February 19, 2011
EU/US accused of cover-up on Kosovan organ trafficking. And that includes the UK. A Council of Europe investigator, Dick Marty, says that 'Europe is now unwilling to properly investigate the situation for fear of being exposed'. Marty also said that credible witnesses were reluctant to come forward to give evidence to EuLex, the EU team investigative team, because EuLex was in disarray and leaking like a sieve.
"If I gave [Eulex] the names of the witnesses I interviewed [as called for by the EU], their lives would immediately be under threat." Calling for an independent special investigation unit Marty added, "Europe is never going to accept that. Because it knows that my witnesses would really talk and reveal that a large part of the European politicians knew all along what was going on in Kosovo. Do you really think that Brussels wants to hear something like this."
Still so-so An investigation has shown that about a sixth of MEPs check in for work on a Friday in order to receive the £258 daily allowance before leaving almost immediately for the weekend. A third of MEPs turned up for work with luggage for the weekend. Conservative MEP Robert Sturdy and Labour MEP Peter Skinner were both filmed signing in and then arriving at the Eurostar in a chauffeur driven car, to catch the 8:29am journey to London. (Signing in, sodding off).
Playing at Space Cowboys I find it hard to believe this simulation cost only $15m.
Britain seeks guarantee on fiscal sovereignty Britain is trying to secure an opt-out on national budgetary frameworks including "new rules on public accounting systems, statistics, forecasting practices and many other stages in the budgetary process."
House of Lords criticises EuPol in Afghanistan "... after four years of work, around 70% of Afghan police cannot read or write and process basic paperwork, many ask for bribes to carry out day-to-day tasks, operate out of "desolate" huts and violate human rights. After completing their six-week-long EUpol course, 75% of them vanish."
A Conservative MEP questions the UK's continuing membership of the Council of Europe "This latest ECHR ruling has persuaded me that maybe it is time for the government to consider whether the benefits of full Council of Europe membership outweigh the costs. Is it really in our national interest to be part of this organisation. What benefits do we get and what would leaving actually mean?"
Council of Europe Anti-Torture Committee publishes a report on Malta. My first thought was why Malta? Why not, eg, Turkey? Then I flipped to the committee members page and saw that Turkey holds the current rotating chairmanship of the CoE.
How's your French? French Defence Minister: “We live in an unpredictable world and it would be irresponsible of the EU not to mutualise its forces. We need to encourage, push this process which does not move ahead spontaneously, we need to involve the UK, Germany, Spain, Italy, Poland.”
EU sued over India trade talks Advocacy group claims deal will be detrimental to farmers and will widen inequality. More HERE "... also accusing the Commission of violating transparency rules, and of favouring corporate lobbyists in the decision-making process."
EU does an Ireland on Portugal A financial rescue plan is already in place and expected to be called upon within the next few weeks. An unnamed "eurozone source" said: "Portugal is drowning. It's not going to be able to hold on beyond the end of March."
Austria under fire over 'free movement' EC commissioner Reding gave Vienna until the end of February to fall in line with EU regulations or face treaty violation procedures. Among the commissioner's criticisms was the fact that Austria's current law does not clearly define criteria for deporting EU nationals. While EU citizens were required to carry a proof of identity at all times, this was not the case for Austrians.
A call for 80-95% reduction in EU CO2 emissions below 1990 levels by 2050. Roadmap 2050:
How's your German? Taxpayers might be ultimately liable for shortfall in MEPs 2nd pension fund.
... and Spanish? EU gives 17m euros to Tunisia with another 258m euros in the pipeline.
MEPs call for "common standards" of prisoner care overseen by the EU's FRA
Security staff moved to other duties after armed robbery
Belgium 251 days without a government
In the press:
Osborne refuses to sign off EU's 2009 accounts
“Taxpayers face huge EU financial penalties if targets to reduce the amount of rubbish sent to landfill are not met”.
Ireland threatened with 3.2m euro fine for failure on farming directive
Britain's oldest Bitter under threat
UK Register of herbal medicine practitioners limits impact of EU directive
Cameron's new SpAd denies he's a pro-EU, anti-family nutjob
Posted by GoodnightVienna at 10:04 AM