Nieuws uit 2012

11 January 2012

De Jong: Kroes has a chance to show she has a heart

SP Euro-MP Dennis de Jong, in a letter to Dutch European Commissioner Neelie Kroes, has issued a personal appeal for her to protect social rights at the European level. Leaked draft documents from the Commission reveal that next week the Brussels executive will present a number of long-awaited proposals regarding the relationship between social rights and the internal market. ‘Last year a report from former Commissioner Mario Monti warned the Commission emphatically that unless social rights were improved support for the internal market would decline still further,’ De Jong recalls. ‘The Commission has clearly paid no attention to this warning.’

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11 January 2012

SP demands clarification on Greek defence purchases

SP Members of Parliament Ewout Irrgang and Harry Van Bommel, respectively spokesmen on financial and foreign affairs, have put a written question to the government regarding reports of extensive Greek arms purchases. Earlier this week German news magazine Die Zeit reported on the Greek Defence Ministry’s ambitious plans to shell out billions of euros on Leopard tanks, Eurofighter aeroplanes, submarines and frigates. According to the two MPs, if confirmed these plans represent a complete absurdity: a government that is receiving financial support from other members of the Eurozone and which is imposing extremes of austerity on the Greek people, should not be spending billions of euros of this aid on new military toys.

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10 January 2012

Candidate for EP President Martin Schultz shows no concern for democracy

Next week, the European Parliament will elect a new president. Although there are three candidates, Martin Schulz, currently leader of the centre-left Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats (PASD), the Parliament’s second biggest political group, is already openly referring to himself as the “future president”. SP Euro-MP Dennis de Jong explains: “For years the Parliament’s two major groups, the centre-right European People’s Party (EPP) and the centre-left PASD, have divided the most important functions between themselves to the exclusion of other parties. With the aim of putting an end to this cosy arrangement, I am actively supporting the independent candidacy of Diana Wallis. That Schulz is already calling himself the future president demonstrates that he does not take democracy within the EP seriously. Moreover, he has this week advised his own supporters to postpone a controversial resolution on Hungary which was to be put this week, because of pressure from the PPE. Such a person is not fit to be president.”

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2 January 2012

Why the realists are right and the federalists are wrong

Precisely ten years ago, on 1st January 2002, the euro became the only legal currency in the countries which had adopted it. We take a look back at the run-up to the single currency’s introduction, and look also at the links between the mistakes which were made at the time and the crisis in which Europe now finds itself.

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