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S&D Group's news on the European Parliament's Plenary session in Brussels - 5 to 8 October 2020

Date

05 Oct 2020

Sections

InfoSociety

Outcome of the special European Council meeting and Rule of Law conditionality in the framework of the MFF 2021-2027 and Next Generation EU

Debates on Monday 5 October and Tuesday 6 October

Iratxe García, S&D Group President

“We are pleased that EU leaders showed unity and agreed on sanctions against the Belarusian regime that has violently repressed peaceful protests following the fraudulent presidential elections. It is also good news that leaders sent a strong message to Turkey demanding the respect for international law. We think there is still room to de-escalate tensions in the Eastern Mediterranean, but Turkey must be willing to abide by the law as a starting point.

 EU leaders also talked about strengthening the EU’s resilience in light of the challenges resulting from the ongoing pandemic. Well, in order to face these challenges we must have an EU budget for the next seven years and the Recovery Fund available as soon as possible. However, the EU can only thrive if our values and principles are respected. We need an effective rule of law conditionality mechanism in the EU budget. The current position adopted by the Council lacks some crucial safeguards. I hope that the negotiations with the Parliament will start as soon as possible so that we can strengthen the weak proposal currently on the table.”

S&D press officer: MARTIN DE LA TORRE Victoria - victoria.martindelatorre@europarl.europa.eu  + 32 473 23 41 73

European Climate Law

Vote on Wednesday 7 October

The EU Parliament's chief negotiator and committee on environment S&D coordinator, Jytte Guteland

“In the environment committee we fought to significantly improve the Commission’s proposals to make the European Climate Law fit for purpose. We progressives will fight for this in the next plenary to send a clear message to the European Commission and the EU Council in light of the upcoming negotiations: we expect all member states to achieve climate neutrality by 2050 at the latest. Furthermore, we must reduce by 60% - and certainly not only by today's level of 40% - the GHG emissions by 2030 compared to 1990 levels. After the vote in plenary next week, the ball will be in the EU Commission’s and EU Council’s court. Our battle for a more progressive, green and sustainable Europe goes on.”

S&D press officer: BERNAS Jan - jan.bernas@europarl.europa.eu  + 32 471 64 87 77

Resolution on rule of law and fundamental rights in Bulgaria

Debate on Monday 5 October, Vote on Thursday 8 October

Juan Fernando López Aguilar, S&D Chair of the Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs and rapporteur

“Press freedom is an essential ingredient for a healthy democracy. For the third year in a row, Bulgaria is 111th on the World Press Freedom Index, by far the worst ranking for any EU country. In Bulgaria, we are also witnessing a worrying a lack of accountability in the judicial system and its Prosecutor General and a Bulgarian Parliament that is repeatedly neglecting its role in the checks and balances of a government mired in allegations of corruption. Recommendations from the Venice Commission need to be fully implemented. The combination of these ingredients is forming a toxic cocktail where public trust is very low and people are regularly taking to the streets. Next week in plenary, MEPs are voting on a resolution shedding light on the deteriorating state of the rule of law, democracy and fundamental rights in Bulgaria. We are doing this for the people of Bulgaria, who we stand with in their fight for justice, accountability and democracy.”

S&D press officer: MACPHEE Ewan - ewan.macphee@europarl.europa.eu  +32 478 96 19 14

EU Mechanism on democracy, rule of law and fundamental rights

Debate on Monday 5 October, Vote on Wednesday 7 October

Katarina Barley, Vice President of the European Parliament and S&D shadow rapporteur on the Establishment of an EU Mechanism on Democracy, the Rule of Law and Fundamental Rights

“With a rapidly deteriorating situation in a number of member states, the case for an effective EU mechanism on the rule of law, democracy and fundamental rights has never been stronger. We will never hesitate to call out when European citizens’ fundamental rights are at stake, but they expect more than that from us. The days of long, drawn-out discussions between member states leading nowhere must come to an end. For the EU to be credible and defend its fundamental values like the rule of law, we need an effective instrument that has the teeth for financial consequences in case of  fundamental rights violations and ensures that the money actually reaches the citizens and not the pockets of misled governments. With an overwhelming majority, the European Parliament’s position on an effective EU mechanism on democracy, the rule of law and fundamental rights is clear: we represent EU citizens and we need a tool in place to effectively defend their rights whenever they are at risk.”

S&D press officer: MACPHEE Ewan - ewan.macphee@europarl.europa.eu  +32 478 96 19 14

Women on Boards

Debate on Monday 5 October

Evelyn Regner, S&D Chair of Committee on Women's Rights and Gender Equality

“On Monday we will call on the member states, and specially on the current German presidency, to finally take action and adopt the so called ‘Women on Boards’ Directive that introduces an open and transparent procedure to reach a minimum of 40% of women on non-executive boards of EU companies. If we want to be serious and ensure equal opportunities between men and women in top management jobs, we need this directive. Unfortunately, it has been blocked by a minority of member states in the Council for 7 years now, and we must avoid the risk of no agreement. The Covid-19 pandemic has increased the inequalities between men and women and therefore we must show that Europe cares about gender equality. Not only in words but especially by actions”.

S&D press officer: CZERNY-GRIMM Inga - inga.czerny-grimm@europarl.europa.eu  + 32 474 62 28 84

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