Category Archives: Europe

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German Elections: Merkel’s Bloc Rating Slowly Approaching the Social Democrats

Opinion polls on the eve of Germany’s elections on Sunday show a slow increase in support for Angela Merkel’s conservative bloc, although it still lags behind the Social Democrats (SPD).

This is reported by the agency DPA.

The latest poll presented by the Forsa Institute on Tuesday shows that support for the CDU/CSU alliance of Angela Merkel, who is not running in these elections, rose by one percentage point to 22 percent.

Merkel’s bloc is now three points behind the SPD and their candidate for chancellor Olaf Scholz.

The difference between the two political forces has thus halved from two weeks ago and is now close to the margin of error of the Forsa poll of plus or minus 2.5 percentage points.

Other polls showed a similar increase in the CDU/CSU last week.

“The Greens, who have been leading the race for chancellor for some time, have also increased support by one percentage point. But with 17 percent, the chances of their main candidate, Annalena Berbock, becoming chancellor are now very slim.

Police reports injured in German hostage-taking

Two people were injured during a hostage-taking incident on a bus in Bavaria. This was reported by the police of Middle Franconia on their Facebook page.

The police specified that on the evening of September 21, the intercity bus was traveling toward Munich, its destination was Serbia. After the collision between the passengers, the bus stopped and the passengers left the salon, three drivers remained inside, along with a 30-year-old Serbian citizen, who, according to some reports, was armed. One of the drivers was contacted by cell phone, those remaining in the cabin left the bus, and the man was detained without resistance.

“According to the latest reports … there was a physical collision between several passengers on the bus for undisclosed reasons, with two people slightly injured. According to eyewitnesses, a dangerous situation could have ensued,” the report said.

The day before, an unidentified man took two people, hostage, on the southern freeway in southern Germany. According to preliminary data, the captured where bus drivers.

President of European Parliament hospitalized with pneumonia

President of the European Parliament David Sassoli has spent the last few days in the hospital with pneumonia.

His spokesman Roberto Quillo announced this on Twitter.

“European Parliament President David Sassoli was taken to Strasbourg Hospital on Wednesday, September 15,” the spokesman said.

Medics diagnosed Sassoli with pneumonia and began treatment immediately, he said. The MEP president is now in good condition.

Five days ago, the spokesman said that because of a fever at night, Sassoli took a test for coronavirus and the result was negative. However, his doctor advised him to rest for a few days. As a result, all items on the EP president’s agenda until September 20 were canceled.

Sassoli was vaccinated against the coronavirus.

Sassoli, an Italian Social Democrat, became president of the European Parliament in 2019. He is expected to step down at the end of his term in January, although he is believed to be seeking a second term.

The gas deficit in the EU may last until spring 2022

The head of the energy projects department of international audit and consulting network FinExpertiza in Hungary, Mate Toth, said that there is a shortage of gas on the European market, pushing prices up, and it could last until spring, and this deficit is associated with the intensive “greening” and the limited market for liquefied natural gas (LNG).

“There is a shortage of gas on the European market, and this pushes prices up. The shortage could last until next spring. The situation is related to intensive greening across Europe, production cuts, a sharp increase in the cost of CO2 emission quotas, and a limited LNG market,” Toth said.

He noted that many countries expected a decrease in gas prices to 2020 levels. That was the reason they stopped buying at the beginning of 2021 in order to buy gas at a lower cost.

Toth added that gas prices may adjust as early as next year. In the short term, a milder winter and the launch of Nord Stream  2 may contribute to lower gas prices.

Earlier it became known that at least four small energy companies in the UK are expected to go bankrupt in the coming days amid rising wholesale gas prices.

Poland has accused Belarus of transferring thousands of migrants to the EU borders

Belarus has brought more than 10 thousand migrants from the Middle East for their illegal transfer to the EU. This was stated by the Prime Minister of Poland Mateusz Morawiecki.

During a meeting with Lithuanian Prime Minister Ingrid Shimonite in Warsaw, he explained that now residents of Iraq and Syria are gathering in Belarus for this “hybrid attack”. The politician warned that the difficult situation on the border of Poland with Belarus could develop into a long-term crisis, since “Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko has made a weapon out of migration.”

In turn, Shimonite called for the physical strengthening of the border with Belarus. According to her, electronic security methods are “not completely effective”.

The migration crisis on the borders of Belarus and the European Union began at the end of May. Large groups of illegal migrants from Africa and the Middle East began to storm the borders of Lithuania, Poland, and Latvia, hoping to get asylum in European countries. It is assumed that the Belarusian authorities use their national tour operator “Tsentrkurort” to ferry migrants to the EU borders and earn money on this.

In Lithuania and Latvia, they decided to fence themselves off from Belarus with a barbed-wire fence. At the same time, the European Court of Human Rights temporarily banned the Lithuanian authorities from expelling five refugees from Afghanistan who arrived from the Belarusian territory.