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UK referendum - the BBC wants expat views

4801British Prime Minister David Cameron is to hold a referendum on the UK's membership of the European Union.

Cameron has said he is determined to deliver reform of the EU for the British people so they get a proper choice in a referendum on whether to stay in, or leave the union.

Portugal's political crisis - as viewed from California

lisbon2The recent Portuguese election on October 4th was "inconclusive". The center-right scored the most votes but could not muster a coalition majority.

A coalition of leftist parties could form a government, but the president of Portugal (a largely symbolic position except in cases like these) refused to appoint a leftist prime minister on the grounds that they represent anti-European forces. Instead the president allowed the pro-EU Prime Minister to stay in place.

'Fed up with politics - distrustful of politicians of all parties'

antoniocosta3Amid the mass of coverage in the media here and abroad, about the only thing clear at the moment is that the interests of the majority of voters in this month’s general election are not being best served with the prospect of either a minority centre-right government or a left-wing alliance of unlikely bedfellows.

Things may become clearer – or even more confused – when the incumbent minority seeks a vote of confidence in parliament in the next few days.

The European Union Referendum and YOU

Harry ShindlerThe Committee stage debate in the House of Lords begins on October 28th. Harry Shindler writes urging every British Citizen to lobby MPs and members of the House of Lords.

Socialist leader needs 'a Martian invasion' before supporting coalition

martianOh for some help from outer space! More than two weeks after the general election, Portugal will still be in the awkward position of not knowing who is to form the next government.

How much easier it would have been if a group of extraterrestrials had landed last week. They would have provided a handy solution to the conundrum created by voters on 4th October.

710,000 refugees enter Europe in first nine months of 2015

refugeesThe total number of migrants who crossed the EU’s external borders in the first nine months of this year rose to more than 710,000 with the Greek islands on the Aegean continuing to be the most affected by the unprecedented inflow of people. This compares with 282,000 recorded in all of last year.

In the month of September, the number of detections at EU’s external borders stood at 170,000 last month compared to 190,000 recorded in August.

They heard us! - the EU Referendum Bill update

They heard us! - the EU Referendum Bill updateThank you to all who lobbied the House of Lords before the October 13th debate on the EU Referendum Bill. The issue of voting rights for EU citizens and UK expats is still firmly on the agenda thanks to your work and the work of New Europeans.

It was debated in the House of Lords (see extracts from House of Lords briefing HERE)

Winter Fuel Payments. Letter to Cameron and 'DWP deception exposed'

iceThis is an open letter to British Prime Minister from expat Roger Boaden MBE about the deception used to canncel winter fuel payments for many expats in Europe.

"Dear Prime Minister

On 26th March on television you said: “Treating people with dignity and security in their old age after a full working life is one of the most important things we can do as a country and that’s why I’ve been so clear that pensioner benefits like the free TV licences, the free prescriptions, the Winter Fuel Payments - they will continue for everybody! I think it should be your right and I think we need to make that very clear.”