News / UK by Press Association 05/09/2019, 5:57 pm Send us a story Sign up to our Daily newsletter The UK and Israel pledged to work together to curtail Iran’s “destabilising behaviour” in the Middle East. Tensions between Britain and Iran escalated in July when the British-flagged Stena Impero oil tanker was seized by Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guard Corps off the Strait of Hormuz. Iranian authorities were set to release seven crew members this week but 16 remain on-board. The vessel’s capture came two weeks after an Iranian tanker, Adrian Darya 1, was held off Gibraltar with the help of the Royal Marines after it was suspected of violating EU sanctions on Syria. It was released last month by Gibraltar. Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Israeli leader Benjamin Netanyahu met in Downing Street on Thursday, with the escalating situation with Iran one of the most pressing topics. “Both prime ministers agreed on the need to … [Read more...] about UK and Israel agree to confront ‘destabilising’ Iran behaviour
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This article originally published in December has been updated. Unless the British parliament approves a Brexit deal, or another extension to the UK's EU membership is agreed, or the government decides to cancel Brexit – then by law the United Kingdom will leave the European Union without an agreement on October 31. Several of the contenders to replace Theresa May as prime minister, including the favourite Boris Johnson, say they are determined to take the UK out in the autumn, without a deal if necessary. Polling suggests many members of Britain’s ruling Conservative Party favour such an option. A "no-deal" exit would mean that legal arrangements covering many aspects of everyday life would abruptly cease to apply. It would also bring a significant change in the trading relationship between the UK and the EU. The EU is the UK’s largest trading partner, although its importance has been slightly declining. Official UK figures show that 44% of all UK exports went to … [Read more...] about No-deal Brexit: what would ‘WTO terms’ mean for UK-EU trade?
Anna Nadibaidze 1 July 2019 5:17 PM 1 July 2019 5:17 PM Share Twitter Facebook LinkedIn Email Whatsapp Who will replace Jean-Claude Juncker? That’s the question being decided at the European Council summit. But so far, things are not going to plan. From Sunday afternoon, leaders – along with Theresa May, who promised to be “constructive” in the debate – have been discussing who should take over the most senior EU jobs, including the successor to Juncker as European Commission president. Now, the meeting has been suspended until tomorrow without any decision made. Whoever takes over will do so at a key time in the Brexit process. The president will handle the Brexit process on the EU side, whether in terms of making changing to the Political Declaration (which Brussels claims it is open to), negotiating the future relationship with the UK, or leading the Commission’s preparations for a no-deal scenario. While unanimity … [Read more...] about Why the EU is struggling to pick Juncker’s replacement
Picture: AFP Fears in Berlin of the Visegrad Four acting as a blocking minority on EU dossiers has softened. Instead, German policy-makers and analysts are trying to identify common ground between Germany and the V4, writes Anna-Lena Kirch. From a Berlin lens, the Visegrád states (V4) as an entity have disappeared from the radar when it comes to European politics. One major reason is that asylum and migration issues no longer top the list of hotly debated ‘to do’s’ in Brussels. Moreover, domestic policies and discourses in Germany as well as most of the EU have shifted towards the V4 position: away from a strong ‘welcoming culture’ towards better protection of EU external borders, pragmatic third country agreements to reduce irregular migration and against binding relocation schemes. As a result, the controversy around the issue has decreased and there is consensus on the need to focus on the external dimension of migration. Instead, the … [Read more...] about V4 in the EU: neither blocking minority nor agenda-setter
Outgoing Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko made a plea on Tuesday to his successor, the comedian and political novice Volodymyr Zelenskiy. "Please don't allow Putin, don't allow oligarchs, to ruin what we have done for these five years, and the results we have reached and the price we have paid for this opportunity and possibility for our nation," Poroshenko said in an interview with POLITICO. "Because this is maybe one of the highest prices a nation paid for returning to the family of European people." Poroshenko was visiting Brussels for the 10th Eastern Partnership summit — a celebration of the EU's decade-long outreach effort to former Soviet territories. But it was also a valedictory tour for Poroshenko, whose bid for reelection ended in a landslide defeat last month. Many newly elected presidents find their job hard enough when tasked to lead a generally functional, financially solvent country in peacetime. In 2014, Ukrainian voters chose Poroshenko to lead a … [Read more...] about Poroshenko warns against ‘revenge’ of oligarch forces