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CoE Committee wants to Stop Turkey's candidates from entering in the ECHR

Written by ACM
Friday, 06 October 2017
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*Strasbourg/CoE/Angelo Marcopolo/- At the Same Time that a Judge imPrisoned in Turkey was chosen as one among the 3 Candidates for prestigious "Vaklav Havel" Human Rights Prize award, next week in Strasbourg, the  competent CoE's Committee on the Election of Judges wants to Stop controversial Candidates handpicked by Ankara's Regime from Entering inside the PanEuropean Court of Human Rights (ECHR).


If those Conclusions of CoE's Committee on the Election of Judges, which finds that the relevant Standards and Values of the PanEuropean Organisation for Democracy, Human Rights and Rule of Law, are Not Fulfilled in the case of Turkey, are Not Opposed by a Sufficient Number of MEPs, on Monday Morning, at the Beginning of CoE's Parliamentary Assembly's (PACE)Plenary Session in Strasbourg, then, Ankara won't be able to push its favorites in order to be elected by MEPs for a job inside the CoE now.


On the Contrary, the competent CoE's Committee forwarded the 3 other Candidates presented by the Government of Georgia for the Election of a Georgian EuroJudge in the ECHR by the PACE next week.


CoE's competent bodies have already refused, at various occasions in the Past, to endose the Candidates presented by some among the PanEuropean CoE's 47 Member States, (f.ex. for Lack of relevant Legal Experience, Not even 1 Female Canddate, etc), but very Rarely or Never yet for the Same serious Reasons as in Turkey's case, which obviously concern the main Substance of CoE's mission, (i.e. to Protect and promote Democracy, Human Rights and Rule of Law).

 

(../..)


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(NDLR: "DraftNews", due to be UpDated+)
 
 
 
(Photo; CoE's Internal Garden Sculpture)


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New Strasbourg 'Great East' Region Prefect Marx to "EF": TransBorder Links now = Necessity+Dynamism

Written by ACM
Thursday, 05 October 2017
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*Strasbourg/Press Club/Angelo Marcopolo/- A New French President, Emmanuel Macron, bringing also a New Prefect, Jean-Claude Marx, in Strasbourg's strategic PanEuropean Headquarters of the CoE, EU Parliament's full Plenary Sessions, ECHR, EU-Citizens' Defensor, Shenghen system's Secretariat, Euro-Corps Army, ARTE RadioTV, Euro-Campus, Human Frontier project, etc, soon after the local New Region of the "Great East", Extended its Borders throughout the (mainly Franco-German+) €uroZone's Core area (See Infra), it was Natural to ask for his Plans in relation to this rare responsibility, important for all the European Continent, and well Beyond, (particularly at these Times when Debates about EU's more Franco-German Future after UK's BREXIT, due at Early 2019, have just Started).


    The 1st relevant Occasion was offered by his Press Conference to Strasbourg's Press Club, symbolically and practically oganized just before his 1st Meeting, Later Today, with All Representatives of the European and International Community present in Strasbourg, as he Noticed himself, in the context of his reply to our query, (See Infra).


    - "Eurofora"s Question to the New Prefect of Strasbourg's "Great East" Region, (much Bigger than in the Past), pointed at its main Characteristic, (Unique in Europe), to Bring Together 5 Key European Countries (including the Two Biggest) : France, Germany, Switzerland, Luxembourg and Belgium, at EU's Core, (by Linking their common Borders to Strasbourg's New Region). And we asked his View on the foreseable Future of TransBorder Cooperation/Integration, etc., (both via the "Superior Rhine" agreements, already linking France, Germany and Switzerland, as well as in other, Wider terms).

(On earlier "Eurofora" NewsReports around Strasbourg's Region and Franco-German+ TransBorder Cooperation/Integration, See, f.ex., among others, also : http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/hoyeronfrancogermansummit.htm lhttp://www.eurofora.net/brief/brief/alsacenotoalcaponearea.html ; http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/alsacepresidentrichertonacaleuropeanprojects.html ; http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/franceregionelelectionsrepublicanswithgreensorfnrightistsforstrasbourg.html ; http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/newbigfrenchregionheadricherton5eustatesandchina.html ; http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/newstrasbourgbigregionprefect.html ; http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/strasbourgregionpresidentrichertandfrencheconomyministermacrononhighspeedinternet.html ; http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/prefetfrataccistrasbourgasgebevanyorshanghai.html ; http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/frenchregionspresidentricherttoeurofora.html ; http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/francogermancoreregionleaderseyescienceandethics.html ; http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/frenchregionschiefrichertquits.html , etc). 


    - Even if "Some may have seen with Question Marks and Perplexity the Creation of New, Bigger Regions in France, back on 2014-2015", nevertheless,


    >>> "a Big Advantage of this New, "Great East" Region is that it extends through All the Franco-German Borders", sharply replied Marx.


    - Indeed, "that's an Extremely Strong Point, in order to facilitate the Continuation and further Development of the TransBorder Cooperation" in wider terms, Strasbourg's New Prefect underlined.


    - The latter "is expressed mainly in 2 Big Areas : (A) The Superior Rhine (OberRhein) cooperation, which interests Alsace (French area), Baden-Wurttemberg (German Länder), and Switzerland, as well as (B) a Central part of French Borders with Lorraine, and Luxembourg, a part of Belgium, the Saarland and Rhineland-Palatinate" (German Ländern), he described.

 


     => - This "gives a Global View of All our Borders with the North-Eastern Neighbouring Countries, including the Total of Franco-German borderlines", observed Prefect Marx, (who holds particular competences, in addition to a recent Experience on Security at his previous job in France's South-Eastern Region of PACA, among Italy and the Mediterranean Sea, also on Geography).


     - A fortori, "it includes the Totality of Franco-German Borderlines, which have recenly become much More a sort of a Link !"


    - Such realities obviously concern also a Growing Number of many EU Citizens' EveryDay Lives, as, f.ex., "I had the opportunity to oberve, just between Lorraine and Luxembourg, where More than 90.000 Persons travel, Each Day (from and to France) in order to Work around Luxembourg City", he added, (a Spectacular and sympathetic Human and Social phenomenon, that has, indeed, surprized "Eurofora" personally, in particular during our Return trips towards Strasbourg from Brussels' EU Summits).


    - "Recent Changes" also brought, f.ex., Near the Borders between Lorraine area and Luxembourg, New Installations by "a University, the Ministry of Environment, several Modern High-Tech. Enterprises", he said earlier.


    + Similar phenomena, with TransBorder Workers, Businesses, etc,  naturally exists also in Alsace area, (for which they constitute a well-known, Traditional Issue), "up to Switzerland", and they are all "Sources of (Economic-Sociocultural) Dynamism", New Prefect Marx found now.


----------------------


    Meanwhile, in an Interesting intervention by the CEO of "Würth" Company for France Pierre Hugel, (a pioneer German Family Business headquartered at Neighbouring Baden-Wurttemberg German Länder, which evolved from Family-run Manufacture to a Big, Innovative Enterprise exporting in 26 Foreign Countries with about 250.000 Clients, creating, inter alia, Solar Panels with Selenium -instead of Silicon, Electric Batteries, etc., and Sponsoring Electric Cars "E-Rallies" around the World), found that a "Relaunch of the Franco-German motor, including with a warmer ambiance also after the election of new French President Emmanuel Macron, highlights a Better Future for Europe, (pointing, f.ex., also to the Fact that his Enterprise, after a +12% Benefit back on 2011, followed by "Stagnation", just Re-Started to have a +1 - 2% Benefit on 2016, now followed by an estimated +3 - 4% in 2017).


    He was referring to the Wider Fact that, as the "Great East" Region's new Prefect had saod earlier, even if Statistcs show that UnEmployment has Not Yet been Absorbed, remaining at a Too High Level, However, New Data indicate that the Mood of Businesses is becoming Better, and this may "Boost Investments".


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    => - "In consequence, I think that TransBorder Cooperation and more, are here, Nowadays, an Absolute Necessity !", stressed Jean-Luc Marx, continuing on his reply to "Eurofora"s above-mentioned question.

    => - That's why, inter alia, "Later-on, this Afternoon, I am Hosting, at the Prefectoral Palace, a collective Meeting with all the Diplomatic Corps in Strasbourg, i.e. mainly numerous Countries' Consuls and Consul Generals, etc.", he revealed.


    + This is "in order to have Exchanges, not only on TransBorder Cooperation, but also, in much Wider terms, on what is usually called <<Strasbourg's European and International vocation>>", he concluded, in reply to "Eurofora"s Question,


(knowing that this includes not only Russia and other CoE's PanEuropean area's 47 Member Countries, but also the USA, Canada, Japan, Israel, Brazil, China, etc).


    - Indeed, Strasbourg's new and bigger "Great East Region", (that Recent Presidential and Parliamentary Elections in France also revealed that it has even a quite Specific Political Characteristics among its Citizens), after all, (as he had already pointed out in his Introductory remarks), "is almost Twice as Big as Belgium !"...

    => - So, Today, this "Great East" Region, can speak without being ashamed f.ex. with Baden-Wurttemberg and Rhenania-Palatinat (German Länder/Federated States)", New Prefect Marx added, later-on, (at anOther reply to a Different question by our Collegue from the Local Strasbourg's Newspaper "DNA"'s experienced Political News Director, Jacques Fortier).

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    + By the way, concerning the Different, but adjacent Debate about the Future of the Historic "Alsace" area's former Region (Comp., f.ex.: ...), Prefect Marx observed, Earlier, that French President Macron had clearly Excluded any new Reform of the Country's overall Regional DeCentralisation System during the Next 4,5 Years, after that which had been made by his predecessor, Hollande, back on 2015, which notoriously fusioned Alsace, together with Lorraine and Champagne-Ardennes, inside the Bigger, New "Great East" Region. But, the "Reality" of Alsace still exists, f.ex., among others, also in his own relations with Rural Police ("Gendarmes"), Airport and Borders Police ("PAF"),  the Attorney's Office at nearby Colmar, etc., (while, Alsace had Not really Disappeared, not even in the Period of 1918-1955, when Not any Regional Entity did Not Exist in France). Thus, if tehre is a wish to re-create an "Institutionalized" Alsacian entity, this could be done, even Now, by a Fusion of the 2 existing Departments of Lower and Superior Rhine, into a Unified New Alsatian Department, adding, through negotiations, Complementary Competences, f.ex. among others, also : "on Tourism, Spatial Planning, TransBorder Cooperation".


 (..e. around "Superior Rhine/OberRhein"' pre-existing Structure : Comp. Supra. See also, on the possibility of French Departments' Fusion : http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/new/frenchregionschiefrichertquits.html)

 

 

(../..)


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("DraftNews", as already send to "Eurofora" Subscribers/Donors, earlier. A more accurate, full Final Version might be published asap). 
 
 
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Cyprus-UK BREXIT Negotiation will Start+Advance well, says to "EF" Governing Party MEP Christoforou

Written by ACM
Tuesday, 03 October 2017
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*Strasbourg/EU Parliament/Angelo Marcopolo/- The Forhcoming Cyprus - UK Negotiations on relevant "BREXIT"'s aspects would Start soon and shall Advance Well, optimistically said to "Eurofora" Nicosia's Governing Party's mainstream MEP Lefteris Christoforou, from the Biggest Group of MEPs, that of ChristianDemocrats/EPP.


EU Parliament will have to Vote in order to Endorse the result of EU - UK Negotiations on BREXIT, and, therefore, it has recently Started to closelly Follow their Progress, as its new President, Antonio Tajani, recently announced.

Christoforou was Speaking to "Eurofpra" in EU Parliament in Strasbourg the Same Day that its Plenary Debated and Voted, Earlier Today, on the general "State of play of (EU) Negotiations with the United Kingdom" until now, with the participation of EU's Chief Negotiator on BREXIT, Michel Barnier, (Comp.  Barnier's recent Statements to "Eurofora", previously, at : ....).

Cyprus - UK Negotiations on specific Issues of common interest are due to Start Next Week, from the 11th of October, in Brussels.

The Chief Negotiator for Cyprus is Ambassador Minas Hatzimichael, a Top Diplomat who holds a Solid Experience particularly on Multilateral Relations, including at the CoE in Strasbourg and at the UNO in New York, etc., (with whom "Eurofora"s co-Founder has already Cooperated in the Past).  

The Beginning of those substantial Negotiations is due to Focus on the 2 Brittish Bases existing at the Strategic Island according to Treaties signed since its Independence on 1960-1961, about their possible Future after the planned Withdrawal of the UK from the EU.

- Among those EU Member States which are due to be Most Affected by BREXIT's eventual Consequences, Together with Ireland, Malta (also Member of the Brittish "Commonwealth", as Cyprus too), and perhaps the Netherlands, is included also Cyprus, for whom BREXIT is "an Important Issue", reportedly stressed, in parallel, Today at Nicosia, the experienced Cypriot Long-Time Foreing Minister, (and Former Top MEP in Strasbourg/Brussels (in charge of Foreign Policy at EU Parliament's Biggest Political Group, that of EPP, in the Past), Ioannis Kasulides, (Comp. various Kasulides' Statements to "Eurofora" on manifold Different topical EU/CoE/UNO issues, f.ex. : ...+... +..., etc).

- However, all the Repercussions of BREXIT vis a vis Cyprus canNot yet be Determined Precisely, for the Time being, inter alia, also because of an Insufficient, yet, Progress in the Main EU - UK Negotiations until now, Kasulides reportedly added.
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 pe_final_vote_on_brexit_resolution_eurofora_screenshot_400

Indeed, the Resolution debated and Adopted, earlier Today here, by a Strong Majority of 557 Votes, Against Only 92, and with 29 Abstentions in EU Parliament, supports the View that "Sufficient Progress has Not yet been made" on the 2 Main EU Priorities : "Citizens Rights, Ireland and Northern Ireland, and ...UK's Financial Obligations".


=> Therefore, EU Parliament's Resolution "calls" on EU Heads of State/Government, (who are due to meet in a Summit in Brussels later this Month, on 19-20/10/2017), "to Decide, at [their] October Meeting to Postpone [their] Assessment" on BREXIT's course, "Unless there is a Major Breakthrough, in line with this resolution in all 3 areas" cited above.

 - But, "for the Moment", i.e. as long as "there is not sufficient progress on the negotiations on the table", then, "there is No chance of Entering into the 2nd Phase of the (EU - UK) Negotiations", (i.e. on London's Future Status vis a vis the EU, in case of BREXIT), Warned the President of EU Parliament's Biggest Group, German ChristianDemocrat/EPP MEP, Martin Weber, during Today's Debates here.


>>> However, at the foreseeable Horizon, - "We Need clear Results in 2019; Otherwise the Consent of the European Parliament is Not guaranteed", President Weber also Urged everybody, before briefly meeting, later Today, also "Eurofora", at a subsequent occasion, (See, f.ex.: ...).
 

epp_group_president_weber__agg_at_eu_parliament_october_2017_eurofora_400 

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+ Cypriot Citizens who Reside and/or Work in the Brittish Bases, which extend throughout considerable areas of the Island's Southern SeaCoasts, are due to be at the Focus of the Cyprus - UK Negotiations on BREXIT, that will start meanwhile (Comp. Supra).

During Today's Votes in EU Parliament's Plenary in Strasbourg, a Very Strong Majority of 586 MEPs clearly Rejected a controversial Amendment by the EuroSceptical EFDD Group to Drop a Call for EU Citizens' "Settled Status" as Permanent Residents in the UK, where a particularly Large Proportion of Cypriots have been notoriously Living since a Long Time ago.

eu_parliaments_new_pressroom_in_strasbourg_october_2017_eurofora_400


Moreover, EU Parliament also Rejected another  Amendment which had attempted to ask for what it called "Gibraltar's Sovereignity", Not to be put in "Question" by BREXIT Negotiations.


However, EU Parliament "on the Other hand" , Positively "Noted" that "that in her Speech of 22 September 2017" UK Prime Minister Theresa May, "Excluded any Physical Infrastructure at the border" with Ireland, (i.e., f.ex., a Wall or Fence, etc).


This might even "presume... that the UK stays in (EU's) Internal Market and Customs Union, or that Norhern Ireland stays" there "in some form", MEPs went on to Speculate.


Such Points were specifically Adopted with a particular Majority of MEPs' Votes, even Stronger than that which played for the Entire Resolution : 562 Votes in Favor, instead of just 557, respectively.


Last, but not least, EU Parliament also Rejected anOther Amendment, asking to "Prevent a <<Hardening>> of the Border between Spain and Gibraltar" after the BREXIT, as it said

- Even if this particular Point, Exceptionally, attracted a somewhat Higher Minority of MEPs than All Other Votes : 90 instead of a usual 70 in Most Other Cases, i.e. +20 Dissident MEPs more than Average...

 

 

(../..)

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Scheduled EU Parliament's Vote on critical Resolution on Turkey ... vanishes mysteriously !

Written by ACM
Tuesday, 03 October 2017

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*Strasbourg/EU Parliament/Angelo Marcopolo/- Just After the German Elections (but still Before the Austrian a.o.), suddenly, an Expected, officially Announced, and even initialy Registered, EU Parliament's draft Resolution on the "Hot" Issue of Turkey, litteraly ..."Disappeared", out of sight, withOut Any clear Explanation, and Sine Die...


A very Critical MEPs' Debate on the Massive Oppressions inside Turkey and its provocative relations to Europe had been organized during the Last EU Parliament's full Plenary Session in Strasbourg, back on September 2017, i.e. shortly Before the crucial German Elections, (where Criticism on Ankara had Topped even the 2 Leading Candidates' TV Public Discussion around the ways to End Turkey's controversial and UnPopular EU bid), See : ... .


As it had been Decided, and officially Anounced then, in Conclusion of this Debate, a Resolution on EU - Turkey future relations would be Voted and Adopted during the Next EU Parliament's full Plenary Session in Strasbourg, i.e. on "October I".


This was even Registered at least in a Draft Agenda for the present Session, which, indeed, mentioned the Vote of a Resolution on the "Relations between the EU and Turkey", initially Scheduled for Wednesday, 4 October 2017, (according to EU Parliament's relevant Official Documents updated on 27 September 2017).

 

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But, suddenly, at the latest since a Subsequent Draft Agenda, Dated from Wednesday 29 September 2017, ... Any Mention (even the slightest) of that matter, ... Disappears from EU Parliament's new Documents !


I.e., obviously, Something happened Before EU Parliament's Plenary session's Opening Day in Strasbourg, on Monday October 2, and, therefore, Before and WithOut any Transparent, Public Debate about that Issue, (which was Not Mentioned at all during the previous regular Press Briefing of Monday early Afternoon, here).


+ Moreover, astonishingly, even several among EU Parliament's most Experienced MEPs, (questioned now by "Eurofora"), apparently Ignored what really happened with that, and why...


++ Surprisingly, even some Top MEPs, among the Leaders of mainstream Political Groups, said to "Eurofora" that it was Not at all certain that such a Resolution might, at least, pass for Vote at the Next, "October II" Plenary Session in Strasbourg, after two Weeks Time. Not even for a Much Later Date, f.ex. on November !

=> When such a Big Flagship "PackBoat" Issue suddenly Vanishes withOut any explanation, inside EU Parliament, and Contrary to previous Official Decisions, repeated more than bis (Comp. Supra), then, inevitably, Legitimate Questions are raised.

Notoriously, finally Anodynous, purely Verbal Criticism of Turkey, withOut any concrete Consequence on Ankara's controversial and unpopular EU bid, has been already Used, f.ex. Before the Recent Dutch Elections, with obvious aims :

Very Mediatic Declarations with a so-called "Criticism" of Turkey's policies, (and with  had a blatant Complicity by Ankara's Government, which multiplied Verbal Provocations, etc), had suddenly Surfaced, then, in the Netherlands, until its Governing "Liberal" Party and others Limited the Loss of Votes in the Elections, after which, ...Nobody spoke again about such matters...

Something Similar Surfaced also during the German Elections of September 24, when even the Socialist Candidate, former Long-Time MEP and f. EU Parliament's President Martin Schultz, in his TV Debate with Chancellor Angie Merkel, from the ChristianDemocrats/EPP, suddenly made a Spectacular "U - Turn", asking to "Stop" the EU - Turkey controversial and unpopular "Acession" Negotiations as such : I.e., a stance that Schulz had Never adopted before, despite many occasions, during his long EU career (i.e. practicaly since 1994)... Such a Move, perhaps, Limited the Loss of Voters towards the Right by the Socialists, who Otherwise, obviously Risked to Fall even Lower than 20%, at the "1O and something" category, (i.e. Similar to AfD's 13%), while the ChristianDemocrats/EPP, (Traditionally Sceptical against Turkey's EU bid) remained at least Steady on 33%+.

Nowadays, it might obviously be the on-going Coalition-searching Negotiations, including, in Addition to the CDU and Liberals, also the "Greens", who, this time, pushed at the forefrTurkish-origin and Turkey-Born Zem Ozdemir (an Initially "Socialist" fan, until a series of Financial, Sex, a.o. Scandals, which eliminated his initial Mentor, Rudolf Sharping on 2002, after, however, having pushed on EU's shoulders the Weight of Expensive and Clumsy, Problematic "A400M" Military Transport Airplane, backed mainly by Turkey and the UK).

In this and Many Other Cases, it's obvious tha the Medias of the Establishment are recently seeking to Boost the Impression of a lot of so-called "Good Turks", in Contrast with "Bad" Erdogan, as if some of them were pre-destinated to take over, in one way or another, after an eventual departure of Erdogan, in a possibe attempt to Limit the Turkish GeoPolitical and Cultural issue into a Merely Personal one, Open to any Opportunist Manipulation, at one or another moment....

But, then, at least, ...Austria (scheduled to Vote in National Elections on October 15) does not matter so much ?....

(../..)

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EUParliament: Fight v. Islamist Terror Attacks in EU/USA, + Debate on Secessionist trouble in Spain

Written by ACM
Monday, 02 October 2017

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 *Strasbourg/Angelo Marcopolo/- EU Parliament had to Handle Today a series of various "Hot" Topical Issues currently Challenging Europe, at the opening of its full Plenary Session this Week in Srasbourg, from Deadly islamist Terrorist Attacks in Europe and America, until Secessionist troubles in Spain, etc.


Concerning a Growing Series of Deadly Aggressions by ISIL Terrorists cowardly Targetting innocent and defenseless Civilian People, f.ex. by Knife or Vitriol Attaks in the UK, France and Canada, (including 2 Young Girls Murdered at Marseilles), but also the latest Gun Attack revendicated by ISIS in Dallas (USA) with 59 People Killed, Hundrends Wounded, the new EU Parliament's President, Italian ChristianDemocrat/EPP MEP Antonio Tajani, was adamant:


- "We (Europeans) shall Not Change our Way of Living", But "we will shall Keep Fighting, until we Defeat" Islamist Terrorism, he clearly stressed in an Official Statement, inviting also all MEPs to keep a Minute of Silence in Memory of the Tragic Victims.


But the Unanimity of All Political Groups of MEPs inside EU Parliament, on which was based President Tajani's above-mentioned Statement against ISIS' Deadly Terror, on the Contrary, did Not Exist, at least at the Beginning, as far as anOther, Different Topical Issue (which had also occured last Sunday) was concerned : that of Secessionist troubles in Spain :


Indeed, here, Various Positions were expressed among MEPs' Groups, Both about the Timing, the Heading, and the eventual addition of a Resolution, or not, of a possible EU Parliament's Debate on the recent events in Catalonia.


- To Sum up : Contrary mainly to some "Greens" and Euro-Sceptic "EFDD" MEPs, who asked for an Immediate Debate for Tomorrow, Tuesday, on the Contrary, most Other Groups wished to put that for Later-on, i.e. Wednesday. And, since EU Parliament had to Debate on the latest EU Heads of State/Government Summit in Tallin, on Digital Innovations and on Europe's Future, during Wednesday Morning, inevitably it was, finally, Decided to Fix that Debate for the Afternoon.
But the Biggest InFight, among MEPs, obviously was about the precise Wording of the Heading to give to such a Debate :


- Initially, some "Greens" and Leftists MEPs asked to Focus only on what they called, (in an obvious Unilateral manner) :  "Massive Police Violence against Peaceful Citizens in Catalonia" ...


- But the ChristianDemocrats/EPP, Socialists and Liberals MEPs preferred to speak about the "Constitution, Rule of Law, and Fundamental Rights in Spain, following the recent events in Catalonia" region. I.e. a quite more Balanced stance, Combining Both the Legal and Constitutional Rules in Spain, (according to which, a pro-Independence Referendum, accompagnied by notorious Threats for immediate Secession by the currently Governing Parties in Catalonia Region, was Illegal), as well as All Citizens' individual and collective Rights, (f.ex. vis a vis eventually DisProportionate use of Force by the Police, etc), as the President of the Liberals, Guy Verhofstadt, former Prime Minister of Belgium pointed out.


=> Such Explanations made even the President of the Leftist Group, German MEP Gabrielle Zimmer, to finally find an acceptable Compromise, Together with the Other 3 above-mentioned Group of MEPs (Comp. Supra).


+ Moreover, Leftist, as well as Center-Right EPP, Liberals and Socialists, as well as various Other MEPs, practically Agreed with the Explicit Demand made by a Spanish MEP, to Abstain from Voting Any Resolution at all, (Contrary to some "Greens" and EuroSceptic "EFDD" MEPs).


- This is a Crucial point in order to Face current "Threats to Break up my Country", Dramatically stressed, indeed, mainstream Spanish MEP Esteban Gonzalez Pons.


Indeed, those atypical, mainly Leftist Parties which have taken, since 2015, the control of Catalonia's Regional Governance, (even with a Minority of about 48%, because its Electoral System reportedly Benefits the Rural Areas where pro-Independence groups are larger than in the Cities, as mainstream International Media have noted), notoriously Threatened now to hold a Referendum for Independence due to be Immediately Followed by a Secessionsit Declaration, if its (even Relative) Majority might bring a "Yes" on 2017, (regardless of the fact Constitutional Court of the Country has already, officialy declared such an attempt to hold a Referendum like this, as "illegal").


In order to Avoid a Deadlock and/or Violent Clashes, Spanish Prime Minister Rajoy reportedly adopted a Preventive Strategy, consisting mainly in previous, Targetted Police Operations focusing on Confiscating Voting Lists, Ballot Boxes and Voiting Bulletins, as well as relevant Printing Machines, and Closing several Voting Stations, alredy from the Eve of the Crucial Date.


But the Secessionists have, apparently, managed to Trick at least a part of the Spanish Government, (probably some inside the Security/Intelligence services), by ... Hidding stocks of already Printed Bulletins of Vote, Ballot Boxes, etc. at the Other Side of the Borders, in France's Mountains, and they had also Prepared a special Digital Network System with Voting Lists, practically allowing anyone to Vote at Any Voting Station he might find, eventually, open...


=> So that, by the Addition of all such Factors, finally, on the Crucial Date of last Sunday, it had, practically, become almost Unavoidable to provoke some; more or less Violent Clashes, between Secessionists and pro-National Unity People, particularly the Police, who had clear orders to Prevent such an Illegal Vote, which obviously Threatened to Trigger Dangerous Secession in the few next days.


However, despite even that last-minute Trap, the Spanish National Authorities apparently managed to seriously Diminish the inevitable use of Force and Clashes which, almost Inevitably followed Afterwards ...
... at least Comparatively, f.ex., with what had happened, just a few years ago, back on 2014, when a controversial Government at Kiev (Ukraine) had done, in order to Hinder pro-Autonomy Dissident People at Eastern Ukraine Regions to Vote, precisely, at another controversial Popular Referendum :


>>> Then, it's even with Real Deadly Bullets, that Heavily Armed (and sometimes even Masked !) Gunmen, who had suddenly Invaded and forcibly evacuated several Polling Stations, Started also to Shoot against really Peaceful gatherings of People who were trying to Discuss with them, trying to convince them to let the Voters Free to cast their Bulletins in the Ballot Boxes, including by ... seriously Wounding at the Knee with a Bullet one of the Victs, who Bleeded on the road, and even ... Killing at least another Victim, afterwards found Dead near the Polling Station, (as several Converging Videos and Photos, Testimonies etc., immediately Published then at the Web, clearly reveal, f.ex. in Marioupol City, etc)...


Fortunately, Nothing Similar to what had happened then in Ukraine (which is a CoE's Member State, and EU Neighborhood Policy Partner, normally Obiged to Respect elementary Human Rights) did Not occur also Today in Spain.


F.ex. No Real Bullets Fired against Peaceful People, Nobody Killed, and Not even any Controversial ("Putchist" according to Dissidents) Violent Change of National Government in the Capital City of the Country concerned, after Bloody Killings from Both Sides, and very Brutal, massive Clashes, (etc), as it had notoriously occured in Kiev, back on 2014, Before that pro-"Autonomy" Referendum was organized by Dissidents, apparently Afraid of what had happened, just a few days before, by Suddenl Toppling their Elected Government through a Violent Popular Uprising, amidst Strange "Snipers" notoriously Killing People from Both Sides, apparently in order to Stir Conflict, (Comp., f.ex. : ....+ ...).I.e. something which Never Happened in Spain's Capital, Madrid... 


=> Not Wishing to abuse of too obvious Double Standards, an ovewhelming Majority of MEPs inside EU Parliament, finally decided, Today, to Limit  that Debate on Catalonia events in a Wednesday Afternoon Exchange between Heads of the Political Groups, withOut any Resolution.

(../..)

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Sarkozy and Merkel want deals with Obama on European Security at Strasbourg's NATO 2009 Summit

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In parallel but concording moves, EU Chair, French President Nicolas Sarkozy and German Chancellor Angie Merkel both invited this week US-President elect, Barack Obama, to discuss important deals breaking new ground on European Security during the NATO's 60 Years Anniversary Summit of Heads of State in Strasbourg, where Obama is expected to make his 1st visit to Europe as a President on April 2009.

Merkel focused mainly on smoother NATO - EU Defence and Security policy cooperation, while Sarkozy spoke about PanEuropean Security, associating both Russia and the USA, proposing to freeze missile and shields' deployement until an agreement is reached.

But both tackled some hard nuts to crack : Turkey's VETO against the participation of EU Member Cyprus to EU-NATO cooperation, and Russia's anouncement on deployment of missiles up to Kaliningrad, at EU's belly, in reply to USA's wish to set up missile shields in EU States such as Poland or Czech Republic, etc.


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- "Certainly...one of the points that we'll dicuss with the New US President", Barak OBAMA, "who will come f'or the 1st time in Europe as president, at the NATO Summit", co-hosted by France and Germany in Strasbourg, ""concerns, above all, the European Security and Defence Policy" (ESDP), and "the relations between NATO and its partners", with whom it should "work together", anounced earlier this week Merkel.

We must find "a reasonable and adequate concept to articulate NATO and European Security and Defense policy", because of a "series of practical issues, sometimes difficult to understand", but that "we must discuss".

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- "An example" of that is "the issue of Cyprus and Turkey", said Merkel, where Ankara raises problems "from Kosovo up to Afghanistan", as also CoE's chair, Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt recently observed in Strasbourg replying to EuroFora's questions.

- "We must do something to smoothen this problem for good, and not only on a case-by-case basis, laboriously negotiated each time". Here, we must find "a reasonable and adequate concept to articulate NATO and European Security and Defense policy", Merkel stressed.

- "With good will from all sides, it could and should be posible. Germany wants also to help on that". Otherwise, "the coming generations will not understand why it took Decades to do so". But, if we "don't even achieve that for Decades, this would be an Historic Failure !", the German Chancellor warned

- "I think that our American partners are increasingly realizing that", Merkel said, pleading for "a stronger European Security and Defence policy, with which, I believe, the Atlantic Security Partnership can also strengthen and solidify".

Meanwhile, USA is also due to take in 2009 a special status inside EU-led EUROCORPS, the European Army HeadQuarters, based in Strasbourg.

Merkel said that after meeting in Berlin with NATO's Secretary General, Jaap de Hoop Scheffer, earlier this week, precisely in order to "prepare NATO's Summit", scheduled for the beginning of April 2009 in Strasbourg.

Scheffe, knows well Strasbourg, since he chaired the CoE, as Holland's Foreign Minister, when he brokered a controversial deal precisely on Turkey and Cyprus about the implementation of ECHR judgements on Greek Cypriot displaced persons' houses and properties in 2003. He returned later at least once, for a WEO meeting at the CoE, where he precisely had highlighted such EU - NATO issues.

EU Commission's 2008 Report on Turkey has just observed that, on European Defense - Security policy, "Turkey continues to object to EU-NATO Cooperation which would involve all EU Member States". "This created Problems for EU-NATO co-operation in the context of Civilian ESDP missions, in particular in Kosovo and Afghanistan".
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 French EU Chair, President Sarkozy and Merkel are visiting Washington on Friday and Saturday for a Global G-20 Summit with current US President George Bush, on the sidelines of which are expected preparatory contacts with US President-elect Obama's entourage, even if himself might stay in Chicago until he takes over on January 21.

Before going to Washington, Sarkozy concluded today an UE - Russia Summit with Dmitry Medvedev, where they "spoke in length on PanEuropean Security" :

- As EU President, I proposed that we meet on mid-2009 in a framework such as OSCE's in order to set the foundations of a Future Pan-European Security, which would associate Russia and USA, and that, meanwhile, nobody speaks about deploying missiles or shields, which complicate the situation".

- NATO's Summit in Strasbourg-Kehl, on April 2009 is a perfect occasion to discuss with our American friends and to prepare a possible OSCE Summit for these issues f.ex. for June or July", Sarkozy concluded.

- We must all abstain from Unilateral measures" dangerous for Europe's security. "Russia only reacted to decisions taken by some other countries. But if they are ready to cooperate, we are ready to discuss. EU could be an intermediary", added Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, before going himself too at the Washington G-20 Economic Summit.

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