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New Europe Print Edition Issue 1050

New Europe Print Edition Issue 1050

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New Europe Print Edition Issue 1050
New Europe Print Edition Issue 1050

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Published by: New Europe Newspaper on Sep 21, 2013
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Year of Publicationnumber 105022 - 28 sePtember, 20133.50
he European Commission Vice President, Joaquín Al-munia, delivered a blow to sep-aratist movements across Europe, say-ing that breakaway regions or countries would not automatically retain their EUstatus should they effectively secedefrom the union, through their with-drawal from existing member states.Speaking on 16 September, theSpanish commissioner said “if one partof a territory of a member state decidesto separate, the separated part isn't amember of the European Union,” dur-ing a conference in Barcelona, the capi-tal of Spain's Catalan region.In recent years, Catalonia has seenit's own independence movement swellin numbers, and Almunia's remark's were clearly meant as a signal to the re-gion, which is keen to break away fromrule by Madrid.However, despite the apparent re-luctance by the European Commissionto support independence movementsin members states, it is still keen to em- brace enlargement.On 17 September, commissionpresident, Jose Manuel Barroso, saidthat Albania could be granted candi-date status – the point at which formalnegotiations to become an EU mem- ber can be opened – by the end of the year. On 1 July this year, Croatia was welcomed as the 28th member of theEU. Almost immediately, the country  became embroiled in an argument withBrussels over its application of the Eu-ropean Arrest Warrant. The EuropeanCommission has levelled proceedingsagainst the country. On 18 September,it threatened to withhold €80 million of funding for the country until the matteris resolved.Until now, the commission has been reluctant to directly address theissue of countries or regions voting toleave the union. However, recent com-ments by a senior commission spokes-person seemed to back Almunia's as-sessment of the situation, saying thatthey are “in line” with the commission'sposition, and legally, a breakaway region would not be covered by the existingtreaties. The comments by Almuniahave led to speculation that there is se-rious concern about possible Catalanindependence in EU circles. This issomething officially denied by Brussels, which places this as a matter for indi- vidual countries.The comments also come in thesame week that marks a year to the in-dependence referendum in Scotland, which will be held on 18 September2014. Speaking to New Europe, Scot-tish National Party MEP, Alyn Smith,played down fears that this would alterthe outcome of the vote. Instead, he wasconfident that the debate will pick-upover the next twelve months, and resultin an independent Scotland.The MEP said that his party, whoremain pro-EU, want an independentScotland to be part of the EU.
Georgia bringing in deep democracy 
Activists calling for the independence of Catalonia, currently a region of Spain, form a human pyramid during a protest on 11 September in Perthus,southern France. Independence-seeking Catalans marshalled their forces fora 400-kilometre (250-mile) human chain in a bold push to break from Spaindespite fierce opposition from Madrid. |
Georgia is introducing deep democracy inits institutions says their Justice Minister TeaTsulukiani, who previously spent a decadeas a Senior Lawyer at the European Court of Human Rights. “This government will leaveas its legacy a European democratic systemthat will be impossible to undo,” said Tsuluki-ani. It is “a system will survive any Minister orpolitician,” she added. The minister was vis-iting Brussels before Georgia’s Association Agreement with the EU is expected to besigned in November. Speaking to New Eu-rope, Tsulukiani said, “The very first day wecame to power last year, we didn’t want to dothe same as the previous government, whodismissed judges after the Rose Revolution.”
SECUITY Page 09ENEGY Page 28
Page 07
 Act. React. Smacked.
 We showed the information campaign for theEuro elections to some Mad Men, experiencedadvertising gurus. They were shocked at justhow poor and information free the informa-tion campaign was.
'Hit me,but listento me’
Chizhov talks Syria,energy 
Chinfocu onCntrl AiEU ndupdtd diitlliltion
EU: Breaking Bad
(Page 3)
Croatia OK: Scotland, Catalonia out
22 - 28 September, 2013
Sweden to paythe “no” price
Editorial p. 2
Shell to developSiberian eld
p. 13
Munich Re networth boost up
Reinsurance giant Muenchner Rueck (MunichRe)saiditsdrivetobolsteritsnetworth was going faster than originallyplanned,adevelopmentcomingparalleltotheresurgenceofthecompany'sshareonstockmarkets.
p. 16
OEIAG sellsVoest shares
p. 17
Russia to arrangeSukhoi Log sale
p. 39
Azerbaijanunfolds economy
Commission strives toretain power in Constitution
Now what after the Cancun failure?
heEuropeanCommissioncalled for changes to bemadetothedrafttextoftheplanned EU constitution,withCommissionPresidentRomanoProdiwarningthatthebloccouldface"seriousproblems"ifchangeswerenotadopted.CallingtheIntergovernmentalConference(IGC)startinginRomeonOctober4toavoidsettinginstoneitsprovisions,Prodisaid:"TheConventionhastakenusalongwayalongtheroadtoaConstitution.Now,theIntergov-ernmentalConferencehasthepoliticalresponsibilitytomakesomeimprove-mentstotheConvention'stextsothatEuropecanworkeectivelyanddemo-cratically".Prodi also said in a statementissuedinBrusselsthatiftheEuropeanCommissionwastobeeectiveandcredibleitmustincludeafullrepresen-tativefromeachofthefuture25EUmemberstates.Thedraftconstitutioncalledforareductioninthesizeofthecommission,whichmostEUmemberstateshadrejected."IcanimagineasituationwhereGermanyhasnovotingright,"Prodisaid.TheCommissionalsocalledonEUgovernmentstoconsidermajorityvot-ing,whichwoulddoawaywiththecur-rentrighttonationalvetoes."Itisnotthecommissionthatsuers(fromthesevetoes)butthecitizens,"saidProdi.Commentingonthesubject,Commis-sioner Antonio Vitorino said: "AnationalrightofvetowillspellparalysisfortheenlargedUnion.Nationalhorse-tradingneverbringsgoodEuropeandecisions.Majorityvotingisparticular-lyimportantforthenextroundofbud-getarynegotiations."
New Europe
Estonianods, Latviafollows
Sixty-sevenpercentofEston-ianvotersonSeptember14backedtheircountry'sentryintotheEuropeanUnionandapproved a constitutionalchangetomakeitpossible.About33percentofvotersopposedtheentry,electionocials said when theyreleasedprovisionalresults.Estonia,along with nineothercountries,istoociallyentertheEUonMay1,2004.The67percent"yes"resultfellshortoftheprojected70percent"yes"vote.TheEuro-peanCommissioncongratu-latedEstonialastMondayonitsdecisiontojointheEU.European CommissionerRomanoProdisaidinapressrelease issued in Brussels,"yesterday'sdecisionclearlymarksEstonia'sreturntoitsrightfulplaceinEurope".In a related voting theprospectofEuropeanUnionmembershipfacedatenthreferendumlastSaturdayasLatviansdecidewhetherto join the 15-nation block.Latviawould,intheeventofapositive result,join othercountries who have voted"Yes"inbuildinga25-nationEuropeansuperpower.
Romano Prodi,President,EuropeanCommission
Prodi reiterates commissioners for all member states
Ukraine, EU unveil planto strengthen relations
kraine and the European Commission will soon startwork on an Action Plan to bring Ukraine closer to theEuropean Union, to be ready by spring next year, the Euro-pean Commission member in charge of EU enlargement hassaid.Commissioner Guenter Verheugen told reporters thatUkraine's remaining an independent, politically stable andeconomically developing country serves the EU's strategicgoals. He was speaking after negotiations with UkrainianForeign Minister Kostiantyn Hryshchenko, who said anagreement was reached at the talks to have more contacts inBrussels."We foresee a very active dialogue at all levels, includingthe highest level," Hryshchenko said. "I believe that Ukraineis facing practical European prospects, which to a consider-able extent depend on us as well. It was extremely importantfor me to hear from the high representative of the EuropeanCommission that these opportunities are open to us," headded.Verheugen also said Ukraine's plan to enter a commoneconomic space with Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan mightsignicantly inuence its relations with the EU.
p. 40
Advertising is all about location, location, location
The Commission president was promising a com-missioner for each member state, a move that 10 years later is looking a little... brave. Now we’re figur-ing out how to reduce the number. But there was aquote to remember, “I can imagine a situation whereGermany has no voting right,” Prodi said. Who can imagine that now? In reality, the questionis, does any country but Germany have a votingright?Two thirds of Estonians voted for EU membership, while the Swedes decided not to take a chance onthe euro. Ukraine and Europe were working on adeal, but at least the EU looked like a model of ef-ficiency compared to the WTO, whose record of inconclusive meetings continues.
 n e  1 0  Y e A  R  S  A GO
Pavlos Fyssas was murdered in Greece on 18 September.He was a musician and noted left-wing activist. He was killed by a man who admitted to be a member of the far-right GoldenDawn ; which has brazenly adopted the apparel and tactics of the 1930s. They are not simply a neo-Nazi organisation – they represent Nazism reincarnated.Like Jobbik in Hungary, they are not simply a thuggish, mar-ginal movement so easy to dismiss, they are an organised party, whose uniform – and, yes, they adopt the clothes and tactics of the past – is an obvious visual indicator of their political views.They have seats in the national assembly, and have their eyes onreturning candidates to the European Parliament in May next year. With the general rise in populist, extremist, and perhapsmore pertinently, anti-political feeling in Europe right now (es-pecially in economically marginal countries like Greece), therise of parties like the Golden Dawn makes some kind of sense.It used to be a crass generalisation to accuse someone of being“a Nazi” if they had vaguely right-wing views, but in certain,newer, cases it appears that has become the case. It is as if thefamous maxim by George Santayna has horrifically come true,“those who cannot remember the past are doomed to repeat it.”It seems that the past has been forgotten; not just in terms of the longer historical view of European wars, but also in the factthat the post-war ideal that brought about European integrationin the first place, and which stemmed from a desire to escapethe kind of horrendous political ruptures that divided the con-tinent, should be put t an end. Sadly, there is an upsurge in theopposite feeling.Greece and Hungary are the most visible examples; but otherillustrations exist. In the Netherlands, for instance; in Denmark and Finland also. The National Front in France is already mak-ing moves to secure a political group (and with it, therefore,more speaking time and funds) in the European Parliament.They crave respectability. Sadly, there are those who are seem-ingly only too willing to give it to them.There has been some talk about the Greek government mov-ing against the Golden Dawn. Maybe this is the, for want of adifferent cliché, the smoking gun. The fears are genuine fromthe political establishment; that the party (which mobilises lo-cal support horribly efficiently, hence their ongoing recent suc-cess). But without a willingness to engage in a proper politicaldebate, the threat is useless. The current political establishment– and Greece should not be signalled out by any means – is not willing to do this. It would only expose their own lack of ideas.On a local level, this happened in Italy with Beppe Grillo, andthat didn’t last long, you can only stretch a joke so far. But par-ties like the Golden Dawn, Jobbik, True Finns and the rest, arenot a joke. As the murder of Pavlos Fyssas expose, there agendais not political engagement but murderous contempt for thecurrent system.The current system is flawed. But murder is no solution. Ban-ning political parties is one solution, but maybe, and this wouldrequire a huge effort on behalf of those in power who quiver atthe thought of rhetoric, rather that recognise it as the greatest weapon in their arsenal, we might just remember the words of Germaine Greer: “To kill a man is simply murder; it is revolu-tion to turn him on.”
 When rightis wrong
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seNior editorial teaM
 ostis Geropoulos(Energy & Russian Affairs)kgeropoulos@neurope.euCillian Donnelly (EU Affairs)cdonnelly@neurope.euAndy Carling (EU Affairs)acarling@neurope.euAriti Alamanou (Legal Affairs)aalamanou@neurope.euLouise Kissa (Fashion)lkissa@neurope.euAlexandra Coronakis (Columnist)acoronaki@neurope.eu
22 - 28 September, 2013
By Cillian Donnelly 
t is wrong to think of the intention of the independence movement in Scot-land as being motivated by the desireto simply “break away” from the EuropeanUnion, a Scottish MEP has said. Alyn Smith, a member of the pro-inde-pendence Scottish National Party (SNP)told New Europe that recent comments by European Commission vice president, Joaquín Almunia, which have fuelledspeculation about the place of secessionistmovements in Europe only serves to de-flect from wider arguments for independ-ence.Speaking on 16 September, in com-ments clearly directed at the Catalan inde-pendence movement, Almunia said “if onepart of a territory of a member state decidesto separate, the separated part isnt a mem- ber of the European Union.” His commentsecho an earlier statement by commis-sion president, Jose Manuel Barroso, thatseemed to suggest that Scotland would notautomatically be allowed to remain in theEU if it voted to leave the United Kingdom.Scotland will vote in an independencereferendum on 18 September 2014.However, the pro-EU SNP, which is ina strong position to increase its represen-tation in Brussels at next years EuropeanParliament elections, retains its ambitionto remain firmly within the union, saysSmith. The party, he says, wants a brandof independence that keeps the country “within the EU trademark, in a governmentthat represents ourselves.“Catalonia is Catalonia, Scotland isScotland,” he says. “Each case is based onindividual circumstances. Each case is very, very different.”The comments made by the Spanishcommissioner, while directed at a domes-tic audience, have wider implications forcountries or regions with ambitions for in-dependence.The European Commission has beenreluctant to address the issue directly, andprivate sources have acknowledged that Almunias comments do not represent EUpolicy. Officially, independence move-ments are treated as an internal matter forindividual member states. According to Almunias analysis, break-away regions would have to re-apply to jointhe EU, a process that requires unanimity from the other member states in council.The SNP “has always recognised that theEU is a community-based instrument,”says Smith, adding that the party does notsee this as a hurdle to them remaining amember of the union.More broadly, and with a year to go tothe independence referendum, the SNPand its supporters are “feeling good rightnow,” says Smith. It will also be the firsttime that 16 and 17 year-olds will be en-franchised. “People are now thinking aboutthis in earnest; and it is a justifiable vote. Ithink people are up for it.”
Scotland ‘up for independence’
SNP express keen desire to remain in EU
The Scottish Saltire hangs in Edinburgh in August during the annual Festival Fringe. Witharound a year to go before Scotland’s historic referendum, which could see the 5.5 million-strong nation move to split from the rest of the UK, a string of shows on the festivalprogramme tackled the thorny issue of independence. |
The European Commissions vice president, Joaquin Almunia, threw a curveball into theraging debate over Catalonia independence by warning that this north-east region of Spain will be forced to forfeit the EuropeanUnion if it declares independence.“If one part of a territory of a member statedecides to separate, the separated part isnta member of the European Union,” he said.His strong statement came as a surprise. Ordid it?Even though Almunia is a prominent Span-ish politician, he was speaking as a Europeancommissioner. But instead of easing the ten-sion created by the growing calls for Catalo-nias independence, his warning may havestirred more controversy - throwing moreoil on the fire.Lets briefly consider the reasoning behind Almunias decision to make this statement. As a member of the Spanish Socialist Party,his statement is clearly political.Now lets put the debate in context. Spainhas been hard hit by the economic crisis andhas been scarred by unemployment - thesecond highest rate in the entire 28-member bloc. One can argue that it is this crisis andthe harsh austerity measures being imple-mented by officials in Madrid that has onceagain fuelled Catalonias bid for independ-ence and renewed calls for a referendum todecide its fate once and for all.So, the economic crisis has made the prob-lem more acute than ever before.But there is also reason for a widespreadconcern that must be addressed. Scotlandalso wants independence from the UnitedKingdom. And there are other regions inEurope that feel the same and could follow suit if Catalonia separates from Spain.The big question now is whether Almunia was right to warn that separation means aone-way ticket out of the EU. Absolutely not.Those who support Catalonias independ-ence are asking only that the region be al-lowed to cut ties with the distant capital. Asregards integration with the European Un-ion, they dont want less, but more of it.One can also argue that it is wholly incom-prehensible that the EU, which is strugglingto hold onto member states facing huge fis-cal problems and is even proceeding withthe accession of new countries, would evenconsider expelling those who seek inde-pendence.Even if this can legally be done, it could backfire on the EU. Logic says that a unionlike the EU - a union that takes great pridein convergence and integration and hailsthe Euro currency as the first step toward atruly unified Europe - cannot shun regions just because they decide (for historical, eco-nomic or political reasons) to secede fromthe state to which they belong especially if separation comes after a peaceful referen-dum. And lets not forget that in the case of Catalonia, those who support separationalso support the European Union.It is clear that the 21st century presentsplenty of new challenges that need to beaddressed in a new way. History has taughtus that failing to find solutions to new prob-lems will create even more problems and failto bring the desired results.
s homage to EU
By  Alex Beaulieu
Throughout Europe there are various regions hop-ing to secede from the larger country they are tiedto. These movements are all at different stages withdifferent degrees of demand. While some of these di- visions may have been caused by the tensions of therecent economic crisis, many of these secessionistmovements come from deeper conflicts found in cul-ture and history, perhaps exacerbated by recent devel-opments. A common theme for all of them, however,is the shared desire to be autonomous.One of the most well known separatist movementsis found in Spain. The region of Catalonia has beenfighting for independence for years. For the peopleof Catalonia, Spain has suppressed their culture sincethe times of Franco. While the movement to secedehas been in action for years, it continues to gathermomentum. Catalonia is now attempting to pushthrough a referendum regarding its independence.Similarly, there is growing support for the secessionof Scotland from the United Kingdom. There is aplanned independence referendum to take place inSeptember of 2014. While Scotland does not havethe same overwhelming support for secession that isfound in Catalonia, there are many people who feelScotland is no longer fairly represented in the BritishParliament. Another well know separatist movement can be foundin Belgium. Between Flanders of the north and Wal-lonia of the south, Belgium is split in two. The desireto partition the country stems partially from culturaland language differences and partially from economicdifferences. The tensions between these two regionscontinue to increase and the demands for separatismhave only gotten stronger.There is another struggle for independence occur-ring in the Basque region of Spain. Compared to theother separatist movements, the desire for independ-ence in Basque country has an additional elementof violence. The Basque country previously faced afour-decade period of armed violence against Spainand France. While the majority of the violence hascome to an end, the separatist movement is still at theforefront of regional politics.Previously, there has also been separatist behaviorin northern Italy. The area of South Tyrol began de-manding independence not long after the beginningof the economic recession. While nothing directly came from these demands, some of the separatist sen-timent still remains.In Romania, the area of Transylvania has been callingfor independence. The tension between Transylvaniaand the rest of Romania comes from both issues of economics and the fact that Transylvania is home to alarge population of ethnic Hungarians. That particu-lar area, in fact, has belonged to bother Romania andHungary at different points in history. While techni-cally part of Romania, the people of Transylvania rep-resent a different culture and ethnicity even today.In 1993, the country of Czechoslovakia was parti-tioned into the Czech Republic and Slovakia. Fol-lowing the split, both countries were able to becomemembers of the European Union in the enlargementof 2004. If any of the current separatist movementssucceed, however, it is difficult to determine how EUmembership will proceed.
SecessionistMovementsin Europe

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