Latest European Council News

France's Minister for European Affairs Clement Beaune, foreground, and Cyprus' Foreign Minister Nikos Christodoulides take part in a news conference at the Foreign Ministry building in the capital Nicosia, Friday, Sept. 18, 2020. Beaune says the European Union should consider imposing sanctions against Turkey if the country continues a hydrocarbons search inside waters where Greece and Cyprus claims exclusive rights. (AP Photo/Petros Karadjias)

France seeks EU sanctions on Turkey over energy tensions

Sep. 18, 2020 7:12 AM EDT

NICOSIA, Cyprus (AP) — France on Friday backed Cyprus' calls for the European Union to consider imposing tougher sanctions on Turkey if the Turkish government won't suspend its search for energy reserves in eastern Mediterranean waters where Cyprus and Greece claim exclusive economic rights. French...

European Union Council President Charles Michel, left, is greeted by Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades at the entrance of the Presidential Palace following their meeting in the capital Nicosia, Cyprus, on Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2020. Michel is visiting Cyprus after travelling to Greece amid a diplomatic drive to de-escalate a weeks-long standoff at sea over Turkey's hydrocarbons search in waters were Greece and Cyprus claim exclusive economic rights. (AP Photo/Petros Karadjias)

Cyprus: EU sanctions an option to halt Turkey's gas search

Sep. 16, 2020 4:42 PM EDT

NICOSIA, Cyprus (AP) — The European Union shouldn’t discard imposing tougher sanctions to get Turkey to give up an “unlawful” hydrocarbons search in the eastern Mediterranean that has ratcheted up tensions, the president of Cyprus said Wednesday. President Nicos Anastasiades said the...

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 wants better coordination on virus, announces summit

Sep. 16, 2020 6:07 AM EDT

BRUSSELS (AP) — European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said Wednesday that the bloc must rise above its fragmented approach on dealing with the coronavirus by centralizing more decision-making on health issues. She also told EU legislators that Italy will host a global health summit next year,...

European Council President Charles Michel, center, accompanied by Greek officials, looks at the new temporary refugee camp in Kara Tepe during his visit on the northeastern island of Lesbos, Greece, Tuesday, Sept. 15, 2020. Greece has called on the European Union to jointly run new refugee camps being built on its eastern islands as part of a planned overhaul of the bloc's migration policy. (Dimitris Tosidis/Pool via AP)

Greece wants the EU to help run its island migrant camps

Sep. 15, 2020 4:03 PM EDT

KARA TEPE, Greece (AP) — The Greek government on Tuesday urged the European Union to jointly run new refugee camps on Greece's eastern islands as part of an overhaul of the EU's migration policies. Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis made the proposal at an Athens meeting with European Council...

Turkey's research vessel, Oruc Reis anchored off the coast of Antalya on the Mediterranean, Turkey, Sunday, Sept. 13, 2020. Greece's Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis welcomed the return of a Turkish survey vessel to port Sunday from a disputed area of the eastern Mediterranean that has been at the heart of a summer stand-off between Greece and Turkey over energy rights.(AP Photo/Burhan Ozbilici)

Turkey: Survey ship at heart of Med row at port for resupply

Sep. 14, 2020 12:01 PM EDT

ISTANBUL (AP) — Turkey’s top diplomat said Monday that a research ship at the center of a diplomatic row with Greece pulled back to shore for maintenance and resupply, but its survey of hydrocarbon resources in the eastern Mediterranean will continue. Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said the Oruc...

Central European leaders discuss Belarus, fighting COVID-19

Sep. 11, 2020 1:13 PM EDT

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — The prime ministers of four central European countries said Friday that a new election should be held in Belarus to allow the country's voters to decide the course of its future. “We all agree that Belarus should hold free elections so that the Belarusian nation can on its own...

From left to right, Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, Italy's Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte, Cyprus President Nikos Anastasiadis, France's President Emmanuel Macron, Portugal's Prime Minister Antonio Costa, Spain's Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez and Malta's Prime Minister Robert Abela , attend a media conference after an emergency summit in Porticcio, Corsica island, Thursday Sept.10, 2020. Leaders of EU countries on the Mediterranean Sea are holding an emergency summit in Corsica on Thursday amid fears of open conflict with Turkey stemming from mounting tensions over oil and gas drilling. (Ludovic Marin/Pool Photo via AP)

Southern EU leaders urge Turkey to end "unilateral" actions

Sep. 10, 2020 3:56 PM EDT

PARIS (AP) — Leaders of seven southern European countries on Thursday urged Turkey to end “unilateral and illegal activities” in the eastern Mediterranean and resume dialogue to ease tensions in the region. Heads of states and government of France, Greece, Cyprus, Malta, Italy, Spain and...

FILE - In this Friday, June 5, 2020 file photo, European Union's chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier gives a news conference after Brexit talks, in Brussels, Belgium. The European Union’s chief Brexit negotiator said Monday Sept. 7, 2020, he is going to seek “clarification” from his counterpart in the U.K. over reports that the British government may be planning to renege on commitments made ahead of its departure from the bloc earlier this year.  (Yves Herman, Pool Photo via AP, File)

As EU talks resume, UK says it could break international law

Sep. 8, 2020 12:03 PM EDT

LONDON (AP) — The U.K. indicated Tuesday that it was prepared to break an international agreement as post-Brexit trade discussions with the European Union resumed on an increasingly acrimonious tone. With concerns mounting that the talks could be just weeks from collapse, the U.K. urged the EU to show...

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas holds a press conference following the informal talks of the EU Foreign Ministers in Berlin, Germany, Friday, Aug. 28, 2020. The topics of the so-called Gymnich meeting included developments in Belarus and the dispute over natural gas in the eastern Mediterranean between Turkey and the EU states of Greece and Cyprus. (Kay Nietfeld/dpa via AP)

EU urges Turkey to stop drilling in Med, ponders sanctions

Aug. 28, 2020 3:03 PM EDT

BERLIN (AP) — The European Union on Friday urged Turkey to halt what it called its “illegal” prospecting activities in contested waters in the eastern Mediterranean and ordered EU officials to speed up work aimed at blacklisting Turkish officials linked to the energy exploration. Tensions are...

Belarusian opposition supporters light phones lights and wave an old Belarusian national flags during a protest rally in front of the government building at Independent Square in Minsk, Belarus, Wednesday, Aug. 19, 2020. The authoritarian leader of Belarus complained that encouragement from abroad has fueled daily protests demanding his resignation as European Union leaders held an emergency summit Wednesday on the country's contested presidential election and fierce crackdown on demonstrators. (AP Photo/Dmitri Lovetsky)

Belarus leader warns of tough new steps against protesters

Aug. 19, 2020 3:12 PM EDT

MINSK, Belarus (AP) — Belarus’ authoritarian leader threatened Wednesday to bring criminal charges against opposition leaders and called on his security services to get tougher on demonstrators — a possible harbinger of a renewed crackdown on the peaceful protests challenging the extension of...