Investigate Europe stands with OCCRP in the defense of journalism. That’s why we are cross-posting this article, written by Drew Sullivan, editor of the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project, and initially published by OCCRP. Drew was working closely with Jan Kuciak, the 28 year old Solvak investigative reporter murdered last February. The article is republished with the permission of OCCRP. By Drew Sullivan, Editor …
Gdańsk, Poland’s window to the world and cradle of the Solidaritydemocracy movement, raises the flag again against a wave of populism sweeping the country. Some few hundred protestors against a new law of the Law and Justice party (PiS) risk easy identification by the police. People are well aware of this but still come out despite the fear among those who work in state-controlled enterprises or institutions of reprisals. A city lives up to it’s history.
Emily O’Reilly, the EU’s Ombudsman, fights with diligence and tenacity for transparency and accountability in European institutions. O’ Reilly calls out abuses of power by name and fights on behalf of citizens. Now, she has started against the most obstinate and unshiftable bar to greater European democracy: the European Council, the institution where governments of member states decide on the union’s legislation. In the eyes of Ms O’Reilly, the way in which this institution functions “undermines citizens’ right to hold their governments accountable”.
Labour market reform in Slovenia, designed to boost entrepreneurship and jobs, is instead condemning thousands of people to near poverty through precarious working conditions. An analysis by Investigate Europe’s media partner Pod črto.
He was internationally dismissed as an unwilling to change “loyal party soldier”. But after serving 100 days in office, João Lourenço, Angola’s new president, is busy purging the state apparatus of the ruling family. The daughter of the president, her banks and her phone company – or: How a regime change in Angola may affect Portugal through the accumulated wealth and the investments of the African country’s former presidential family.
The current leader of the Greek opposition, New Democracy party leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis, is odds-on favourite to become the next Greek prime minister. Both German and US media have dubbed him a “star of the people” offering Greece “a glimmer of hope”. A sworn reformist, he slams nepotism and corruption. And yet that international praise ignores hard facts – such as the inclusion of his spouse in the Paradise Papers or his personal involvement in the biggest corruption scandal of the last 30 years in Greece.
The resolution to be adopted next week in Strasbourg is a major step towards further militarisation of the EU. For the first time ever, the European Parliament makes the case for the creation of a Commission Directorate General (DG)-Defence. Rapporteur Michael Gahler is also the head of Kangaroo, a lobby group promoting security and defence imperatives in the EU institutions for decades.
Investigate Europe investigation into public IT contracting practices prompts French officials to call for a public inquiry into defence contracts handed to Microsoft.
The collapse of the negotiations for a new government gives the German political elite a second chance to avoid a capital mistake. Reform and democratisation of the EU could finally get the attention it deserves.
The politics of Poland’s ruling party “Law and Justice” (PiS) nowadays promote allies as unpredictable as Trump; as politically marginal as Orbán, and as troublesome as Erdoğan. The freedom of the press has begun to suffer in countries that once seemed to be young and growing or well-established democracies. We, the journalists, need to wake up.
Italy is the EU laggard in terms of productivity, but at the same time it retains a strong performance in manufacturing, registering the third best trade surplus in Europe. How can this paradox be explained? What are the roots of these problems and where is the potency of the country concentrated? Italian journalist Maria Maggiore of Investigate Europe gives her vision of the Bel Paese.
The euro is unstable because wages and inflation rates are developing unequally, a new study by the think tank Bruegel shows. And the Germans are to blame. If the euro zone disintegrates, it will happen because of German economic nationalism.
The SPD chancellor candidate is supposed to bring new momentum into German politics. But his actions as the president of the European Parliament raises doubts.
Portugal used to be the former poster child of the EU crisis countries. Now it has a new left government which opposes austerity – and became a role model for European socialists. How did this happen?
We, the reporters of Investigate Europe, recently published our first investigation. For it, we collaborated to interview over 200 experts, border guards, politicians, industrialists, and academics over the past months. Via the Global Investigate Journalists Network we gave a look behind-the-scenes of our transnational collaboration. Read the full text here.
Danish and Polish reporters just broke the same story – on misuse of EU funds by right-wing MEPs. It caused a scandal in Denmark, but nothing in Poland. How come?
Gare à l’atterrissage : si les Italiens disent «non» au référendum, par ricochet, c’est l’existence même du projet européen qui pourrait en pâtir avec l’arrivée au pouvoir des populistes.
Italians will soon have to make a difficult decision in a crucial referendum, the consequences of which risk changing the face of Italy and Europe. Its a choice between bad and worse, because populism in on the rise.
The governments of Denmark and Norway are competing in making their public the most timid in Europe. In both countries the immigration debate has changed, slowly but surely, first in Denmark, then in Norway. It’s become poisonous. It is increasingly about identity – what it means to be Danish, what it means to be Norwegian – in contrast to “the others” who are not, even if they might be living in the country. Norway is lagging a bit. We have King Harald.
Du porte-parole de la Commission européenne au président de l’Eurogroupe lui-même, une foule d’officiels européens a essayé d’empêcher des juges grecs de faire leur travail. Dans le cadre du nouveau fonds de privatisation, prévu par le plan d’aide à la Grèce, les membres du conseil d’administration comme les experts de cette entité sont désormais à l’abri de toute poursuite judiciaire.
From the Commission’s spokesperson to the president of Eurogroup himself, a crowd of EU officials have been trying to block Greek judges from doing their jobs. As for the new privatization fund, board members and experts, from top to bottom, can commit crimes as they please: By law, no judge can investigate them, no court can try them.
Comment l’un des journaux allemands les plus influents s’est trompé à plusieurs reprises dans le même article.
One of the most influential German newspapers reported many wrong facts in just one piece about Portugal’s and Spain’s economic situation. In Europe today, too many things are at stake to ignore such distortion of reality.
Throughout history, Poles have known migration. In recent history, they were refugees themselves. Poles were less islamophobic than other Europeans for a long time after the 9/11 terrorist attacks in 2001. But last year they elected a government that closes its doors on refugees, Muslims in particular, and which rejects a common European relocation system for people in need.
What happened to Polish generosity?
A travers l’histoire, les Polonais ont appris des migrations. Dans l’histoire récente, ils étaient eux-mêmes des réfugiés. Les Polonais étaient moins islamophobes que d’autres Européens après le 9 septembre 2011. Mais l’an dernier ils ont élu un gouvernement qui a fermé la porte aux réfugiés, aux musulmans en particulier et qui rejette le principe de la relocation des populations dans le besoin. Mais qu’est devenue la générosité polonaise ?
It happened in Ballyhea, a small Irish village in the countryside on the way from Limerick to Cork, where my bias was challenged by a most unexpected encounter.
Cela s’est produit à Ballyhea, un petit village de la campagne irlandaise, entre Limerick et Cork. C’est ici que mes préjugés ont été mis au défi après une rencontre inattendue.