Former French president Nicolas Sarkozy is being questioned by corruption investigators. He is accused of accepting at least 50 million euros when he was French minister of the interior from Libyan dictator Muammar al-Gaddafi, and using them for election purposes. The accusations have been circulating for years, but now concrete evidence to back them up seems to have emerged. The press looks at the impact of the scandal.
On the fourth anniversary of Russia's annexation of Crimea on March 18 2014 the debate about the future of the Black Sea peninsula has reignited. To get Crimea back it's time to put diplomatic pressure on Moscow and think about a strategy for the post-Putin era, Ukrainian commentators urge. But not all observers believe such hopes are justified.
The data analysis firm Cambridge Analytica illegally used data from more than 50 million Facebook profiles for targeted ads in the US election campaign, according to the New York Times and The Guardian. Data abuse in election campaigns represents a real threat to democracy, commentators warn, and call for new rules for digital election advertising.
The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) has condemned Turkey over the jailing of two journalists. The plaintiffs Mehmet Altan and Şahin Alpay hope that this will pave the way for their permanent release because as a member of the Council of Europe Turkey is obliged to comply with the verdict. Commentators also hope that the ruling from Strasbourg marks a turning point.
The ride-sharing company Uber has temporarily suspended its tests with self-driving cars after one of the company's vehicles killed a pedestrian in the US. Computers behind the wheel are not ready for use on the roads yet, some commentators criticise. Others argue that human drivers pose a greater risk to safety.
Two months after the start of their military operations Turkish troops and allied rebels have captured the northern Syrian city of Afrin. The Kurdish YPG militia have retreated and tens of thousands have fled the city. Turkey has announced that it will now begin reconstruction work. But commentators remain sceptical and urge the EU to adopt a tougher stance towards Turkey.
Putin received roughly 77 percent of the vote in Sunday's presidential elections: his strongest performance so far and an absolute majority of the votes. Taken together the candidates of the patriotic-nationalist camp attained roughly 95 percent, with just 5 percent going to the liberals. But those who are surprised by the results don't understand a thing about Russia, commentators explain.
The EU and Britain have agreed on conditions for a transition period after the Brexit in March 2019. Britain must adhere to EU regulations for 21 months and may no longer participate in decision-making processes. In exchange access to the single market and the customs union as well as citizens' legal security are to be maintained. Is this a breakthrough in the negotiations?
A scandal has erupted in Lithuania over Mindaugas Bastys, a member of the country's parliament. It emerged that he had remained silent about having ties to a former KGB employee, which according to the Constitutional Court is unconstitutional. The parliament, however, voted to allow him to keep his mandate. The public is outraged, with thousands taking to the street to demand new elections. Are they right?
The Dutch will vote on Wednesday on a law that entered into force at the start of the year which allows the intelligence services to store and analyse citizens' communications data for up to three years. If 30 percent of the electorate votes against this the legislation will have to be renegotiated. Dutch commentators are glad to see the law being subjected to critical debate.
The scandal over the poisoning of former double agent Skripal has sparked a diplomatic crisis between London and Moscow. Russia has responded to the expulsion of 23 of its diplomats by not only sending British diplomats home, but also closing the British consulate general in Saint Petersburg. Is Europe on the verge of a new cold war?