The following is a guest post by Ben O’Keeffe
One ideological motif has run throughout this General Election campaign: Nationalism. From the rising force of the SNP and UKIP, to Labour and the Conservative’s pandering to calls for greater controls on immigration, an undercurrent of nationalism has made British identity a more prevalent election issue than in any other recent Westminster election.
A survey by broadcaster SVT shows that the number of EU migrants begging in Sweden has doubled in one year, to 4,000, primarily from Bulgaria and Romania. This is in spite of negotiations on migrants Sweden initiated with Romania last year.
As separatist forces creep closer to Mariupol, and Greece considers a further alliance with Russia, one group could put this new friendship on hold – Ukraine’s Greek community.
As leaders of European Union member states prepare to meet to discuss the Mediterranean refugee crisis, the Council of Europe commissioner for human rights sets the bar for an adequate response.
The former SS officer Oskar Gröning admitted “moral guilt” at the start of his trialin Lüneberg on Tuesday. In one of the last Nazi trials, he stands accused of aiding the murder of at least 300,000 people at the Auschwitz extermination camp. The 93-year-old’s confession is as vital as the memorials and museums for dealing with the Nazi era, some commentators argue. Others see holding this trial 70 years later as pointless.
Mafia, McDonalds and youth exploitation: The Milan World Expo, opening on May Day, prepares a new generation for the years to come.
Today sees the launch of the Milan Expo, an international exposition of food and agriculture which will take place in Italy’s financial capital over the next six-months. This year’s theme, ‘Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life’ will see farmers, artisans and entrepreneurs from around the world set-up stall to sell their wares alongside stage-shows, concerts and talks by a roster of esteemed futurologists. This is a real-world pop-up show of all the things that might normally be encountered in Wired magazine: avant-garde art, gourmet cooking and sci-fi tech, all on display in a gargantuan ‘agro-park’ which is expected to host 20 million visitors.
The European Council says that the situation in the Mediterranean is a tragedy. Its statement may display some sympathy, but an acknowledgement of responsibility is nowhere to be seen.
The EU is finally waking up to the desperate crisis unfolding in the Mediterranean and North Africa, and tomorrow’s extraordinary Council summit is a step towards dealing with its consequences, writes Mirjam van Reisen.