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US calls out Russia for Macron campaign hack, even as France stays silent

US calls out Russia for Macron campaign hack, even as France stays silent

French authorities concluded in a 2017 investigation that those leaking Macron’s campaign emails ‘could have been practically anyone.’U.S. and U.K. authorities charged Russian state-backed hackers with having carried out a complex attack on Emmanuel Macron's presidential campaign in 2017, even as the French government has yet to officially attribute responsibility for the hack.Late on Monday, U.S. federal grand jury charging six Russian nationals with attacking thousands of companies, government institutions and other entities in the West, including Macron's campaign.Incidents range from...

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14h ago
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EU launches legal action against Malta, Cyprus over ‘golden passports’

EU launches legal action against Malta, Cyprus over ‘golden passports’

Brussels believes the programs, which enable investors to effectively buy EU citizenship, are unlawful.The European Commission on Tuesday launched infringement procedures against Cyprus and Malta over their so-called “golden passport” schemes.The programs, which enable investors to effectively buy EU citizenship, are against EU law, the Commission argued.In an official , the Commission said it “considers that the granting by [Malta and Cyprus] of their nationality — and thereby EU citizenship — in exchange for a pre-determined payment or investment and without a genuine link with [Malta and...

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10h ago
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EU countries sound alarm about growing anti-5G movement

EU countries sound alarm about growing anti-5G movement

Brussels needs to send a ‘clear and loud message’ about the benefits of the technology, 15 countries tell EU chiefs.A growing anti-5G movement is getting in the way of Europe's digital ambitions, 15 capitals warned the EU Commission as they called for a robust strategy to counter concerns about the new technology."It is clear ... that we are witnessing increasing activity of the anti-5G movement across the European Union," the group said, adding that recent attacks on telecom infrastructure "are not only a threat to the economy of the affected member states but hinder also the ability for...

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1d ago
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French terror attack highlights social media policing gaps

French terror attack highlights social media policing gaps

Experts say the issue lies with enforcement, not rules.PARIS — The shock caused by the in Paris has reignited the conversation in France about social media regulation.Several ministers called for stricter rules after it emerged that Samuel Paty, the victim, had been threatened on social media for showing caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad in his class before being killed on Friday.French representatives from Google, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok and Snapchat have been summoned to a meeting by the minister in charge of citizenship, Marlène Schiappa, on Tuesday morning. The companies...

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1d ago
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ECB’s Lagarde: Let’s discuss permanent EU debt

ECB’s Lagarde: Let’s discuss permanent EU debt

European Central Bank President Christine Lagarde wants EU governments to consider the possibility of making EU debt a permanent fixture of the bloc's economic response to crises, she told Le Monde in an published Monday.Speaking of the €750 billion debt-fueled response to the coronavirus crisis, which the European Commission is going to borrow on financial markets and disburse as grants and loans to EU countries, Lagarde said “this stimulus tool responds to an exceptional situation. We should discuss the possibility of it remaining in the European toolbox, so that it can be mobilized again...

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1d ago
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Coronavirus ‘tsunami’ nearing Belgium, health minister warns

Coronavirus ‘tsunami’ nearing Belgium, health minister warns

‘We no longer control what is happening,’ says Frank Vandenbroucke.Coronavirus transmission is slipping out of control in Belgium, Health Minister Frank Vandenbroucke said Sunday, on the eve of new restrictions in the country.“We are really very close to a tsunami,” he warned, . “We no longer control what is happening.”are set to take effect on Monday, including the closure of all bars and restaurants, and a midnight curfew nationwide.The health situations in Brussels and Wallonia are the “most dangerous in all of Europe,” Vandenbroucke added.Belgium as a whole has seen about 605 infections...

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2d ago
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After sidelining scientists, Europe plays catchup with new coronavirus wave

After sidelining scientists, Europe plays catchup with new coronavirus wave

Experts warned that infections would surge again but politicians resisted new lockdowns.Press play to listen to this articleVoiced byThe EU's national leaders pledged Thursday to follow "" in their coronavirus response. But after weeks of resisting that same expert advice, they're now chasing the wave.With infections skyrocketing, countries are reimposing containment measures every day. But the reluctant and haphazard responses across Europe show how political leaders spent the recent weeks in collective denial.Even now, they're bedeviled by the same quandary they faced since the pandemic...

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4d ago
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Armenia-Azerbaijan ceasefire proves short-lived again

Armenia-Azerbaijan ceasefire proves short-lived again

Both sides trade accusations as violence over Nagorno-Karabakh continues.The latest ceasefire between Armenia and Azerbaijan appears to have failed less than a day after it took effect, with both sides accusing the other of breaching the agreement.A new deal to pause the hostilities over the disputed region of Nagorno-Karabakh, , was supposed to begin at the stroke of midnight on Sunday. After , the conflict over the territory between the two countries broke into open warfare in recent weeks. Nagorno-Karabakh is internationally recognized as part of Azerbaijan, but controlled by Armenia and...

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2d ago
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China warns Finland against ‘interference’ in Hong Kong affairs

China warns Finland against ‘interference’ in Hong Kong affairs

Helsinki’s suspension of an extradition agreement with China risks harming relations with Beijing, embassy says.The Chinese Embassy in Helsinki issued a stern warning to Finland to stop interfering in the affairs of Hong Kong, after Helsinki suspended an extradition agreement with China over a draconian national security law.“Concerning the decision of the Finnish side, the Chinese side expresses grave concern and strong opposition,” the Chinese embassy said in  Friday. “Hong Kong is a special administrative region of China. Hong Kong affairs are entirely China’s internal affairs, and allow...

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3d ago
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Armenia and Azerbaijan declare new ceasefire in disputed region

Armenia and Azerbaijan declare new ceasefire in disputed region

After weeks of hostilities, ‘humanitarian truce’ in Nagorno-Karabakh set for midnight.Armenia and Azerbaijan on Saturday announced yet another ceasefire in their war over Nagorno-Karabakh, to begin at midnight.The foreign ministers of each country issued nearly identical brief statements from their respective capitals of and , declaring “a humanitarian truce as of October 18th, 00h00 local time” and citing recent efforts to intervene by France, Russia and the United States, the co-chairs of a long-failed international peace process carried out under the auspices of the Organization for...

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3d ago
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Commission tells countries to get ready to roll out coronavirus vaccines

Commission tells countries to get ready to roll out coronavirus vaccines

The Commission has bought the vaccines. Now it's countries' turn to get ready to use them.Back in June, the Commission to advance purchase possible coronavirus vaccines from companies. After months of , the Commission and is in the process of completing three others. ( that the Commission is negotiating on a seventh.)Issued on Thursday, the Commission's latest once a jab is approved by regulators and ready to use. Above all, a vaccine should be made free for citizens and given first to key populations, including health workers and vulnerable groups, the Commission said.Now, it's time for EU...

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Jillian Deutsch
5d ago
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Von der Leyen leaves EU leaders’ summit to self-isolate

Von der Leyen leaves EU leaders’ summit to self-isolate

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen walked out of a summit of EU leaders Thursday after finding out that a member of her staff tested positive for COVID-19.As the leaders were discussing Brexit, von der Leyen that "I have just been informed that a member of my front office has tested positive to COVID-19 this morning.""I myself have tested negative," the president wrote, adding that "however as a precaution I am immediately leaving the European Council to go into self-isolation."The European Council summit is being held in person in Brussels with extra precautions, including...

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Lili Bayer
5d ago
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EU slams Britain for trying to divide 27 in Brexit talks

EU slams Britain for trying to divide 27 in Brexit talks

Top EU officials warned the U.K. on Tuesday to stop trying to divide the EU27 in negotiations over a post-Brexit relationship, and said that Britain is running out of time to reach a deal.Germany's Europe Minister Michael Roth and Commission Vice President Maroš Šefčovič issued the warning to London after participating in a meeting to prepare for an EU leaders' summit in Brussels on Thursday and Friday.They accused London of repeatedly trying to "bilateralize" the talks and insisted unity among the 27 remains solid.Brussels and London had long envisioned that EU heads of state and...

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David M. Herszenhorn
Oct 13
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Cyprus to scrap passports-for-cash scheme

Cyprus to scrap passports-for-cash scheme

Cyprus is to suspend its controversial “Golden Visa” scheme, which gives foreigners a passport in exchange for massive investment in the country.Following a Cabinet meeting Tuesday, government spokesman Kyriakos Koushos to end the scheme was based on its "long-term weaknesses" as well as the "abusive exploitation of the provisions” within it.The scheme will stop on November 1, to be followed by discussions on a potential replacement investment scheme. A probe into the current scheme by the attorney general is underway.Cyprus has been under pressure for years to overhaul the Golden Visa...

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Nektaria Stamouli
Oct 13
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EU agrees sanctions on Russia over Navalny poisoning and on Lukashenko

EU agrees sanctions on Russia over Navalny poisoning and on Lukashenko

EU foreign ministers agreed on new sanctions against Belarusian strongman Alexander Lukashenko | Maxim Guchek/EpaPress play to listen to this articleVoiced byEU foreign ministers on Monday agreed on new sanctions against Russia over the poisoning of opposition leader Alexei Navalny and against Belarusian strongman Alexander Lukashenko.On Russia, Germany's "We have agreed to enact sanctions against individuals that we consider to be responsible for this violation of international law."Last week, Maas and his French counterpart announced in a that they would share with European partners...

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Jacopo Barigazzi
Oct 12
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As EU debates rule of law, Norway’s already making offenders pay

As EU debates rule of law, Norway’s already making offenders pay

In February, Norway froze €65 million in funding for a project supporting Polish courts and correctional facilities | Image via iStockPress play to listen to this articleVoiced byWhen it comes to policing the European Union’s values, a non-member has stepped into the role of enforcer: Norway.Norway voted to stay outside the EU in a 1994 referendum but remains closely aligned with the bloc, paying for access to the internal market with hefty grants to 15 economically weaker member countries under what is called the European Economic Area and Norway Grants system.But in recent years, Oslo has...

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Charlie Duxbury
Oct 9
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Fear and loathing (of Donald Trump) in the EU

Fear and loathing (of Donald Trump) in the EU

Illustration by Paul Blow for POLITICOPress play to listen to this articleVoiced byThis article is part of a special report, .“Let’s not panic,” said Wolfgang Ischinger, the former German ambassador to the United States. “The world is not ending, as some people seem to be suggesting.”Ischinger organizes the annual Munich Security Conference, the world’s premier gathering for world leaders to discuss issues of war and peace. But he was not referring to worries about nuclear Armageddon, terrorism or even the coronavirus pandemic. The palpable fear among Europe’s foreign policy elite is about...

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David M. Herszenhorn
Oct 9
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Brussels eyes bigger stick to take on Big Tech

Brussels eyes bigger stick to take on Big Tech

The European Commission is beefing up its weapons to take on Big Tech.Under Commission Executive Vice President Margrethe Vestager, the bloc's executive arm is planning to merge two major legislative initiatives on competition into a single text, EU officials told POLITICO.One is the so-called New Competition Tool, a market investigation tool that would allow competition enforcers to act more swiftly and forcefully. The other is a part of the , a new set of rules due to be unveiled in December for companies like Google, Apple and Amazon.Combined, the new powers would be known as the Digital...

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Laura Kayali
Oct 12
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EU and Africa team up on taxing Big Tech

EU and Africa team up on taxing Big Tech

For Europe, teaming up with African countries could help it counter the weight of Washington | Lionel Bonaventure/AFP via Getty ImagesPress play to listen to this articleVoiced byADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia — Europe and Africa are teaming up to push for international rules for taxing tech giants in the face of American skepticism and the economic crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic.The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development on Monday is set to publish technical blueprints on how to tax digital companies across borders, like Facebook, Amazon and Google. The plans consist of...

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Simon Marks
Oct 11
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German lawsuit accuses Amazon of breaking EU privacy law

German lawsuit accuses Amazon of breaking EU privacy law

Amazon faces a lawsuit in Germany over claims it has continued to transfer data to the United States using an invalidated transfer mechanism known as Privacy Shield, the claimants told POLITICO.The move comes after the EU's top court in July over fears of U.S. snooping, throwing billions of euros in transatlantic digital trade into a legal limbo.According to the lawsuit, which is due to be filed in a Munich court on Friday, Amazon continues to use Privacy Shield as a legal basis to send data to the U.S. in violation of the July ruling."The [Court of Justice of the European Union] has made...

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Vincent Manancourt
Oct 8
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UK probe finds no evidence that Cambridge Analytica misused data to influence Brexit

UK probe finds no evidence that Cambridge Analytica misused data to influence Brexit

The U.K. Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) found no evidence that digital marketing firm Cambridge Analytica and its affiliate SCL misused data to influence the Brexit referendum in 2016.In a to Julian Knight, the Conservative MP who chairs the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee, Information Commissioner Elizabeth Denham wrote that she "found no further evidence to change [her] earlier view that SCL/CA were not involved in the EU referendum campaign in the U.K."Denham also said she found no evidence of Russian involvement in the referendum.After the U.K.'s referendum...

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Laurenz Gehrke
Oct 7
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Survey: Trust in British government has dropped to lowest level in decades

Survey: Trust in British government has dropped to lowest level in decades

Citizens' trust in the British government has dropped to the lowest point in decades, according to a survey published on Thursday.The latest edition of the annual  found that in 2019 only 15 percent of respondents said they trust the government either "most of the time or "just about always," which the pollsters as the lowest level recorded in more than 40 years.Some 34 percent said they "almost never" trust the government. Plus, 79 percent said the U.K.'s system of governance could be improved either "quite a lot" or "a great deal," the highest level ever recorded by the survey.Brits also...

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Merlin Sugue
Oct 8
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Migration rubber hits political road

Migration rubber hits political road

A migrant child cries after Greek police deployed tear gas during clashes on the island of Lesvos | Angelos Tzortzinis/AFP via Getty ImagesCommission officials are holding their breath as the EU executive's long-awaited receives its first dose of political scrutiny.How to deal with migrants arriving at Europe's southern border is one of the most toxic issues among member countries whose entrenched positions have killed previous attempts to find a Continent-wide solution since the migration crisis in 2015. The numbers of arrivals are far lower now than they were at the height of the civil...

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Jacopo Barigazzi
Oct 7
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France and Germany accuse Russia in Navalny poisoning

France and Germany accuse Russia in Navalny poisoning

PARIS — France and Germany on Wednesday directly accused Russia of being behind the poisoning of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, making them the first two countries to do so.“France and Germany asked Russia multiple times to shed light on the circumstances of the crime and those who perpetrated it. No credible explanation has been provided by Russia so far," a joint statement by French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian and German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said Wednesday evening. “In this context, there is no other plausible explanation for the positioning of Mr. Navalny than a...

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Rym Momtaz
Oct 7
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Belgian milestone: A first trans minister and nobody cares

Belgian milestone: A first trans minister and nobody cares

Petra De Sutter, Belgium’s new deputy prime minister | Philippe Buissin/European UnionKatrin Hugendubel is advocacy director at ILGA-Europe.The of Petra De Sutter as Belgium’s deputy prime minister — the first out transgender minister in Europe — is a milestone.But what is perhaps even more meaningful is that it’s a milestone that went almost unremarked upon in today’s headlines.De Sutter has always been open about her trans identity and has never sought to hide that fact in her political career. Still, it was always clear that she is so much more than that identity.As a doctor and...

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Katrin Hugendubel
Oct 1
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