The remaining 20 of the EU’s 28 member countries go to the polls on Sunday to vote in the European elections. However, after years of economic crisis and rising unemployment, people have come to question the need for closer integration.
A Nazi salute may – or may not – land you in jail in Switzerland. Apparently, you are safe if you manage to prove that it was intended as a personal statement and not a marker of political affiliation, the country’s highest court has ruled.
German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier has called for restraint in imposing new sanctions on Russia, as politicians, businesses and the general public in Germany grow ever more skeptical of putting more pressure on Moscow.
Germany’s Chancellor Merkel is in the White House for the first time since it was revealed the NSA monitored her personal communications. During bilateral talks with Barack Obama, Merkel is expected to broach sanctions on Russia and US spying.
Hungarians re-elected Viktor Orban, who led the country out of crisis and resisted Brussels’ influence, as prime minister, early parliamentary election results showed. Meanwhile, the far-right Jobbik party gained substantial political power.
US and EU diplomats have said they will help Ukraine cut back on Russian gas, and also promised to help diversify the Russian-dominated European energy market, a difficult long term task for energy-dependent EU countries.
Chinese President Xi Jinping is wrapping up his official European tour. His hosts have pampered the head of state and his 200-strong business entourage as the two economic blocs work towards a multi-billion dollar free trade agreement.
Ukraine’s new government is under the influence of the radical nationalists, according to Russia’s Foreign Minister, who believes his foreign counterparts are well aware of the fact, but are unwilling to acknowledge it.
The self-proclaimed government in Kiev has appointed two of Ukraine’s richest men to govern large industrial regions in the defiant east. One of the reasons for the Maidan protest was the influence the rich have on politics in the country.
European lawmakers are calling into question the ability of the Troika to effectively deal with the crisis, and many are attacking its methods. An investigation report due in April will look at the handling of the Greek sovereign debt debacle.
Tens of thousands of people took to the streets of Paris and Lyon Sunday to protest against France’s legalization of gay marriage and defend their interpretation of traditional family values, which brought together conservatives from across France.