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January 2018
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Friday, 19 January 2018
In a stand against a deal struck by five of the world's top libraries and Google to digitize millions of books, 19 European libraries have agreed to back a similar European project to safeguard literature.Nineteen European national libraries have joined forces against a planned communications revolution by Internet search giant Google to create a global virtual library, organizers said Wednesday. The 19 libraries are backing instead a multi-million euro counter-offensive by European nations to put European literature online.
"The leaders of the undersigned national libraries wish to support the initiative of Europe's leaders aimed at a large and organized digitization of the works belonging to our continent's heritage," a statement said. "Such a move needs a tight coordination of national ambitions at EU level to decide on the selection of works," it added.

The statement was signed by national libraries in Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Poland, Slovenia, Slovakia, Spain and Sweden. The British National Library has given its implicit support to the move, without signing the motion, while Cyprus and Malta have agreed verbally to the text. Portugal is also set to approve it.
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Thursday, 28 April 2005
One feature of the Schengen agreements on the free movement of people is that citizens of many third countries are able to visit any country in the Schengen area without a visa. The reverse should also be true, but in some cases, third countries require nationals of certain Member States to have a visa, which leaves the situation unbalanced. This is the case for Greek citizens travelling to the United States, for example, or Portuguese nationals heading from Brunei. In 2001, the Council adopted a mechanism for a joint EU response in such circumstances, but this has never been used, mainly because it was too inflexible, focusing on retaliation without considering the political risks that might entail. The Commission is now seeking to improve the mechanism to make it more realistic and more likely to be used.

MEPs are now due to debate the changes, based on a consultative report by Henrik LAX (ALDE, FI) for the Civil Liberties Committee. The report proposes making a number of amendments to the Commission's plan, notably aimed at increasing (from 10 to 90 days) the time available to a Member State to negotiate on a bilateral basis with the third country concerned, and at broadening the definition of reciprocity to cover procedural changes by a third country the effect of which is substantially to limit the movement of nationals of a Member State. MEPs in the Committee also want Parliament to have a more prominent role in the proposed process for reinstating visa requirements for third countries.
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The European Commission adopted today a Programme for Action to strengthen Europe’s support to confront HIV/AIDS, Malaria and Tuberculosis outside the EU’s borders. It proposes a menu of concrete actions to address the dramatic situation, with over 6 million people dying every year. The initiative follows the promise made by Commissioner Louis Michel, in charge of Development and Humanitarian Aid, to do better, do more and quicker in delivering on the Millennium Development Goals (MDG).
NEST (New and Emerging Science and Technology) is a new activity in the Sixth Framework Programme (FP6). It aims to support unconventional and visionary research with the potential to open new fields for European science and technology, as well as research on potential problems uncovered by science.
In addition to developing new scientific understanding and capabilities, and opening up new fields, NEST activities aim to consolidate European efforts in emerging fields of research and assist in planning future activities in support to a European Research Area. They will help to nurture themes that will need larger-scale support in future European research programmes. NEST is designed to be flexible and interdisciplinary research is encouraged. There are no restrictions on the scientific fields to be addressed except that the research carried out under NEST should cut across or lie outside the thematic priority areas. NEST will not support projects which simply cannot find their home in one of FP6’s thematic priorities. NEST involves three complementary Action Lines (ADVENTURE, INSIGHT, PATHFINDER), each contributing to the overall goal of improving Europe’s capacity and expertise anticipating future scientific and technological needs. The overall budget for NEST within FP6 is € 215 million.
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