Since July 1st, Croatia’s tenure as the newest member state on the European Union has been overshadowed by an open confrontation with Brussels over Zagreb’s application of the European Arrest Warrant (EAW). Three days before official entry into the EU, the Croatian Parliament adopted changes preventing the extradition of anyone suspected of committing a crime before August 7, 2002. Unofficially known as Lex Perkovic, in reference to Josip Perkovic, the former head of Croatian intelligence, whose extradition is being sought by Germany for his involvement in the 1983 assassination of a Croatian dissident. Croatia has received 23 extradition requests from other EU nations, dating back before 2002, that fall under the European Arrest Warrant Framework Decision.
By Caitlin Del Sole, European Affairs Editorial Assistant
The European Union is becoming a prime arena for the latest tussles between two U.S. technology giants Microsoft and Google. With Google and another internet browser competitor Opera as whistle blowers, the EU competition authority has issued Microsoft a €561 million fine for failing to adhere to its 2009 settlement with Brussels.
European Union Justice Commissioner Viviane Reding is proposing draft legislation that would require state owned companies to name women to 40 percent of seats on boards by 2018. According to the European Commission women hold only14 percent of board member positions and 3 percent of board president positions in Europe’s biggest companies, despite the fact that around 60% of all European university graduates are female. “I do not accept the argument that there aren’t enough qualified women to fill supervisory boards,” Reding said. “The pool of talent is there. Companies should make use of it.”
The EU has made more headlines in the American media this year than perhaps at any time in its history. With markets and governments jittery about the future of the EU single currency, the euro, there has been a flurry of EU summits peppered with seemingly endless talks on bailout terms and treaty changes. And the future of the EU has been in play.
On September 18th, The European Institute hosted a breakfast discussion with Rolf Einar Fife, Director General of the Department of Legal Affairs at the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. As the chief Norwegian negotiator of the breakthrough 2010 agreement with Russia on maritime boundaries in the Barents Sea and Arctic Ocean, Mr. Fife explained the process of negotiating agreements for resolving competing claims on Arctic resources and stressed the importance of the International Law of the Sea treaty as a “rule book” for governing the Arctic.
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