German political crisis: what next?

The recent breakdown of the negotiations for a new coalition in Germany took many stakeholders by surprise. As our pre-elections report published in June had already predicted, putting together a coalition between the Christian Democrats, the Liberals and the Greens is a painstaking operation. The abrupt end of the preliminary talks showed that there are still limitations to political engineering, as the positions of the Greens on most issues are still too far from the ones of their potential coalition partners. Continue Reading

Two-speed Europe: EU politicians split over the strengthening of the Eurozone

The proponents and opponents of strengthening the Eurozone measured their forces during a series of votes that took place this week in the European Parliament on documents that set out the future of the European Union. This report maps the positions of the political forces across the continent, showing who backs and who opposes a two-speed Europe and the pooling together of financial resources. Continue Reading

Germany in 2017: how would a CDU-Greens-FDP government change Berlin’s policies?

At a time when Europe can count less on the US and the UK, Germany becomes more important than ever in determining the future of Europe, reason for which the entire continent now has a huge stake in Berlin’s future policy orientations. After an incredible 11 continuous years in government, Merkel’s CDU is poised to win yet another round of elections in September 2017. Continue Reading

Merkel’s MEPs want to consider sending arms to Ukraine, but leftist majority rejects

by Doru Frantescu

(https://twitter.com/dorufrantescu)

In a report of the European Parliament on the military situation in the Black Sea area, some Members supported an amendment asking that the possibility of providing Ukraine with defensive arms should be considered, if Russia does not fully implement the Minsk ceasefire agreements (par. 16/3).

This strong statement generated severe disagreements, dividing the MEPs on both ideological and national lines. Notably, all MEPs coming from Angela Merkel’s CDU/CSU alliance supported the idea. Conversely, all MEPs coming from their coalition ally in the German government, the social-democrats (SPD), voted against it. This development illustrates the deep divisions within the German Government on what the best course of action should be in response to the rising geo-political tensions on the EU’s Eastern frontier.  Continue Reading