A group of Brits who live in the Netherlands have gone to court in a bid to keep their EU citizenship after Brexit. Five UK nationals have launched a case in a Dutch court, claiming they feel “forgotten” and fear they may be forced to give up their rights when the UK quits the bloc in March 2019. The landmark case could have knock-on effects for the estimated one million British ex-pats currently living in EU countries. The group is asking a Dutch judge to put “prejudicial questions” about the status of UK nationals post-Brexit to the European Court of Justice. Launching summary proceedings at Amsterdam District Court on Wednesday, lawyer Christiaan Alberdingk Thijm said that while citizens’ rights are clear when a country joins the EU, nobody knows what happens when a country decides to leave. Under the deal agreed at the end of stage one Brexit talks in December, some detail of the rights of British EU citizens post-Brexit have been outlined but other … [Read more...] about Brits in Netherlands launch court bid to keep EU citizenship rights in case that could impact one million ex-pats
The Irish Prime Minister will insist that the Brexit commitments made by Britain in December should be legally binding when he speaks to the European Parliament later. Phase one of the talks concluded at the end of 2017 after agreement that the Irish border should remain open and that those born in Northern Ireland continue to be EU citizens.And although the British government have pledged the agreement "was much more than just legally enforceable", the Taoiseach will call for it to be translated into the legally binding Withdrawal Agreement.Leo Varadkar will be the first EU Leader to speak to the European Parliament in a series of debates called the Future of Europe.Dr Varadkar said before his departure: "The values of solidarity, partnership, and cooperation which are central to the European project, have brought Ireland from a position of being one of the least developed Member States when we joined, to one of the most prosperous today."So, along with other member states who have … [Read more...] about Irish PM: Brexit border agreement should be legally binding
PUBLISHED: 08:00 14 August 2017 Laura Gozzi Stanley Johnson at the book launch in Daunts, Marylebone: Picture: Mark Rusher Archant The gradual deterioration of world order over the last 18 months has taken its toll on many of us, but not Stanley Johnson. Stanley Johnson with son Boris Johnson at the book launch in Daunts, Marylebone: Picture: Mark Rusher The gradual deterioration of world order over the last 18 months has taken its toll on many of us, but not Stanley Johnson. The former MEP, environmentalist, and patriarch of one of Britain’s most recognisable modern political clans (amongst his children are Foreign Secretary Boris, Jo, a Conservative MP, and Rachel, a journalist) was a staunch Remainer during the EU referendum – yet he doesn’t show much in the way of disappointment at last year’s result. Instead, Johnson appears to have funnelled any Brexit emotions into the writing of satirical political thriller Kompromat, which fictionalises world … [Read more...] about Stanley Johnson: ‘I’m happy to see the lighter side of Brexit and Trump. Who wouldn’t be?’
Defense, migration and Brexit and set to dominate European Union leaders' last meeting of the year, starting Thursday in Brussels. Preparation, however, have hardly gone to plan. British Prime Minister Theresa May arrives in the Belgian capital reeling from a parliamentary defeat on Brexit , just as her European counterparts are set to back moving on to the second phase of Brexit negotiations. Read more: EU reignites dispute over refugee quotas ahead of Brussels summit European Council President Donald Tusk, meanwhile, will be desperate to save face after being accused on Wednesday of making "unacceptable" and "anti-European" comments on migration. While both leaders may still leave the summit happy, one man who could be underwhelmed with proceedings is French President Emmanuel Macron. His push for closer fiscal union and debt-sharing in the eurozone will likely have to wait until next year, if not later. DW takes a look at what's on the agenda … [Read more...] about EU leaders’ summit: What’s on the agenda?
Guy Verhofstadt, the European Parliament's chief Brexit negotiator, on Sunday called on British Prime Minister Theresa May to confront British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson and other Brexit advocates in her party with the true consequences of Britain's departure from the European Union by outlining the future trade deal she would like with the bloc. Read more: Angela Merkel has 'absolutely no doubts' about securing Brexit deal May should call the bluff of the "increasingly desperate Brexiteers" and "outline, once and for all, what kind of future relationship the country wants with the European Union," Verhofstadt told the British The Mail on Sunday newspaper. "This may require Theresa May to face down Boris Johnson and others in her party who refuse to accept the reality of the Brexit they campaigned for," he said. EU member states are calling for detailed and concrete commitments from Britain about how it sees its relationship with the bloc after Brexit before … [Read more...] about Brexit: UK’s Theresa May should ‘accept reality,’ says EU negotiator
Following four days of talks between EU and British negotiators, the two sides are in a "state of deadlock" after the UK failed to provide specifics on the so-called Brexit bill, Brussels' chief negotiator Michel Barnier said on Thursday at a joint press conference with his British counterpart. EU officials have estimated the UK's financial commitments to the bloc's programs at up to €100 billion euros ($118.5 billion), while British media have reported that London will likely cap the amount at €40 billion ($47.50 billion), a figure Brussels is unlikely to accept. 'No negotiations' on divorce bill Although British Prime Minister Theresa May said the UK would ensure that the EU does not lose out financially from Brexit during a September speech in Florence, Barnier said London has yet to specify elements of its divorce settlement. Read more: What does the German election mean for Brexit? "This week, however, the UK repeated that it was still not ready to spell out these … [Read more...] about Brexit talks in ‘deadlock’ as divorce negotiations flounder
The European Commission announced on Tuesday that it would pursue legal action against Hungary, Poland and the Czech Republic for refusing to participate in a controversial scheme aiming to distribute refugees more equitably among EU member states. "Europe is not only about requesting funds or ensuring security," said Migration Commissioner Dimitris Avramopoulos. "Europe is also about sharing difficult moments and challenges and common dramas." According to a press release from the commission, the three countries were allowing Rome and Athens to unfairly shoulder the brunt of the burden that affects the entire bloc, ignoring an agreement to take on more asylum seekers. The statement further says that the EU must "redouble our efforts" if it hopes to prevent the "tragic loss of life in the Mediterranean." "For this reason the [European] Commission has decided to launch infringement procedures against these three member states," Avramopoulos said. The scheme, first agreed upon … [Read more...] about EU launches legal case against 3 member states over refugee deal
From 2021 onward, Great Britain's withdrawal from the European Union, commonly known as the Brexit, will leave a 10 to 11 billion euro ($11.4 to $12.6 billion) hole in the EU's annual budget. That is according to EU budget commissioner Günther Oettinger's recent estimate. "We will have to fill the hole with a mix of better use of funds, savings and higher contributions from member states," he said on Wednesday in Brussels. He was presenting a so-called "reflection paper" on the long-term future of the EU budget. This year's EU budget is worth 158 billion euros. When the British leave, the EU will lose about 17 percent of its net income. That means that today's net contributors, among them Germany, will have to give even more in the future. Cuts in funding for structural resources, investment and agriculture would seriously affect today's net beneficiaries, such as Poland, the Czech Republic, Romania, Greece, Hungary, Spain and others. "It is clear that the interests of member … [Read more...] about EU budget: Be nice or you won’t get your allowance!
The summit was intended to spread a bit of optimism. The professionals, it was announced, would now take care of Brexit negotiations, and the British government even promised to protect EU citizens' rights in the United Kingdom after withdrawal. Although that proposal is now being criticized as inadequate and vague, it is still being touted as a sign of progress. After that, the remaining 27 member states sought to create momentum for new projects. The joint press conference held by German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron was then appropriately symbolic. Merkel described the mood of the two-day summit, which ended on Friday, as "optimistic and dynamic." Such words are more easily uttered in the knowledge that economies in almost all member states, even those which were heretofore weak, are starting to grow again. The eurozone has just completed its best quarter in almost six years, which, however, isn't saying much considering the crisis that has been … [Read more...] about The east-west divide in the EU deepens
The European Parliament on Tuesday voted in favor of the "WiFi4EU" scheme, which will finance the creation of up to 8,000 free WiFi hot spots across Europe by 2020. The European Parliament said the Wi-Fi hot spots will be located at centers of public life and public sector bodies, including parks, libraries and hospitals. Financing amounting to 120 million euros ($144 million) will be provided to public bodies on a "first come, first served" basis, and will be distributed in a "geographically balanced manner" with a focus on places with limited connectivity, according to the EU's legislative body. 'Strong political vision' Carlos Zorrinho, a Portuguese member of European Parliament and chief rapporteur of the resolution, said the resolution marked a landmark moment in Brussels' quest to better connect citizens across the bloc. Read more: Check-up for the internet "The WiFi4EU Initiative was a strong political vision that will soon become a concrete reality throughout the EU, assuring … [Read more...] about EU lawmakers back free Wi-Fi scheme