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European Union: Court of Justice Rules Member States Not Required Under EU Law to Issue Humanitarian Visas

(Mar. 14, 2017) On March 7, 2017, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) held that Member States are not obligated under European Union law to issue humanitarian visas to asylum seekers, because such applications fall within the scope of national law. (Case C-638/16, X and X v. État belge (Mar. 7, 2017), CURIA.) Facts of […]

European Union: Court Rejects Compensation of Commercial Banks over Greek Debt

(Feb. 8, 2017) In a decision issued on January 24, 2017, the General Court of the European Union determined that the European Central Bank (ECB) is not obligated to compensate commercial banks for losses they incurred in 2012 from the restructuring of Greek debt. The Court said that the ECB had not broken the law by […]

EU: New Rules Proposed to Curb Financing of Terrorism and Organized Crime

(Jan. 11, 2017) On December 21, 2016, the European Commission adopted several measures designed to fight terrorist financing and organized crime.  The measures, designed to create a strong, coordinated response to the issue of terrorist financing, result from the action plan against the financing of terrorism adopted in February 2016.  These proposals would be a […]

European Union/Georgia: Negotiations on Visa-Free Travel

(Nov. 11, 2016) The European Parliament, in the final stages of the integration process of Georgia into the European Union, called on the Council of the EU to start negotiations on a visa waiver for Georgia “without any further delay.” (Press Release, European Parliament, EP Urges Council to Open Talks on a Visa Waiver for […]

European Union: Ratification of Treaty of Paris on Climate Change

(Oct. 12, 2016) On October 4, 2016, the European Parliament (EP) ratified the Paris Agreement on climate change. The majority of the Members of the EP, 610, voted in favor of ratification, with 38 against and 31 abstentions.  (Aline Robert, MEPs Vote to Ratify Paris Agreement, EURACTIV (Oct. 4, 2016); The Paris Agreement, United Nations […]

European Union: Measures Adopted Following Brexit

(Aug. 8, 2016) Within days following the United Kingdom’s referendum vote of June 23, 2016, to withdraw from the European Union, the EU’s three main decision-making institutions — the Parliament, the Commission, and the Council — took actions in response, such as calling on the United Kingdom to start negotiations to leave the EU by triggering the withdrawal mechanism stipulated in […]

European Union: The Netherlands in Charge of EU Presidency

(Jan. 29, 2016) On January 1, 2016, the Netherlands took over the rotating Presidency of the Council of the European Union and will be in charge of the Council agenda for the next six months. (The Netherlands and the EU Presidency, Netherlands EU Presidency 2016 website (last visited Jan. 29, 2016).)  The 2009 Lisbon EU […]

European Union: Draft Directive on Collection and Transfer of Air Passenger Record Data

(Dec. 23, 2015) In the wake of the recent terrorist attacks in France, the issue of the collection of passenger name record (PNR) data from airlines and the transfer of that data to the appropriate national authorities of the Member States of the European Union has been revisited with a renewed sense of urgency. On […]

European Union: Proposals to Establish a New European Border and Coast Guard

(Dec. 18, 2015) On December 15, 2015, the European Commission adopted a proposal for a Regulation to Establish a European Border and Coast Guard (EBCG), designed to ensure shared European management of the external borders of the European Union. The proposal will establish a European Border and Coast Guard Agency (EBCGA), which will replace the […]