Is Germany’s political landscape becoming a breeding ground for extremism?

Last Week, the German center left Social Democratic Party (SPD) decided to cooperate once more with the country’s conservatives, the Christian Democratic Union and its Bavarian sister Christian Social Union. They are to negotiate the formation of a grand coalition government, understandably under Chancellor Angela Merkel. This development may now seem the only mathematically possible […]

VW diesel scandal and climate change: can increased independent car checks lead to cleaner mobility?

It was last Thursday when the European Parliament together with the Council and the Commission agreed to enhance the car testing system by providing extra checks to the cars that are or will be placed in the market based on the proposal of the European Commission made on January 2016. Despite the fact that this […]

The EU and Japan seal free trade pact that will cover 30% of global GDP

Statement by Cecilia Malmström, Member of the EC in charge of Trade, on the successful conclusion of the final discussions on the EU-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) – Brussels, 08 Dec 2017. (Copyright: European Union; Source: EC - Audiovisual Service; Photo: Georges Boulougouris)

Last Friday, after striking a life-changing Brexit agreement with the United Kingdom, the European Union managed to finalise negotiations on a major trade deal with Japan. Sources revealed that EU and Japan leaders were able to find a final accord on the telephone, after their respective chief negotiators concluded a meeting in Brussels and paved […]

Hazy ‘breakthrough’ saves PM May, leaves Ireland in limbo: Brexit

With only a couple of hours sleep in the very early hours of last Friday, the British PM Theresa May boarded a RAF aircraft and landed in Brussels before dawn. Weary as she was, she rushed to Berlaymont building, the EU Commission headquarters. There she met Jean-Claude Juncker the President of the European Commission and […]

“Beating pollution for our planet”, a Sting Exclusive by Mr Erik Solheim, the Executive Director of the United Nations Environment

This article was exclusively written for The European Sting by Mr Erik Solheim, Executive Director of the United Nations Environment. The opinions expressed in this article belong to the distinguished writer. Some may once have seen fighting pollution as a sacrifice made against improving the quality of our lives. The reality could hardly be further […]

Gender Equality and medicine in the 21st Century: we want the fair share

This article was exclusively written for the Sting by Ms Julia Puaschunder, a 5th year medical student at the Medical University of Innsbruck Austria, and currently part of the Extended Executive Board at the Austrian Medical Students’ Association. Ms Puaschunder is affiliated to the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA). The opinions expressed in […]

Trump: Hostile to Europe, voids Tillerson’s “ironclad” ally pledge

At the end of last week, Rex Tillerson, the US State Department Secretary was intentionally undermined by President Donald Trump. This surprise move from the White House came only hours after the former gave an “’ironclad’ promise of U.S. support to its oldest allies in Europe”. To undercut this pledge, the White House leaked information […]

UN Environment Assembly 2017: where the world convenes to #BeatPollution

The third session of the United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA) is concluding today in Nairobi, Kenya, with more than 4.000 heads of state, ministers, business leaders, UN officials and civil society representatives to partake in this three-day meeting. Pollution and the ways to eliminate all its forms is the target of every leader, activist, scientist […]

US follows the EU in impeding China market economy status in WTO

A ship with containers at the port of Rotterdam. (Copyright: European Union. Source: EC - Audiovisual Service. Photo: Robert Meerding)

Trade relations between China and the West may be on the brink of a substantial turn. Last Thursday, the United States have formalized to the World Trade Organization (WTO) its opposition to China’s request to be recognized as a “market economy”. The move, which is strong enough to represent a gamechanger alone, comes amid a […]

EU’s unsparing question to UK: now what kind of future relations do you want?

This week, the countdown starts for Britain to offer final answers, about the three Brexit prerequisites: the divorce alimony, the future of the 4.5 million European citizens who work on the wrong side of the English Channel and the Irish border. Only then will Brussels pass to the second phase of the talks, to discuss […]

“At the Environment Assembly citizens expect clean, not hot air”, the Head of UN Environment in Europe underscores in a Sting Exclusive

This article was exclusively written for The European Sting by Mr Jan Dusik, UN Environment Europe’s Director and Regional Representative. The opinions expressed in this article belong to the distinguished writer. Last week’s fire at a waffle factory in Brussels luckily left no casualties behind. Yet the thick black smoke reminded people in the European […]

A long German political winter is on the way

Germany enters into a long period of political uncertainty. The ‘Grand Coalition’ of the conservatives (Christian Democratic Union/Christian Social Union) and the Social Democrats of SPD, which can offer a stable government, may take months to form. Then, even after fashioned, it will not function without friction, as  used to be the standard for Germany. […]

Energy Union: EU’s effort towards a cleaner climate with integrated energy market

The European Commission published its third annual energy report last Friday showing the progress that has been made so far since the last report in February of this year. Many policies’ amendments have been proposed for the next decade towards a greener environment and a more harmonised EU gas market. The majority of the EU […]

Gender Equality in Medicine: are we now so different from the Middle Ages?

This article was exclusively written for the Sting by Ms Barbara Marinho, a Brazilian medical student at Universidade Potiguar, Brazil. Ms Marinho is affiliated to the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA). The opinions expressed in this piece belong strictly to the writer and do not necessarily reflect IFMSA’s view on the topic, nor […]

Britain offers more money for an orderly Brexit but the Irish question resurges

If last Friday’s Reuters report from Brussels is correct and Theresa May and Donald Tusk agreed to solve the Brexit dead-end in ten days, then the wild Brexiteers must have retreated  and the orderly exit side has won the first round. Tusk, the President of the European Council said in a tweet that he told […]

Gender inequality in the medicine field: two commonly issues

This article was exclusively written for the Sting by Ms Andra Kerševičiūtė, a 2nd year medical student at the Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, Lithuania. Ms Kerševičiūtė is affiliated to the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA). The opinions expressed in this piece belong strictly to the writer and do not necessarily reflect IFMSA’s […]

Germany not famous for easy way outs from political stalemates

And now ‘Frau Bundeskanzlerin’ what? The truth is though whatever the future holds for the German political landscape, is no good. Chancellor Angela Merkel’s failure last weekend to form a government, with a viable parliamentary majority has irreparably stained the so far pristine scenery of the country’s politico-economic affairs. The unsuccessful attempts to convince liberal […]

Climate change update: will the UN member states regain momentum despite the little progress at COP23?

The 23rd conference of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP23) concluded last Saturday in Bonn but little progress was achieved and everyone is now awaiting next year’s negotiations in Poland where a rule book for the Paris agreement has to be finalised. All member states should reconsider their emission cuts upwards via […]

A male gynecologist in Iraq: red line violated

This article was exclusively written for the Sting by Mr Hussein Ali AlShadeedi, a sixth-year medical student at the University of Kufa in Iraq. Mr Hussein Ali AlShadeedi is affiliated to the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA). The opinions expressed in this piece belong strictly to the writer and do not necessarily reflect […]

Do the giant banks ‘tell’ Britain to choose a good soft Brexit and ‘remain’ or else…?

It may be true that the world is tired watching Britain being completely confused about choosing the way to exit from the European Union. Yet, the almost schizo division plaguing the Brits and their political elites alike still paralyzes to this date the divorce negotiations. Countries to be most affected by Brexit like Holland are […]

Mental health of health professionals: the alter ego

This article was exclusively written for the Sting by Ms Silvia Matilda Aștefanei, a 5th-year medical student from Bucharest, Romania. Ms Aștefanei is affiliated to the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA). The opinions expressed in this piece belong strictly to the writer and do not necessarily reflect IFMSA’s view on the topic, nor […]

Gender Equality as a platform to improve Medicine

This article was exclusively written for the Sting by Ms Leah Boquin, a medical student at her seventh yearof Medicine at the National Autonomous University of Honduras at Sula Valley (UNAH-VS). Ms Boquin is affiliated to the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA). The opinions expressed in this piece belong strictly to the writer […]

Banks, insurance giants are free again to abuse the real economy

Not many years after the financial meltdown of 2008-2010, the main culpable parties for that global catastrophe, the big banks and the gigantic insurance companies are now commandingly asking the world to forget that. They demand to be again left completely unchecked, free to repeat what they did then; inflate all and every market to […]

Gender minority and health sector: promoting mental health with better medical education

This article was exclusively written for the Sting by Mr Kai-Yuan Cheng, a PhD student at University College London. Mr Cheng is affiliated to the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA). The opinions expressed in this piece belong strictly to the writer and do not necessarily reflect IFMSA’s view on the topic, nor The […]

“Joining forces to #BeatPollution”, a Sting Exclusive by the Head of UNEP in Brussels

Exclusively written for the Sting by Mr Ulf Björnholm, Head of the United Nations Environment Programme’s Liaison Office to the EU institutions. What comes to mind when you hear the word “pollution”? And what do you think can be done about it? For me, I picture myself as a 10-year-old, somewhere in a clear-cut forest in […]

EU hits deadlock on the future of glyphosate a month before deadline

Copyright: European Union , 2017; Source: EC - Audiovisual Service; Photo: Frank Molter

Last week, European Union member states failed to agree on whether to re-licence controversial herbicide glyphosate in the bloc, and so to close a long-standing dispute over the world’s biggest-selling weedkiller. In a vote held last Thursday, the European Commission fell short again of the majority needed to renew the licence for another five years, […]

Destabilizing Lebanon after burning Syria; plotting putsch at home: King and Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia

Last week the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia Mohammed bin Salman, son of King Salman placed the Prime Minister of Lebanon, Saad Al-Hariri under house arrest in Riyadh and forced him to resign his premiership. The Sunni Lebanese premier has a double citizenship, Lebanese and Saudi Arabian. His family has extended business interests and wealth […]

Mental health in medical students: the deciphered quandary

This article was exclusively written for the Sting by Mr Ankit Raj, a final year MBBS student from Kasturba Medical College, Manipal, India. Mr Raj is affiliated to the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA). The opinions expressed in this piece belong strictly to the writer and do not necessarily reflect IFMSA’s view on […]

A neo-liberal toll free Paradise for the super rich and tax hell for wage earners

Despite the hullaballoo in main stream media about Queen Elizabeth’s investments in tax-havens and the implication of the US Trade Secretary Wilbur Ross in a Russia related offshore firm, the shocking revelation in the Paradise Papers is that London appears as the largest money washing machine of the world. The biggest single disclosure is that […]

Brexit: UK business fear of a no-deal scenario preparing for the worst

The Confederation of British Industry annual conference which took place last Monday in London was a chance for Prime Minister Theresa May to ask for more patience from the business world. Something though that seems to have been lost as negotiations show no significant progress and time presses both sides. A survey by the Chartered […]