Belgium, (Brussels Morning Newspaper) This week, the European Parliament will hear from MEPs on their return from a mission to Ukraine. MEPs will also meet in committee sessions to continue discussions on the French Presidency’s priorities, dealing with online disinformation, Europol, and the state of the Eurozone.
Nine members from the Foreign Affairs Committee and the Security and Defence Subcommittee are in Kyiv and East Ukraine on a fact-finding trip to gather information on the ground about the current security crisis and to show their support to Ukraine. Upon arrival on February 1, MEPs will take stock of the military tensions in the Ukrainian border with Russia.
On Tuesday, MEPs from the Special Committee on Foreign Interference and Disinformation, in association with the Internal Market and Consumer Protection Committee, are to hear from the 2021 Nobel Peace Prize laureate, Maria A. Ressa, the journalist CEO of Rappler, the Philippine online news website, and discuss how to tackle disinformation and protect freedom of expression on online platforms.
French Presidency priorities
During the week, France’s ministers will continue presenting their priorities in a series of meetings with parliamentary committees. On Wednesday, the France’s Ministers for Transport and for Tourism, Jean-Baptiste Djebbari and Jean-Baptiste Lemoyne, will address the Committee on Transport and Tourism.
On Tuesday, the Civil Liberties Committee, Europol Deputy Executive Director Jürgen Ebner and the European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS) ,Wojciech Wiewiórowski, will review the recent data erasure order sent by the EDPS to the EU law enforcement agency. The order asks Europol to delete large quantities of data that it had stored and retained even though there was no established link to criminal activity.
Space and transport
On Wednesday, MEPs in the Transport Committee will hear the Execurive-Director of the European Union Agency for the Space Programme, Rodrigo da Costa, on the role space can play in enabling smart and green transport. The focus will be on the role of the space sector across the EU transport policies and the contribution that space solutions can offer to improve sustainability and safety in rail, road, maritime and aviation.
Also on Wednesday, the Economic Affairs Committee will hear from Eurogroup President Paschal Donohoe on the state of the Eurozone. MEPs are likely to raise questions about the reform of monetary and fiscal policies, EU member state public finances, inflation and the impact of national recovery plans.