8th European Day in Remembrance of Victims of Terrorism

On 11 March 2012 the European Union commemorates the 8th European Day in Remembrance of Victims of Terrorism and EU Commissioner Cecilia Malmström stressed that is a time for commemoration and remembrance, a time for solidarity and encouragement. Gilles de Kerchove, EU Counter-terrorism coordinator highlighted that more has to be done to make the voices of victims heard in public and to devote more attention to victims, their families, friends and relatives and less to the perpetrators.

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European action has already helped more than 32 million people to gain access to drinking water

The European Water Initiative celebrates its 10th anniversary at the same time as the international community can celebrate that the Millennium Development Goal on sustainable access to drinking water has been achieved, five years before the deadline of 2015. So, the EU helped more than 32 million people to gain access to improved water supply and 9 million to sanitation facilities.

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EU citizens currently residing in an EU country other than their own face obstacles to exercising their local voting rights

The European citizens that living and working in another Member State other than their own, around 8 million people of voting age, are still facing obstacles to vote or stand as a candidate in local elections in the EU country in which they live. In addition, only around 10% currently take advantage of this right.

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The ECB earned a surplus of €1,894 million in 2011, compared with a surplus of €1,334 million in 2010

The Annual Accounts approved by the European Central Bank (ECB) for 2011 shows that the Governing Council decided to transfer an amount of €1,166 million to the risk provision, which increased the risk provision to the level of its present ceiling of €6,363 million. As a result of the transfer to the risk provision, the ECB’s net profit for 2011 was €728 million in comparison with the €171 million of 2010.

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The addition of sugars to fruit juices will not longer be authorised with the adoption of a new directive

The Council adopted the compromise text previously agreed with the European Parliament that aligns the EU directive on fruit juices to the international food standards of the Codex Alimentarius. Once the new rules enters into force, the addition of sugars to fruit juices will not longer be authorised. The new directive authorises the food business operators to use a statement on the labels informing the consumers that from a certain date no fruit juices contain added sugars.

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The Council adopted a position on the single European railway area which modifies Commission's proposal

Member States agreed its first-reading position on the single European railway area directive. Whilst agreeing with the objective of the recast Commission's proposal, the Council considers a number of its provisions to be too far-reaching or not clear and simple enough. It therefore modified the key parts of the proposal, i. e. the conditions of access by railway undertakings to service facilities, the financing of railway infrastructures and charging for their use, and the functions of the regulatory body supervising the railway market.

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