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A protester kicks away a tear gas canister during a demonstration in Athens on November 7, 2012. A man runs away from clashes between protesters and riot police outside the parliament in Athens on November 7, 2012. Petrol bombs exploded during a demonstration in Athens on November 7, 2012. A dog sleeps in a deserted commercial street in central Athens on November 7, 2012 during a 48-hour general strike. Demonstrators stand in front of the Greek Parliament in Athens on November 7, 2012 during a 48-hour general strike. Greece adopts tough austerity plan Jobs crisis takes toll on Greece Passage [...]

BERLIN A deal to appoint Luxembourg’s Yves Mersch to the European Central Bank’s board could be clinched this week, the head of the European parliament said on Monday, ending a standoff that has deprived Germany’s Bundesbank of a powerful ally at the heart of the ECB. European Parliament President Martin Schulz told Reuters that both he and European Council chief Herman Van Rompuy would acknowledge the controversy that has held up the appointment – the absence of any women policymakers on the ECB board – by raising the issue at a European Union summit on Thursday. “We also expect the [...]

BRUSSELS The European Parliament is set to reject Luxembourg central banker Yves Mersch’s appointment to the European Central Bank’s executive board on grounds that he is a man and insufficient efforts have been made to appoint a woman. The move could delay a key appointment at the ECB at a time when the euro zone’s central bank is devising methods to deal with a sovereign debt crisis. Leading lawmakers from six of the largest political groupings in the European Parliament have agreed to reject Mersch, 63, on grounds of systemic gender bias at the ECB, a statement from one of [...]

BRUSSELS The European Parliament will vote on the proposed appointment of Yves Mersch to the European Central Bank’s Executive Board later this month after a delay to protest against male bias, a parliamentary source said on Wednesday. The vote will now take place on October 22, the parliament source said. Mersch, Luxembourg’s central bank governor, could still take the ECB seat even if parliament votes against him because the appointment is in the hands of EU member states. The Parliament will concentrate more on how Mersch was chosen than his competence, parliamentary sources say. In September, the lawmakers postponed Mersch’s [...]

PARIS France’s lower house of parliament voted to ratify a European budget discipline treaty on Tuesday as most left-wing lawmakers got behind Socialist President Francois Hollande on a law seen as key to restoring euro zone stability. A law ratifying the fiscal pact was passed by 477 votes in favor to 70 against, despite a small but noisy revolt from left-wingers and Greens that threatened to embarrass Hollande just before an October 18-19 European Union summit. In all, 45 among the 314 lawmakers that make up Hollande’s left-wing parliamentary coalition either voted against the law or abstained, ignoring pleas from [...]

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