Refugee tragedies in the Mediterranean… A Eurosphere roundup…

MAIN FOCUS: Austerity and hope in Ireland | 16/10/2013

The Irish government presented the budget for 2014 on Tuesday – the seventh austerity budget in a row. Prime Minister Enda Kenny stressed that the top priority was to create jobs and exit the bailout programme. Ireland’s success is proof that the stringent austerity policy is the right approach, some commentators say. Others warn that the weakest sections of society will be hardest hit by the cuts.

‘Budget Deadline Day’ in Europe

As you may have noticed, yesterday saw numerous governments across Europe unveiling their latest budgets for the coming year. Rather than just being a coincidence, this is down to the fact that yesterday was the deadline for eurozone governments to submit their budget plans to the European Commission ? ‘Budget Deadline Day’, if you will.
Bulgaria has the worst air pollution in the EU: Report


More than 90% of Europeans living in cities are exposed to unsafe levels one of the most health damaging air pollutants, with Bulgaria having the dirtiest air among EU countries, says a new study by the European Environment Agency (EEA).


Despite falling emission levels and reductions of some air pollutant concentrations over the past decades, EU air pollution is still far from being solved, according to the report, ‘Air quality in Europe ? 2013‘.

France far-right party storms local election


France’s National Front (FN) won by a wide margin in a local by-election in Brignoles, southeast France on Sunday (13 October), the latest sign the anti-immigrant party is benefiting from discontent with ruling Socialists and mainstream opposition conservatives.


Even though the National Front already has an established presence in the region, the victory in the canton of Brignoles near the port town of Toulon suggests it is well placed to make gains in 2014 municipal and European Parliament elections.

True or false? 600,000 unemployed EU migrants live in Britain

?An EU study has found 600,000 unemployed migrants are living in Britain? ? The Sunday Telegraph claimed yesterday.  True or false?

The Bologna Process model for world regions: Lessons from the Europe of Knowledge

The Bologna Process, inspired by the development of the Europe of Knowledge, has been an example for world regions[i]. The policy implementation experiences from the Bologna Process have been simulated by world regions that value higher education cooperation across countries. Across regions the degree of integration in higher education varies along the policy process from discursive originations to ranging extents of cooperation.

What does the rise of fascism mean for Greece and for Europe?

Nationalist, eurosceptic and xenophobic sentiments have been brewing in Greek society for many years. The policies of austerity have brought them to the surface – not created them

MAIN FOCUS: New refugee tragedy in the Mediterranean | 14/10/2013

Yet another refugee boat capsized off the coast of Lampedusa on Saturday. More than 30 people died, while around 200 survivors were saved by Maltese and Italian rescuers. Northern Europe has left Southern Europe to deal with the flood of refugees, commentators write, and propose the establishment of a processing centre for asylum seekers in Africa.


MAIN FOCUS: Election victory for the Front National | 15/10/2013

The far-right Front National has won the local by-elections in the town of Brignoles in southern France. The party’s candidate Laurent Lopez beat his rival from the conservative UMP in the run-off vote on Sunday. Now the mainstream parties must stop the rise of the Front National, commentators urge, warning that with the crisis Europe’s right-wing populists could take over the centre.


Suspense grows in EU-Ukraine gamble

The mandate of the European Parliament’s monitoring mission looking into the case of Ukraine’s jailed former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko has been extended until mid-November, in the hope that her release would make possible the signature of a landmark EU-Ukraine association agreement.

Ukraine hopes to sign the pact with the European Union at the 28-29 November Eastern Partnership summit in Vilnius, Lithuania.  The other Eastern partner countries are Moldova, Belarus, Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan, whose delegates will also attend the summit.

Refugee crisis: Italy to increase navy presence in the Mediterranean


Malta and Italy are calling for changes to EU refugee policy after the Lampedusa tragedy, with Rome announcing it will send more troops to its southern border. Libya has also said it will take a tougher stance on migrants. EurActiv Germany reports.


This week marked the start of the so-called ?safe sea? operation, a programme to increase Italy?s humanitarian military presence in the Mediterranean, announced by Italian Prime Minister Enrico Letta.

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