EU leaders embrace multi-speed Europe amid tensions

The EU needs flexibility as well as unity, the leaders of France, Germany, Italy and Spain say.
When Dutch populist leader Geert Wilders accused young Moroccans of making the streets unsafe, they were thrust into the centre of his election campaign.
SPD chancellor candidate Martin Schulz has called Germany’s Agenda 2010 reforms into question: his campaign will focus on corrections to the social reforms introduced under the SPD-Green Party government between 2003 to 2005. Among other things Schulz plans to extend unemployment benefits. Can he beat Chancellor Merkel with this strategy? And what role will refugee policy play in the campaigning?

Thousands form huge EU flag during Bucharest protest

Thousands protested in the Romanian capital Bucharest yesterday (26 February) against the Social Democrat government that tried to weaken a crackdown on corruption earlier this month.

Four things you need to know about the Dutch elections

Before important French and German elections, all eyes will be on the Netherlands, which is about to re-elect its Lower House on 15 March. The Head of Open Europe’s Brussels office Pieter Cleppe explains everything you need to know about this election, which matters for the whole EU.

AfD and National Front converge ahead of elections

The right-wing spiral of Germany’s anti-EU Alternative für Deutschland party (AfD) has brought it shoulder to shoulder with France’s National Front (NF). The two parties see eye-to-eye on a number of issues, including Russia
More than 3,500 attacks were carried out on migrants and asylum shelters in Germany last year.

The Martin Schulz bounce

What is going on in German politics, just 7 months ahead of the 24th September Bundestag election? How can a party, the SPD – that was consistently 10 points behind the CDU in the polls – suddenly be running neck and neck with Angela Merkel’s party? This graph from Wikipedia maps the state of the polls:

The sharp upturn in support for the SPD of course comes after it was announced on 24th January that Sigmar Gabriel, the SPD’s long-term leader, would not run as the party’s Spitzenkandidat in the September election, and that Martin Schulz should run instead. But what is going on here, and what is actually due to Schulz and what is due to other factors in German politics?

Feminists in office

Sweden boasts the world’s “first feminist government” – so how does it help women in practice?
The military will call up 4,000 extra men and women from 1 January in non-aligned Sweden.
The move paves the way for France to prosecute the far-right leader for tweeting IS violence images.

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