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Nov 19, 2013

EU studies options in tense countdown to Ukraine deal

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – European officials are considering a range of options to keep alive plans for Ukraine to sign an EU free-trade agreement at a summit in Vilnius on November 29, despite President Viktor Yanukovich’s failure to deliver on his commitments so far.

While Ukraine still has 10 days to meet calls for judicial reforms and other steps – including a resolution in the case of jailed former prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko – time is rapidly running out, and contingency plans are taking shape.

Nov 6, 2013

Research dispute puts EU-Israel ties under severe strain

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – As Israel looks warily west in the hope that the United States has its back in any conflict with Iran, it might do well to glance north and consider its relations with Europe too.

Over the past four years, ties between the European Union and Israel have grown increasingly fractious, with Brussels seldom missing an opportunity to lambaste Benjamin Netanyahu’s government for building settlements on occupied Palestinian land and restricting access to large portions of the West Bank.

Oct 31, 2013

Wall Street edges up in wake of Fed

NEW YORK (Reuters) – U.S. stocks edged up on Thursday, though trading was subdued a day after a Federal Reserve policy announcement that kept its stimulus plan in place.

While Thursday’s rise was modest, stocks were headed for strong gains in October. The Dow was up about 3 percent as the month drew to a close, while the S&P 500 was up about 5 percent and the Nasdaq rose 4.5 percent.

Oct 31, 2013

Exclusive: EU, IMF coordinate on Ukraine as Russia threat looms

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The European Union is in advanced discussions with the International Monetary Fund on providing standby financing to Ukraine should the country come under economic pressure from Russia later this year, senior EU officials have told Reuters.

Ukraine is expected to sign a free trade and association agreement with the European Union at a summit in Lithuania on November 28-29, as long as it meets remaining conditions, including releasing former prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko from prison.

Oct 31, 2013

EU, IMF coordinate on Ukraine as Russia threat looms

BRUSSELS, Oct 31 (Reuters) – The European Union is in
advanced discussions with the International Monetary Fund on
providing standby financing to Ukraine should the country come
under economic pressure from Russia later this year, senior EU
officials have told Reuters.

Ukraine is expected to sign a free trade and association
agreement with the European Union at a summit in Lithuania on
Nov. 28-29, as long as it meets remaining conditions, including
releasing former prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko from prison.

Oct 30, 2013

‘Nationalism and xenophobia’ on rise ahead of European elections

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso has warned against nationalism, xenophobia and racism ahead of European Parliament elections next year, when anti-EU and protest parties are expected to do well.

Opinion polls months ahead of the vote, which takes place in all EU countries on May 22-25, suggest candidates on the far left and far right will gain support as voters express frustration with Europe after three years of financial turmoil, contracting growth and job losses.

Oct 30, 2013

U.S. debt problems ‘casting global shadow’: EU’s Barroso

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Persistent doubts about the ability of the United States to resolve its debt problems are putting U.S. credibility in the world at stake, European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso has warned.

The White House won a brief respite this month when the Republicans backed down after a 16-day government shutdown. But the temporary fix has only pushed the problem into early 2014, with no comprehensive solution in sight.

Oct 29, 2013

EU’s Barnier: ready to compromise on bank resolution

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The European Commission is ready to compromise on how many banks will fall directly under the scope of the euro zone’s banking resolution authority, potentially limiting it to the largest institutions, the EU’s financial markets chief says.

Michel Barnier, the European commissioner for financial regulation and the single market, said he was prepared to compromise with Germany, which has strong reservations about a single resolution authority having the power to shut down small local banks, such as its ‘Sparkassen’ lenders.

Oct 29, 2013

Derivatives dispute harming EU-U.S. free-trade talks

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Ambitious plans for an EU-U.S. free-trade agreement may be put in jeopardy by Washington’s failure to finalize a deal coordinating rules in the $630 trillion derivatives market, the EU’s financial markets chief has warned.

The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission agreed in July this year on a common position with the European Commission and other global regulators that aimed to iron out differences in how they police derivatives trading worldwide.

Oct 25, 2013

Germany, France demand ‘no-spy’ agreement with U.S.

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – German Chancellor Angela Merkel demanded on Thursday that the United States strike a “no-spying” agreement with Berlin and Paris by the end of the year, saying alleged espionage against two of Washington’s closest EU allies had to be stopped.

Speaking after talks with EU leaders that were dominated by allegations that the U.S. National Security Agency had accessed tens of thousands of French phone records and monitored Merkel’s private mobile phone, the chancellor said she wanted action from President Barack Obama, not just apologetic words.

    • About Luke

      "Luke is bureau chief for Reuters in Brussels. The 25-strong, multimedia bureau covers all European Union issues, from trade, energy and agriculture to foreign policy, competition, regulation and economic affairs. The bureau is also responsible for coverage of NATO and Belgian politics, economics and company news. In his beat, Luke covers foreign affairs, with a focus on the Middle East and Iran, and writes about EU economic policy. He was previously based in London, where he was defence correspondent, and before that had postings in Jerusalem, Baghdad, Rome and Johannesburg."
      Joined Reuters:
      1997
      Languages:
      English, Italian, French, Spanish
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      Under Fire: Untold Stories from the Front Line of the Iraq War
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