European Council

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European Council

a body both within and outside the EUROPEAN UNION. The European Council brings together the heads of state or of government of the Member States and the President of the Commission of the European Union. They are assisted by the Ministers for Foreign Affairs and by a member of the Commission. It meets at least twice a year.

Quite the most curious body in the European Union, its origins lie in the time when the council of the European Union had given up voting by qualified majority and tried to seek unanimity. Decision-making became more difficult, and momentum was sought from the extra-Community Intergovernmental Conference of Heads of State or Government because the parties at this gathering were eligible to be members of the Council proper. As a result of a resolution of that body, in 1974 the parties agreed to meet three times a year and whenever necessary to constitute themselves as the Council. When they meet, the President and senior Vice-president of the Commission attend. In practice, it does keep to overall policy and tries to consider issues of development and policy and the clearing of log jams. Its success has been rewarded by recognition in the SINGLE EUROPEAN ACT. There are proposals to give it formal institutional status.

References in periodicals archive ?
The EU summit will also touch upon the investigation of the MH-17 Boeing crash in Ukraine in July 2014.
Referring to an emergency EU migration summit planned for today, Seehofer said: "If the EU summit does not bring effective solutions, migrants already registered in another EU country will be rejected." He said he had never suggested the border should be completely sealed off.
The aim of the event, which is an official part of the EU Summit - Western Balkans, is to exchange experiences and contribute to better regional cooperation, particularly in the area of regional economies.
The ongoing EU summit is also negotiating new terms with the U.K.
"For us it is important to follow the other events, such as the draft of the European Commission report, as well as the EU Summit in December.
The proposal is to be discussed by the College of Commissioners on 5 March, and will be presented at the EU summit the following day.
Expectations of the EU summit that is scheduled March 14-15 hold back the activity at exchange grounds.
A eurozone summit will follow the main EU summit late on Thursday.
The EU summit as such crystallised my main premise on this crisis: you can extend-and-pretend for a long, long time, but everything eventually reaches its saturation point.
A group of German economists have criticised decisions made at an EU summit last week.
dollar fell to the lower 79 yen range Thursday in Tokyo on domestic exporters' selling related to month-end settlements, but its fall was limited as players refrained from active trading ahead of the two-day EU summit starting later in the day.
The recent EU Summit should bring some short-term relief to Europe's struggling banks.