Latest European Commission News

European Commissioner for Promoting our European Way of Life Margaritas Schinas, speaks during a media conference on the New Pact for Migration and Asylum at EU headquarters in Brussels, Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2020. (Stephanie Lecocq, Pool via AP)

EU tries to sell migrant pact amid claims the hardliners won

Sep. 24, 2020 8:40 AM EDT

BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union’s top migration officials struggled Thursday to sell their new plan to overhaul the bloc’s failed asylum system amid concern they have sold out to anti-migrant governments. Critics say the proposal focuses on rapidly deporting people who don’t qualify...

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen gives a statement at the European Commission headquarters in Brussels, Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2020. (Stephanie Lecocq/Pool Photo via AP)

EU proposes new asylum system to help frontline nations

Sep. 23, 2020 1:03 PM EDT

BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union announced a major overhaul of its asylum system Wednesday in hopes that more countries will finally share responsibility for people landing on Europe’s shores seeking sanctuary or better lives. The move comes after years of chaos and dispute among the bloc's 27...

Rights group: Dozens in Belarus investigated amid protests

Sep. 22, 2020 2:01 PM EDT

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Authorities in Belarus, that's seen six weeks of protests against the country's authoritarian president after a disputed election, have opened more than 250 criminal cases that target political opponents, activists and protesters, a Belarusian human rights group said Tuesday. Dozens...

Minister of State for Europe at the German Federal Foreign Office Michael Roth, third left, speaks with Greek Foreign Affairs Minister in charge of European Affairs Miltiadis Varvitsiotis, center, and Permanent Representative of Austria Nikolaus Marschik, right, during a meeting of the General Affairs Council at the European Council building in Brussels, Tuesday, Sept. 22, 2020. European Union ministers meet Tuesday to discuss the stalemate in the Brexit negotiations and prospects to avoid a no-deal cliff-edge transition at the end of the year. (Aris Oikonomou, Pool via AP)

EU envoys discuss borders, travel rules amid 2nd virus wave

Sep. 22, 2020 1:03 PM EDT

BRUSSELS (AP) — EU European affairs ministers agreed Tuesday to better coordinate travel restrictions in the 27-nation bloc and keep their guarantee the smooth circulation of people and goods as many EU nations see a resurgence of coronavirus. In March, several EU nations hastily closed their borders in...

Migrants from different nationalities, mainly from Somalia, Egypt and Morocco, but also from Libya, Sierra Leone, Ivory Coat, Bangladesh, Senegal, Syria, Palestine, Benin and Tunisia, including 14 minors and 4 women, rest on board the Spanish NGO Open Arms vessel on Wednesday 9, 2020, after being rescued last Tuesday night as they were trying to flee Libya on board a precarious wooden boat, in international waters, in the Central Mediterranean sea. (AP Photo/Santi Palacios)

UN agencies urge "fresh start" for EU's failed asylum policy

Sep. 22, 2020 11:03 AM EDT

BRUSSELS (AP) — Two U.N. agencies on Tuesday appealed to the European Union to set aside years of divisive debate over the best way to manage migrants and refugees and make a “fresh start,” as Brussels prepares to unveil a major overhaul of Europe’s failed asylum system. The arrival in...

Valdis Dombrovskis, Vice-President of the EU Commission, speaks at a press conference in Berlin, Germany, following the informal talks of the EU Trade Ministers on Monday, Sept. 21, 2020.  (Bernd von Jutrczenka/Pool via AP)

Key EU states worry South America trade pact may hurt Amazon

Sep. 21, 2020 10:26 AM EDT

BRUSSELS (AP) — EU countries remained divided Monday on whether to approve a preliminary free trade deal drafted last year with South American countries because of concerns related to the Amazon deforestation and the respect of European standards. Speaking at an informal meeting of the 27-nation...

European Commissioner for Values and Transparency Vera Jourova and European Commissioner for Equality Helena Dalli participate in a media conference on the EU anti-racism Action Plan at EU headquarters in Brussels, Friday, Sept. 18, 2020. (AP Photo/Olivier Matthys, Pool)

EU unveils plan to combat racism, increase diversity

Sep. 18, 2020 8:32 AM EDT

BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Commission presented a series of measures Friday aimed at tackling structural racism and discrimination, acknowledging a blatant lack of diversity among the European Union's institutions. The bloc's executive arm set out its action plan for the next five years, which includes...

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen addresses the plenary during her first State of the Union speech at the European Parliament in Brussels, Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2020. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen will set out her vision of the future in her first State of the European Union address to the EU legislators. Weakened by the COVID-19 pandemic and the departure of the United Kingdom, she will center her speech on how the bloc should adapt to the challenges of the future, including global warming, the switch to a digital economy and immigration. (Olivier Hoslet, Pool via AP)

Justice minister accuses EU of 'attack' on Polish democracy

Sep. 17, 2020 2:26 PM EDT

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Poland's justice minister accused the European Union of waging an “attack on democracy" after the European Parliament passed a resolution criticizing lax adherence to the rule of law and discrimination against women, LGBT people and minorities in the EU member-state. Justice...

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen addresses the plenary during her first State of the Union speech at the European Parliament in Brussels, Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2020. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen will set out her vision of the future in her first State of the European Union address to the EU legislators. Weakened by the COVID-19 pandemic and the departure of the United Kingdom, she will center her speech on how the bloc should adapt to the challenges of the future, including global warming, the switch to a digital economy and immigration. (AP Photo/Francisco Seco)

EU chief says UK cannot change EU-UK withdrawal agreement

Sep. 16, 2020 1:53 PM EDT

BRUSSELS (AP) — The president of the European Union's executive arm said Wednesday that the United Kingdom cannot unilaterally change the bilateral Brexit agreement without destroying global trust in the country. Insisting that chances for a future trade deal were slipping away by the day, European...

Suspects, all from Afghanistan escorted by plain clothes policemen and wearing face masks, arrive at a court in Mytilene, the capital of the northeastern Aegean island of Lesbos, Greece, Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2020. The government says the fires in Moria refugee camp were set deliberately by the Afghan migrants protesting a coronavirus lockdown, and authorities on Tuesday announced the arrests of six suspect, include two 17-year-olds, in the case. (AP Photo/Panagiotis Balaskas)

Greece: 4 Afghans charged with arson for fire at Lesbos camp

Sep. 16, 2020 11:56 AM EDT

MYTILENE, Greece (AP) — Four Afghan migrants were formally charged with arson Wednesday for their alleged involvement in fires that destroyed most of a large refugee camp on Greece's eastern island of Lesbos, authorities said. The men, who have not been named, were led to a court on the island and later...