Hans Memling (Memlinc) (c. 1430 – 11 August 1494) was an Early Netherlandish painter, born in Seligenstadt/Germany, who was the last major fifteenth century artist in the Low Countries, the successor to Jan van Eyck and Rogier van der Weyden, whose tradition he continued with little innovation. Born in Seligenstadt, near Frankfurt in the Middle Rhein region, it is believed that Memling served his apprenticeship at Mainz or Cologne, and later worked in the Netherlands under Rogier van der Weyden (c. 1455-1460).
(Hans Memling source: Artmight)
The Joint Commission of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), composed by the E3/EU+3 and Iran, will convene on 10 January in Vienna. The meeting will review the implementation of the agreement and discuss the issues raised in the letter Foreign Minister Zarif addressed on 16 December to the High Representative, Federica Mogherini, as coordinator of the Joint Commission. The Joint Commission will be preceded by a meeting of the sanctions working group, – according to the European External Action Service (EEAS) announcement.
Many experts relate the interest in the upcoming assessment of the Iranian nuclear deal with the recent statements of the upcoming US administration, indicating it will attempt to abandon the multilateral agreement and reinforce the US nuclear capabilities.
Communicating via Twitter, the president-elect Donald Trump declared his intention to “expand” US nuclear arsenal.
A number of previously classified documents were published on the site of the International Atomic energy agency (IAEA) as a gesture of increasing transparency necessary to convince general public in validity of the agreement. The move came after a wave of criticism of the agreement by the USA Republican congressmen.
The agreement allows Iran to possess only low-enriched uranium, limited to an amount inferior to 300 kilograms at any moment in time.
The awaited decision on the fate of the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement is now at the hands of the Dutch Parliament. The European Council stated that they ‘noted carefully’ the referendum outcome in The Netherlands, however following the existing legal procedures the Agreement has to be endorsed/adopted by all 28 member states according to national relevant procedures. In case one of the states denies the ratification, the entire Agreement dissolves.
The debate and vote in Dutch Parliament will take place before the election on 15th March 2017.
‘The European Council notes that the Decision set out in the Annex is legally binding on the 28 Member States of the European Union, and may be amended or repealed only by common accord of their Heads of State or Government. It will take effect once the Kingdom of the Netherlands has ratified the agreement and the Union has concluded it. Should this not be the case, the Decision will cease to exist’ (Source: European Council Conclusions on Ukraine 15 December 2016, Brussels).
Comment on the arrival and doorstep (in English) by Federica MOGHERINI, High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice-President of the EC.
The wording of the top #EU diplomat has changed in absence of any evidence of so called ‘Russian atrocities’ in #Aleppo. Swifly she shifted from condemnation of fictitious crimes of #Assad troops backed by Russian to an appeal to ‘protect’ civilians.
Clearly once again the hellish machine of the Western propaganda failed to smear Russians for their struggle against #Islamic State attacking Syria. Instead of saying ‘thank you’ to Russians for fighting #IS the West did everything possible during the entire conflict in Syria from the day One to cover the real atrocities of the Islamic fundamentalists. John Kerry was trying again and again to convince Sergey Lavrov to give the Islamists a halt. The Cold War is over, but its rudiments are still in the minds of politicians, fighting for sphere of influence in the Middle East at cost of human lives.
The European Union prefers to see the Middle East and North Africa to be seized by bearded fanatics slaughtering people, than co-operate with Kremlin on fighing Islamic fundamentalism. Europe participated in destruction Iraq, they destroyed Libya, covering #Gaddafi assassination with a figue leave of the UN resolution on no-fly zone; the West degraded Libya to a giant playground of terrorist groups from Al Qaeda to Boko Haram, – now each assembly of villains has there its active branch.
Thanks to Russians the Syrian secular state survived attacks of fundamentalists, backed by Americans and Europeans, the way they did it with #Taliban in #Afghanistan using them as a weapon against the USSR. Russians left when the USSR collapsed, however now the West has a problem in Afhanistan that is unsolvable for generation to come. Radical Islam claimed thousands of lives, and will continue to claim more. The EU and their allies did not learn from their lessons in the past. Unfortunately, the price for their mistakes will be paid by the regular citizens, who will face the need to defend themselves against the real, not ficticious atrocities of the Islamists, their politicians so tenderly cared about. In spite of their efforts during five years of Syrian conflict the ‘moderate opposition’ did not manage to separate from the #jihaddi. Looks suspicious, doesn’t it?
On Saturday 10 December 2016 during much awaited opening of European Council meeting centre Europa ‘The Lantern’ almost 2000 attendees enjoyed a guided tour.
The majestic project of the Belgium ‘Samyn and Parnters Architects’ took five years to erect, but the whole process was much longer, starting back in 2004, and included the renovation of the infrastructure of both metro and railroad stations of Schuman square, and an old historic site of Art Deco masterpiece of Swiss architect Michel Polak – the Residence Palace.
The Samyn winning design for Europa Council meeting centre with a big ‘Lantern’ inside evoked a whirlwind of passions, and even some criticism of contemporary art lovers, especially of its facade, covered with four thousands of old, recycled oak widow-frames collected in demolition from all over Europe.
However today one can admit Philippe Samyn triumph as the elegance and sophistication of the finalized construction are breathtaking. As contemporary art paragon ‘The Lantern’ has already inspired the European Council to engage with the edifice adopting it’s image as a logo.
Hopefully, the aesthetic magic of the building will have an inspirational effect on the officials who will start exploiting the site in a few weeks.
From the beginning of 2017, the Europa building becomes the home of the two institutions representing the EU member states: the Council of the European Union and the European Council, where more than 6000 meetings are planned to take place annually.
Located at the heart of the European district, the Europa building combines a new part, an innovative lantern-shaped structure designed by the consortium of Samyn and Partners (Belgium), Studio Valle Progettazioni (Italy) and Buro Happold (UK), with a renovated section, block A of the Résidence Palace, a partly listed Art Deco complex designed by architect Michel Polak in 1922.
The entire project amounted to 321 million euro, and was funded by the EU budget.
The Europa was built in line with the principles of sustainable development. The building was designed with modern systems to regulate lighting, humidity and temperature. It also includes green features such as solar panels or a rain water collection system.
The Lantern uses LEDs as the most efficient and eco-friendly lighting system. Most of the light does not originate from the lantern itself but is projected onto it by lamps placed on the inner side of the façade. A white silkscreen printing pattern has been put on the lantern to maximize light reflection. The lantern will be on for a few hours in the evening and in the morning in winter, adjusted to sunset.
Nadia Murad (pictured) and Lamiya Aji Bashar, public advocates for the Yazidi community in Iraq and survivors of sexual enslavement by the so-called Islamic State, will receive the European Parliament’s Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought in a ceremony on Tuesday at noon.
‘On #HumanRightsDay, I call on you to #StandUp4HumanRights. If we all do our small part, in every corner of the world, I believe we can end genocide and mass atrocities against women and children. If we have the courage to stand up and fight for those we don’t know – who live thousands of miles away – we can make a difference. The world is one community and we need to act as such”, – says Nadia Murad post on her page in social media.
A joint press conference with Parliament’s President Martin Schulz will take place immediately after the award ceremony at 12.30.
Also shortlisted for the prize were Can Dündar, former editor-in-chief of the Turkish daily Cumhuriyet, and Mustafa Dzhemilev, former chair of Mejlis of the Crimean Tatars People from Tatar Parliament, a former Soviet dissident and a Ukrainian MP. They will both attend the ceremony.
The Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought, named after Soviet scientist and dissident Andrei Sakharov, was established in December 1988 by the European Parliament to honour individuals or organizations who dedicate their lives to the defence of human rights and freedoms, particularly the right to free expression.
The decision of French President Francois Holland to give up the contest for the second mandate is everything but a good news for the European Union, indicating profound crisis of Socialist ideology unable to deliver prosperity to French citizens.
The so-called European values, especially cult of Socialist’s ‘solidarity’ meaning opening purse of taxpayers of wealthy EU-members to new member-states will inevitably come to an ordeal with a new French presidency, shifting to the right.
The unprecedented move is caused by an exceptionally low popularity of Holland, sometimes reduced to 7% of respondents, supporting his policies. The current state of affairs suggests the shift of the mainstream policy to the right, indicating Francois Fillion, Les Republicains, centre-right and Marine Le Pen, Front National, right* (*deriving from far-right party of her father Jean-Marie Le Pen) as the favorites of the second round of the presidential elecitons in May 2017.
If Marine is openly declaring a referendum of the EU membership as a part of her presidential campaign, the centre-right candidate Filllon does not mince his words about a need of a reform of the EU, although not questioning his country’s membership. He also criticized the position of Hollande accusing him of giving up to Germany’s Angela Merkel, in spite of the diverging interests.
Fillion also calls for a ‘new Schengen’, with real border guard, pointing at EU’s failure to protect its frontiers.
With Socialists abandoning the summit of French politics, the European Union will face a necessity to reform and adjust to new requests of a founding member run by right-wing, less interested to patch differences in name of ‘solidarity’, more flaunting its national identity.
The departure of President Hollande co insides with end of term of another high ranking European Socialist – European Parliament’s president Martin Schulz, serving his second mandate against all the odds and rules of the institution, previously practicing rotating presidency every two and a half years.His decision to refuse the third term was also appreciated by many, especially those who thought that it was unfair to break the rule to get the second term.
Altogether, the ‘winter of Socialism’ is not an unexpected political climate change – the French failed presidency of Holland only confirmed the status quo, concluding the public sentiment, and announcing upcoming change in political trends on the continent.
Caesar non supra grammaticos!