommendations - Committee of Inquiry into Emission Measurements in the Automotive Sector
    Mon, 19 Dec 2016 15:24:00 GMT
    Evidence of law enforcement shortcomings in EU member states as regards car emissions is set out in the draft report by the Committee of Inquiry into Emission Measurement in the Automotive Sector (EMIS), published on Monday. The report and draft recommendations were prepared jointly by co-rapporteurs Jens Gieseke (EPP, DE) and Gerben-Jan Gerbrandy (ALDE, NL). EMIS will have a first public debate on the text on 12 January.Committee of Inquiry into Emission Measurements in the Automotive Sector
  • Press release - ACP-EU :"Zero immigration has never existed and never will"
    Mon, 19 Dec 2016 15:07:00 GMT
    General : "The history of humanity is the history of migrations. Zero migration has never existed, and it never will", said Louis Michel (ALDE, BE), EU Co-President of the ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly (JPA) at the opening of its 32nd session, in Nairobi (Kenya) on Monday. "We must manage migration flows in a human way, in line with our values. Fortress Europe is not working", he added.
  • Agenda - The Week Ahead 19 – 25 December 2016
    Fri, 16 Dec 2016 10:23:00 GMT
  • Article - Plenary highlights: Sakharov Prize, railways, fundamental rights in the EU
    Fri, 16 Dec 2016 08:00:00 GMT
    Plenary sessions : Islamic State survivors and Iraqi Yazidi activists Nadia Murad and Lamiya Aji Bashar, received Parliament's Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought at the December plenary which was also the last one to be fully presided over by Martin Schulz. MEPs adopted a report on fundamental rights in the EU and updated Parliament's internal rules to improve procedures and transparency. Read about these and other subjects in our article.
  • Press release - Environment MEPs for a stronger EU carbon market - Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety
    Thu, 15 Dec 2016 13:38:00 GMT
    Plans to boost greenhouse-gas emission curbs through the EU carbon market (EU ETS) were backed by the Environment Committee on Thursday. MEPs propose reducing the carbon credits to be auctioned by 2.4% each year, and doubling the capacity of the market stability reserve (MSR) to absorb the excess of allowances on the market.Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety
  • Article - Schulz: "Let us have the courage to fight for the EU"
    Thu, 15 Dec 2016 12:47:00 GMT
    General : Martin Schulz stressed the importance of cooperation and solidarity in his last speech as Parliament President at a European Council meeting. Addressing heads of government at the summit in Brussels, he called on them to make progress on issues such as defence, migration and Russia. "You all agreed that you need the EU, that the EU is the only means to tackle the challenges we are facing in this century. This spirit should never be forgotten and should guide your actions over the years to come."
  • Press release - MEPs call for better access to compensation for Thalidomide victims
    Thu, 15 Dec 2016 12:13:00 GMT
    Plenary sessions : Over fifty years after the Thalidomide tragedy, in which a German-made morning sickness medicine for pregnant women caused malformations in their babies in several EU countries, victims are still fighting for fair compensation. MEPs call on the EU and its member states to ensure that all EU citizens affected have access to similar compensation, in a resolution voted on Thursday.
  • Press release - Plant pests: MEPs call for tougher import checks to protect EU citrus trees
    Thu, 15 Dec 2016 11:44:00 GMT
    Plenary sessions : Draft EU measures to help prevent citrus fruit and tree pests being imported into the EU are not good enough to protect EU growers, says a resolution voted on Thursday. MEPs want more stringent rules and checks to prevent the spread of pests such as citrus black spot fungus and the false codling moth.
  • Press release - Reimposing visas: MEPs back emergency brake measures
    Thu, 15 Dec 2016 11:29:00 GMT
    Plenary sessions : Visa requirements for non-EU nationals will be reintroduced faster when EU countries face irregular migration surges or security risks, under new rules passed by Parliament on Thursday.
  • Press release - Human rights: Buddhism in Tibet, Rohingya in Myanmar, mass graves in Iraq
    Thu, 15 Dec 2016 11:23:00 GMT
    Plenary sessions : The European Parliament condemns the demolition of the Larung Gar Tibetan Buddhist Academy, the imprisonment of scholar Ilham Tohti by Chinese authorities and the persecution of the Rohingya minority in Myanmar, while urging the protection of mass graves in Iraq, in three resolutions voted on Thursday.
  • Press release - 5G internet by 2020: Parliament/Council deal - Committee on Industry, Research and Energy
    Thu, 15 Dec 2016 10:16:00 GMT
    EU member states will make the 700 MHz band available for wireless broadband by 2020, enabling a shift to 5G mobile internet, Parliament and Council negotiators agreed informally on Wednesday evening.Committee on Industry, Research and Energy
  • Press release - MEPs urge Commission to press for full US-EU visa reciprocity
    Thu, 15 Dec 2016 09:23:00 GMT
    Plenary sessions : The EU Commission should comply with EU law by temporarily reintroducing visa requirements for US citizens, so as to encourage Washington to grant citizens of all EU countries visa-free access to the US, said a majority of MEPs in a debate in plenary on Wednesday.
  • Press release - Rule of law and democracy in Poland debated in Parliament for the fourth time
    Wed, 14 Dec 2016 18:05:00 GMT
    Plenary sessions : Persistent concerns about the rule of law and democracy in Poland were debated in the European Parliament on Wednesday. The debate followed a statement by European Commission First Vice-President Frans Timmermans on the situation there.
  • Press release - Grave consequences if Parliament is all but excluded from EU Brexit talks
    Wed, 14 Dec 2016 17:49:00 GMT
    General : On behalf of Parliament's political group leaders, EP President Martin Schulz expressed in a letter to European Council President Donald Tusk his disappointment at the way the draft conclusions of the 27 Heads of State or Government relegate Parliament "to a secondary position in the Brexit negotiation process".
  • Article - Battle for Aleppo: MEPs call for an immediate cessation of hostilities
    Wed, 14 Dec 2016 15:01:00 GMT
    Plenary sessions : The situation in Aleppo following the breakdown of a deal to evacuate rebels and civilians from the long-besieged Syrian city was the focus of a debate in Parliament this morning. Ahead of tomorrow's EU summit, MEPs described the situation variously as "hell on earth", a "death factory" and the "meltdown of humanity". They called for an immediate cessation of hostilities as well as access for humanitarian aid. A number of speakers were highly critical of Russia's role in the conflict.
  • Press release - EU foreign policy should build on diplomacy, development and defence, say MEPs
    Wed, 14 Dec 2016 12:18:00 GMT
    Plenary sessions : Diplomacy, development and defence should be the pillars of EU foreign policy, say MEPs in a resolution voted on Wednesday. They advocate a more realistic strategy on Russia and a "less for less" policy towards countries that try to throw democracy into reverse. MEPs also call on member states to show more unity and trust, and to speak with one voice, so as to make the EU a global player.
  • Press release - EU ports: MEPs back rules on clear user fees and public funding
    Wed, 14 Dec 2016 12:09:00 GMT
    Plenary sessions : The fees and funding that EU ports get from shipping lines and governments should become clearer thanks to new rules backed by MEPs on Wednesday.
  • Press release - MEPs back new rules to boost rail travel
    Wed, 14 Dec 2016 12:00:00 GMT
    Plenary sessions : Public contracts to supply domestic passenger rail services in EU countries will normally have to be put out to tender under new rules backed by Parliament on Wednesday. These rules also aim to boost investment and the development of new commercial services.
  • Press release - Court of Auditors: MEPs endorse Juhan Parts as member for Estonia
    Wed, 14 Dec 2016 11:55:00 GMT
    Plenary sessions : The appointment of former Estonian Prime Minister Juhan Parts as a member of the European Court of Auditors was endorsed by the European Parliament on Wednesday. Mr Parts, who has a degree in Law from the University of Tartu, was Auditor General of Estonia from 1998 to 2002 and Prime Minister from 2003-2005. He has also been Minister of Economy and Communications.
  • Press release - MEPs approve €856,800 in job-search aid for 250 redundant car workers in Spain
    Wed, 14 Dec 2016 11:50:00 GMT
    Plenary sessions : A proposal to grant Spain €856,800 in EU aid to help find new jobs for 250 former car workers made redundant by 29 firms manufacturing motor vehicle parts in the Valencia region was approved by Parliament on Wednesday. The European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (EGF) aid had already been approved by the Council of Ministers on 12 December.
  • Press release - End of term statement by Parliament's President Martin Schulz
    Wed, 14 Dec 2016 11:48:00 GMT
    Plenary sessions : Martin Schulz summed up his five years as European Parliament President in a statement to the House on Wednesday.
  • Press release - MEPs back textiles trade deal with Uzbekistan, welcome end to child labour
    Wed, 14 Dec 2016 11:32:00 GMT
    Plenary sessions : MEPs backed a textiles trade deal with Uzbekistan on Wednesday, acknowledging its efforts to eradicate child labour. But they also urged it to take further steps to end all other forms of forced labour, e.g. by students and civil servants, in its cotton harvest.
  • Press release - MEPs back trade deal with Ecuador
    Wed, 14 Dec 2016 11:29:00 GMT
    Plenary sessions : The European Parliament gave its consent for Ecuador to join the EU trade agreement with Colombia and Peru in a vote on Wednesday. The deal retains Ecuador's preferential access to the EU market.
  • Press release - Debate on migration, security, Russia, Brexit and investment in jobs
    Wed, 14 Dec 2016 11:04:00 GMT
    Plenary sessions : Political group leaders discussed how to relieve the humanitarian tragedy in Aleppo, sanctions against Russia and ways to boost European defence capacities ahead of the European Summit.
  • Press release - Success in difficult times - MEPs praise outgoing Slovak Council Presidency
    Tue, 13 Dec 2016 19:00:00 GMT
    Plenary sessions : The outgoing Slovak Council Presidency was praised by many political group speakers on Tuesday for delivering tangible results in very difficult times. Launching the European Border and Coast Guard, adopting a jobs-and-growth focused EU budget for 2017, signing the EU-Canada trade deal and taking a step forward in modernising trade defence instruments were among those highlighted in the debate with Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico and EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker.

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