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Opinion: Can Germany save Europe? | Instant News

(LR) Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez, Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa, Romanian President Klaus Werner Iohannis and German Chancellor Angela Merkel participated in round table discussions at the European Council in Brussels on 21 July 2020.


Timothy Garton Ash is a professor of European studies at Oxford University and a senior at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University.

One day, I had a dream. I dreamed that I was sitting on the beach in the summer of 2030 and looking back at how Germany saved Europe.

The German Chancellor has brokered a European recovery package after the COVID-19 crisis in 2020, with grants and large loans to help the crisis-hit southern European economy, by utilizing joint European loans. European central powers have maintained constructive relations between the European Union and post-Brexit Britain, helped Poles and Hungarians to maintain liberal democracy, disrupted Vladimir Putin seriously committed to a common European energy policy, used EU regulatory power to curb Facebook, formed a strategy together with China and setting a world-leading example of a new European green agreement.

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All this is done by Germany working as “first among equals” with other European countries, while partnering with the US and other democracies around the world. In realizing this ambitious agenda, he maintains a civilized and consensual political style and the support of his own people. An extraordinary achievement for Germany and Europe in the early 2030s. What a contrast to the early 1930s.

My reverie was boosted by € 1.8 trillion ($ 2.8 trillion), a seven-year European Union budget and a recovery agreement brokered by Chancellor Angela Merkel, along with President Emmanuel Macron and EU institutional leaders, at a marathon summit. The door to this breakthrough was opened by a major change in the position of Germany, accepting the need for fiscal solidarity.

With what Hegel called the artifice of reason in history, the long overdue German shift was triggered by a previously unknown Asian virus and the decision of the German constitutional court. The first even made it clear to the skeptical German public that South European countries were suffering from the disaster that no one could say was their own fault, and therefore deserved economic solidarity. Finally, the warning shot fired over the European Central Bank’s arc by the court made it clear that everything could not be left to the bank’s monetary policy. Fiscal response throughout Europe is also needed.

However, awakened from my reverie by the cold rain, something always provided by the British summer, I saw two great difficulties on the road ahead. Since Germany’s first unification, a century and a half ago, the country has been grappling with a problem which Kurt-Georg Kiesinger, a federal chancellor in the 1960s, called “a critical measure.” Henry Kissinger who is almost the same name: “too big for Europe, too small for the world.” The Kissinger formulation is very brilliant but not exact. Germany is too big to be another European country, but not big enough to be a hegemon even in Europe, let alone in the world.

So no matter how wise the German strategy is, it cannot be realized without a set of international partners. The giant challenges of climate change and the rise of China’s authoritarian superpower – leading to the early 21st century world like what Wilhelmine experienced in Germany until the early 20th century Europe – cannot be overcome unless you have the United States under President Joe Biden who returns to internationalism which is constructive. , and the strategic involvement of forces such as Australia, Japan and India. The European problem itself cannot be solved without active involvement not only from France and Spain, but also Italy (understandably busy with its own internal problems), Poland (currently peddling anti-German ancient lines), the Netherlands, and others. For foreign and security policy, Europe also needs British influence – which is a big strategic reason for Ms Merkel to try to mediate the Brexit agreement, which I believe still can done this fall.

Another unknown is German public opinion. On that face, there seems to be a solid pro-European international consensus in German society. But below that, there are some worrying trends. The outside world has always been wary of the possibility of a revival in Greater Germany, but what is more common is that of Greater Switzerland: leave us alone to be rich and free. German stereotypes about southern Europeans in the eurozone which undermined hard-working and pious North Europeans did not just disappear. The way election support is soaring for xenophobic nationalists Alternative to Germany (AfD) after the refugee crisis is an alarming sign. So well documented report right wing sympathy in military and security services. And contemporary German society has not gone through exams in difficult times at home.

As the former leading German ambassador to China, Volker Stanzel, argued, foreign policy could no longer be left to the elites. It needs to be anchored in a much broader process of education and democratic debate. That is all the more true because, because of the “critical size” of the country and the shadows of its past, the international role that needs to be understood and supported by the German public is historically unusual, difficult, and carefully balanced. For Germany it can never be a prancing hegemon, only a solid and skilled football midfielder that brings the whole team together – and doesn’t even get a round of applause to score. But sometimes the midfielder is a true hero of the team.

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Brexit talks will continue until October, Britain said – world news | Instant News

Britain and the European Union have agreed to continue discussing free trade agreements until October 2, UK chief negotiator David Frost said on Friday.

“The round of negotiations will take place in August and September, unless agreed otherwise between the parties,” according to a document posted by Frost on Twitter.

Round 7 on August 17-21 in Brussels, round 8 on September 7-11 in London and round 9 on September 28-October 2.


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US Not Defined For EU Europe, Algeria Safe Travel List | Instant News

It may be some time before Americans can look at the arrival signs at European airports when … [+] EU travel restrictions remain in the US as part of the alliance dpa / Photo of the rise of Covid via Getty Images Travel ban in Europe for Americans and most other foreigners is expected remain in place, while Algeria is removed from the EU’s safe travel list. As EU diplomats meet in Brussels to consider lifting – or re-imposing – travel restrictions on foreigners, Europe’s borders will likely remain closed to Americans and dozens of other countries around the world. . According to Reuters and Bloomberg, the bimonthly review of the closure of Europe’s external borders has not resulted in any other country being added to the safe list of tourists welcome to Europe. During the meeting, EU government officials called not to expand the “white list” of 12 countries and to withdraw Algeria. This brings to 11 the list of countries to which the borders of the Schengen zone are open. European diplomats informed journalists from several news organizations of the provisional decision, ahead of the official announcement scheduled for Thursday. The EU will recommend the decision to all governments, if it is “confirmed in writing by EU members,” Reuters reports. Euronews’ Brussels office also reported that Morocco could be removed from the list, but officials did not mention it to other media outlets. This is the second revision of the list since the bloc reopened to tourism. The timeline for the gradual reopening of borders and, in some cases, closure, has so far looked like this: On July 1, the EU opened its borders to visitors from 15 countries. (China was 15th on the basis of reciprocity, which was not). For the first time in almost four months, “non-essential” trips to Schengen countries have been possible. Then, on July 16, the European Commission updated its list of “safe countries” hosted in Europe. Not only did the list not grow, it shrank: to 13 countries. Serbia and Montenegro have been kicked out following the surge in Covid infections. Indeed, they have been added to the “red list” of countries still not welcome in Europe. Now the eliminated list of 11 countries will look like this if all members formally approve the decision: Australia, Canada, Georgia, Japan, Morocco, New Zealand, Rwanda, South Korea, Thailand, Tunisia and Uruguay. After that, members are free to do whatever they want from their borders. The EU only offers guidelines. However, most are sticking to the line, especially when it comes to keeping borders closed to Red List countries. Some have not opened their borders to the whole whitelist. China is still not included in the official tally, as the lifting of travel restrictions will not take place until it welcomes visitors from the EU. Europe faces second wave, infections among holidaymakers A man leaves the Corona test center at Cologne-Bonn airport. Free corona tests for returnees from … [+] risk zones have started at the airports of Düsseldorf, Cologne / Bonn and Dortmund. Next week they will be mandatory for all German holidaymakers and other EU residents arriving in Germany from high-risk areas. dpa / photo alliance via Getty Images The news comes as many EU countries battle a new spike in infections, leading to more internal border restrictions and quarantines. Several countries are stepping up Covid testing at airports and other border measures to tackle the threat of an increase in infections caused by returning vacationers. In France and Germany, these tests are mandatory for those who come from Covid hotspots. Epidemiological question: relative risk of Covid An empty beach in Algiers, the capital of Algeria. The Algerian government announced on July 26 a … [+] partial renewal of the lockdown measures for 15 days in 29 provinces to curb the spread of Covid-19. Algeria is experiencing a sharp increase in cases, at least three times the EU average infection rate per 100,000 population. Having similar or better Covid success is the benchmark for inclusion, or exclusion, from the EU Safe Country List NurPhoto via Getty Images The decision to add or remove a country from the list of countries with the green light for Europe goes to Covid data. The test is whether they have similar or better Covid infection trends than the EU. This is based on the number of new cases per 100,000 people in the past 14 days. When borders first reopened on July 1, the EU / UK average was 16. Today, in the midst of a resurgence, the average across the 30 EU / Schengen countries is about 20. This fell from 14.8 on July 22 according to the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control. ECDC data shows that the current range of countries in member countries starts at 1.8 in Estonia and climbs to 224 in Luxembourg (up from 183 on July 22). The average number of cases per 100,000 people in the United States is 284 as of July 27. In Algeria, this figure is 65, almost triple the EU average. Following the current update, the borders of Europe will remain closed to the rest of the world for at least two weeks. This is when the list is reviewed again, around mid-August. Not a lot of masks in Morocco. Moroccans gather at the Ouled Ziane bus station in Casablanca on July 26 … [+] to flee the city before travel restrictions to quell a new Covid outbreak come into force. AFP via Getty Images Related reading: Travel ban in Europe, here are 5 things Americans need to know Travel to Europe: EU borders remain closed to Americans and others – This is why tests at Covid airports- 19: United States in Europe, here’s what to expect United States: Trump Lifts ban on European and UK students – With visa you are welcome Travel to Europe: US is banned but here is 14 countries that can visit The health situation in the United States excludes America from being added to the list of … [+] countries for which its borders are open to tourism and other non-essential travel. And this situation can go on for a while. China News Service via Getty Images.

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Coronavirus: German officials say EU internal borders must remain open News | DW | Instant News

As concerns about returning tourists who bring COVID-19 to Germany increase, politicians and public health authorities discuss various options including extensive testing at the airport and travel warnings for high-risk areas.

However, closing the EU’s internal borders for tourist travel is not currently considered an option, officials say.

Senior Christian Democratic (CDU) politician Ralph Brinkhaus told DW on Tuesday that freedom of movement within the Schengen Zone that is free of EU border control is in the “DNA” of the European Union.

Brinkhaus added that reintroducing border controls were not being discussed at this time and that the closure of cross-border travel in the EU would depend on determining the “real threat.”

“You just have to wait and see how the situation will develop into autumn,” he said.

Read more: Coronavirus: How the German economy will face the second wave

There are no border controls for testing

On Tuesday, German Interior Minister Horst Seehofer said he opposed new border controls with German neighbors to conduct COVID-19 testing.

“I cannot imagine reintroducing border controls throughout Germany,” Seehofer said, citing “major political problems” caused by temporary border controls with France, Switzerland, Austria and Denmark.

“Those who support border control, are the same who will oppose them only a few days later,” Seehofer said, pointing out major disruptions in transportation of goods and cross-border travel.

However, Seehofer said that not testing at the border did not change Germany’s overall strategy to conduct more COVID-19 testing, and that the German government was debating legal reasons for ordering mandatory testing for returning from high-risk areas.

“The question is how we carry it out,” he told a news conference.

Read more: Opinion: Don’t take unnecessary risks, the second wave of coronavirus will definitely come!

Test at the airport

Both Seehofer and Brinkhaus said they supported a proposal by the German Ministry of Health for mandatory COVID-19 testing for people returning from high-risk areas.

Voluntary test centers are available at German airports in cities like Frankfurt and Cologne.

German CDU parliamentary leader Brinkhaus said that anyone traveling to high-risk areas needs to take “extreme caution” and it is important for returning travelers to take the initiative to be tested, especially if they develop symptoms of COVID-19.

“It’s also a matter of individual responsibility and not just law,” he said, adding that it was the job of politicians and the media to explain to everyone that the danger of COVID-19 had not yet passed.

Read more: COVID-19 tracks applications that prove to be complicated businesses throughout the world

Brinkhaus also said keeping tourism and travel going in the EU during COVID-19 depends on the member countries responsible for holding local outbreaks and individual citizens following preventative measures such as wearing masks and keeping a distance in public places.

“If there is an epidemic, it must immediately be resisted locally, and that is also the philosophy we have in Germany.”

“If we do something wrong, then we will go to the second wave which will also have economic consequences. That’s why we need to be careful,” he said.

‘Paid’ trips

Andrew Ullmann, a German MP with a Free Democrat (FDP), told DW that officials need to send a stronger message about the importance of physical distance and cleanliness, warning that the COVID-19 hotspot could “easily develop into a tsunami.”

“M.My impression is through Germany, and we have summer holidayn here now, Is that there are many people who like to forget and like to celebrate again,” he says.

Ullmann said that although the plague in Germany was largely caused by people who guarded parties and gatherings, and not from overseas travel, it was important to ensure that COVID-19 was not “imported” into Germany.

“We is a free society and free travel comes price and that price responsibility for yourself and your community. “


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COLUMN: Point-Counter: Germany will soon be controlling EU fragments Column | Instant News

When I was young, and first interested in politics and world history, I always wondered why Europe was not allied as the United States did and operated as a group. I also wondered the same thing about other parts of the world, such as the confederations in North America – Canada, the US and Mexico – and one in South America, creating their own groups.

It amazes me, now that I’m old, things might slowly happen. Moreover, as a group, European countries at that time were almost the same as us in number and population, and not much was left behind in industrial production and trade. I was happy when I finally saw the EU form, and heard the countries begin to speak with one voice. Of course, like others, I don’t know what it means to form Europe into the EU for member countries or the world.

Problems began to form at once, when ministers in Belgium began ordering member states to do things that were contrary to the culture and customs of their nation. Countries are forced to take immigrants from other parts of the world, many of whom refuse to integrate in any way, creating small pockets of their own foreign divisions.

Government orders and laws made by individual countries are overwritten and counterbalanced, while ever increasing “contributions” are demanded from rich countries – mostly Germans – to pay for outrageous pension plans and glasses in poor countries. Can you say Greek? As a result, Germany began to control many things. After being forced to conquer Germany twice in the first half of the 20th century, other European countries would never let Germany control them without a fight.

Britain specifically rejected foreign EU intervention into its internal politics and business affairs, and began to slowly withdraw from the European Union, which culminated in a total break last year. Other countries are re-evaluating their involvement with the EU, and some are also slowly withdrawing from letting the EU dominate them.

My suspicion is that in the long run, only poor countries – Greece, for example – will live and continue to draw life from Germany, while others – such as France, Italy and Switzerland – will map their own paths. In 10 years, the EU will have fewer Western European countries, more Eastern European countries, and will still be controlled by Germany, because those countries are trying to get protection from the Russian Bear to the East.

Jonathan C. Jobe, from Crescent Valley, is a retired educator and a US Air Force veteran.


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Germany, France benefited most from the EU recovery agreement | Instant News


Only France and Germany will get more funds from EU coronavirus recovery funds based on the agreement of EU leaders last week, Bruegel claimed.

Italy, Spain and Poland – large beneficiaries of the European Commission’s initial proposal – will lose a total of € 21.9 billion ($ 25.6 billion) compared to what was originally allocated, while Germany and France will benefit together € 20.8 billion more in the form of grants, according to calculations Zsolt Darvas, a senior researcher in the economic policy think tank.

Estimates show that France and Germany have managed to get a piece of cake that has shrunk far larger during budget negotiations by presenting themselves as deal-breakers or mediators in the conflicts of Mediterranean countries and camps called the Frugal Four.

Southerners vs Frugals

EU heads of state and government reached an agreement last Tuesday on the bloc’s budget after four days of intense negotiations.

The southern states hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic called for EU solidarity to reduce the economic crisis, but the so-called Frugal Four – a wealthy group consisting of Austria, the Netherlands, Sweden and Denmark – insisted on budgetary discipline.

The leaders agreed on a compromise of € 1.82 trillion spending for the period 2021-2027 which included a € 750 billion recovery instrument to help re-launch the European economy after the COVID-19 crisis and the bloc’s usual budget.

The agreement significantly changes the European Commission’s original proposal on a € 750 billion package.

On the one hand, the ratio of EU non-refundable grants and loans has been changed. The total amount of the grant has been reduced from € 500 billion to € 390 billion, while loans have grown from € 250 billion to € 360 billion.

The agreement also revised the methodology for the distribution of grants among member countries, partly replacing the unemployment criteria to the loss of real GDP to allocate grants from 2023.

Most of Germany, Hungary and the Czech Republic are asking for this change, arguing that unemployment data from the 2015-2019 period cannot accurately reflect the impact of the 2020 economic crisis.

“We cannot be punished for being successful,” Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babis told a summit of leaders, referring to the fact that his country had one of the lowest unemployment rates in previous years.

His counterpart from Hungary, Viktor Orban, complained in the meantime because he was treated unfairly compared to countries with higher incomes.

Winner of Germany, France

Ironically, calculations based on the final agreement show that relatively low-income Eastern European countries will benefit less from the new scheme, while Mediterranean countries that are barely affected will receive limited grants.

“This change (…) reduces the enjoyment of low-income people in [European] “The Commission’s proposal, and benefits large countries and countries that suffer greater losses in GDP due to a pandemic,” Darvas said in his analysis.

Only Germany and France will get more from the overall recovery fund, respectively € 13.4 billion and € 7.4 billion.

Three big winners from the previous proposal will benefit less. Italy, Spain and Poland can each expect € 1 billion, € 9.5 billion, and € 11.4 billion less than the recovery package.

According to estimates, Hungary and the Czech Republic will receive € 2.4 billion and € 3.2 billion respectively.

However, Italy (€ 84.8 billion) and Spain (€ 71.2 billion) remain the largest beneficiaries of EU recovery grants, based on the expected support from the EU budget.

In total, France can count on € 50.66 billion in recovery grants in the next seven years, and Germany might get € 47.2 billion.

Poland must use € 26.82 billion in EU support, while Hungary and the Czech Republic can expect € 6.09 billion and € 5.69 billion respectively.

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Brexit: After the failure of the recent talks, Merkel Germany reprimands the British government | Instant News

Amid ongoing trade and security talks with Britain, German Chancellor Angela Merkel has called on the government led by Boris Johnson to show more ‘realism’ during negotiations. As reported, Merkle’s statement came after Michel Barnier gave an update to ambassadors from 27 member countries.

Read: British lawmaker criticizes government over lack of probes manifesting into Russia’s role in Brexit

Germany is not happy with stalled negotiations

The German Chancellor’s comments were a blow to Downing Street who reportedly hoped Merkel and other leaders would assist in negotiations that were practically stalled for months. The latest talks between EU negotiators and their British partners ended on July 23 in which the two parties were unable to decide on the outline of Britain’s divorce agreement with the European Union.

According to the report, Barnier told the gathered leaders that an agreement with Britain this year was very ‘impossible’ and added that the European Union would be open to reviewing some of the problems next year in the hope that a separate agreement could be signed.

Read: UK chief negotiator says ‘gaps’ remain in Brexit talks

The two main areas that were reported to have caused problems in negotiations were access to the European Fishing fleet in British waters and reciprocal guarantees that ensured that no party could reduce the others by lowering regulatory standards or providing unfair subsidies to the industry.

Eight EU member states with the greatest interest in fishing have repeatedly explained to the rest of the bloc that they will not accept any agreement without access to fisheries.

The British ‘don’t understand’ about Russia’s role in Brexit

Earlier, British lawmakers accused the government of “lack of curiosity” when it came to digging deeper into allegations surrounding Russian interference in British politics, especially the Brexit election.

According to international media, the Parliamentary Intelligence and Security Committee has long awaited its report, detailing the events of the 2016 Brexit election should explain more about the problem but citing a lack of information, the committee said it could not reach concrete conclusions. .

Read: UK Tries New Campaign To Prepare Public For Brexit

Read: UK Tells Businesses To Prepare For Brexit Transition When Launching Information Campaign


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EU countries agree on coronavirus standards for air travel, Germany said | Instant News

FILE PHOTOS: Passengers wearing protective masks sit on planes at Sharm el-Sheikh International Airport, after an outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19), in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, 20 June 2020. REUTERS / Mohamed Abd El Ghany / Photo File

BERLIN (Reuters) – European Union countries have agreed to general hygiene standards such as social distance and wearing masks on planes and at airports to help curb the spread of the new corona virus, German Transport Minister Andreas Scheuer said on Thursday.

“I am pleased that the German proposal was accepted by my colleagues at the European level and that we can agree on this uniform standard,” Scheuer said at the European aviation conference.

Agreed measures include mouth and nose protection for six-year-old passengers and social distance at the airport during security checks and check-in. High fresh air quota on aircraft must be guaranteed and information must be available in several languages.

However, the middle seat does not have to stay free on the plane.

The joint regulation fulfills at least some of the requests made by airlines because various standards have caused confusion.

The German transport ministry said agreement was reached by officials and has not been officially approved by ministers.

Reporting by Markus Wacket; Writing by Madeline Chambers; Editing by Mark Potter


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European Union Barnier says Britain’s position on making trade deals ‘impossible’ | Instant News

FILE PHOTOS: Michel Barnier, head of the EU Brexit negotiator, attended the start of the round of post-Brexit trade agreement talks between the EU and the UK, in Brussels, Belgium on 29 June 2020. John Thys / Pool via REUTERS

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – European Union chief negotiator Brexit said on Thursday that Britain did not show a willingness to break the deadlock in the same field of play and fisheries problems, making sealing a new trade agreement impossible.

“With its current refusal to commit to conditions of open and fair competition and to a balanced agreement on fisheries, Britain makes trade agreements – at this point – impossible,” said Michel Barnier.

He added that as long as London’s position on these two core issues remained unchanged, there was a risk of failure of negotiations and disunity without agreement between Britain and the 27-nation bloc by the end of this year.

Speaking after this week’s negotiating round in London, Barnier said there was no progress at all in the matter of ensuring justice in state aid.

“The time for answers is fast running out,” he said at a press conference in London, referring to the five months remaining before the end of the UK transition period since officially leaving the European Union at the end of January.

“If we don’t reach agreement on our future partnership, there will be more friction.”

Barnier noted some progress on lateral issues this week but said the European Union would not seal an agreement that would damage the fishing industry and noted that the two sides were still “far away” from each other with only a few weeks to go.

“We will not accept to pay bills for British political choice,” he said.

Speaking separately in London on Thursday, British Brexit negotiator David Frost said he thought it was possible to seal the deal in September.

Reporting by Gabriela Baczynska and John Chalmers; Editing by Andrew Cawthorne


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The euro is in trouble because a European Union fund agreement has pushed PM Conte | Instant News

ROME, July 22 (Reuters) – Italy’s euro euro appeared to be on shaky ground Wednesday after the European Union approved a massive stimulus plan to help economies affected by the corona block virus, with Rome set to receive large sums of money.

Rome expects to get 209 billion euros in grants and loans from the Recovery Fund worth 750 billion euros ($ 869 billion) approved by the bloc on Tuesday after a four-day marathon meeting.

In parliamentary debates about the agreement, several lawmakers criticized the League and accused anti-EU allies across the continent of acting against Italy’s national interests by opposing an unprecedented stimulus scheme.

“If there is something good for Italy we are all happy, but we will see,” Matteo Salvini, chairman of the right wing, the European League told Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte in parliament, after warning that the recovery funds could be “fraud” ”

Senator Julia Unterberger, from a small SVP party fighting for a German-speaking minority in Italy, told Salvini that euroceptics abroad said the recovery fund was a boon for Italy to harm northern taxpayers.

“Eurosceptics needs to clear their minds. Either the recovery fund is a big scam or it’s a gift for Italy and a scam for economical countries, “he said.

The deal was announced after heated discussions, with Italy often fighting with a group of ‘thrifty’ northern countries, including the Netherlands, who want to base packages on loans rather than grants that cannot be paid back.

Alberto Bagnai, a spokesman for the League’s economy, said he did not find in European Union documents any evidence that Italy would get 209 billion from these funds.

The Recovery Fund has helped Conte, who heads a coalition of the anti-establishment 5-star Movement and the center-left Democratic Party, overturn widespread skepticism in Italy that he can reach a lucrative agreement.

Conte, who has no party affiliation, is the most popular Italian politician with approval ratings above 50%. The league is the most popular party with 25%, but has lost support since leaving its coalition with the 5th Star last August. ($ 1 = 0.8630 euros) (Reporting by Angelo Amante and Giselda Vagnoni; Editing by Gavin Jones and Hugh Lawson)


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