News / Europe

Slovakia Puts Off Crucial Bailout Fund Vote

Slovakia's Prime Minister Iveta Radicova holds a speech during a Parliament session during which the lawmakers will vote on the approval for more money for the EU bailout fund in Bratislava, Slovakia, October 11, 2011.
Slovakia's Prime Minister Iveta Radicova holds a speech during a Parliament session during which the lawmakers will vote on the approval for more money for the EU bailout fund in Bratislava, Slovakia, October 11, 2011.

Slovakia has become the only European Union country to reject a crucial bailout fund for debt-strapped countries.  Slovakian lawmakers are expected vote again on the measure even as the fallout of Europe's high debt continues to spread, with tens of thousands of people protesting austerity measures in France.  

After 10 hours of debate, Slovakian lawmakers failed to approve a measure to expand the E.U. bailout fund.  The fund aims to help shaky economies like Greece and help stop a growing sovereign debt and banking crisis that threatens to spread well beyond Europe's borders.

European Union leaders had approved the measure in July.  But it needs to be ratified by the parliaments of all 17 countries sharing the euro currency to go into effect.  Sixteen countries have done so to date.  Slovakia is the last holdout.

But news services report the measure is expected to be approved in a second vote, with support from opposition lawmakers.

Slovaks generally look favorably on the European Union.  But Slovakia is one of Europe's poorest nations, and many of its citizens are unhappy about paying for what they consider are their free-spending counterparts in Greece.

But Slovakia Prime Minister Iveta Radicova argues the very survival of the eurozone is at stake.  She has also linked the parliament's vote to her own government's survival.

Slovakia is not the only nation grumbling about the bailout fund.

Many people in the Netherlands and Germany also opposed the measure.  For their part, many analysts say Europe must take more far-reaching measures to tackle the spreading debt crisis.

Meanwhile, austerity measures adopted by a number of European countries to tackle the crisis have sparked strikes and protests.  Tens of thousands of French were on the streets of Paris and other cities across France, demonstrating Tuesday against government cutbacks.

Fifty-nine-year-old French teacher Jean Carroy joined the march through the capital.

Carroy believes there must be other ways to resolve the debt crisis than cutting government spending.  He says the government's budget plans to slice thousands of teaching positions across the country.

Social worker Melanie Zede also joined the demonstration with her nine-year-old daughter Ines.

Zede says she sees people have less and less money and means to survive.  She blames both the eurozone crisis and bad choices by the conservative government of President Nicolas Sarkozy.

The government cutbacks come as Mr. Sarkozy faces a tough re-election next year.  His popularity has hovered at record lows for months.

You May Like

Video Miami Cubans Divided on New US Policy

While older, more conservative Cuban Americans have promoted anti-Castro political movement for years, younger generations say economically, it is time for change More

2014 Sees Dramatic Uptick in Boko Haram Abductions

Militants suspected in latest mass kidnapping of over 100 people in Gumsuri, Nigeria on Sunday More

Video Cuba Deal Is Major Victory for Pope

Role of Francis hailed throughout US, Latin America - though some Cuban-American Catholics have mixed feelings More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacksi
X
December 19, 2014 12:45 AM
The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. VOA reporter Ayaz Gul visited the devastated school and attended the funeral of the principal who courageously tried to save her students from the deadly attack.
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Putin Says Russian Economy Will Emerge Stronger

Russian President Vladimir Putin has said his country's sinking economy will not only recover but also become stronger, despite falling oil prices and Western sanctions over Ukraine. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports.
Video

Video Detained Turkish Journalists Follow Teachings of US-Based Preacher

The Turkish government’s jailing of critical journalists has sparked international condemnation and is being seen as an effort to undermine the followers of an ailing Turkish preacher based in the United States. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video ‘Anti-Islamization’ Marches Increase Tensions In Germany

Anti-immigrant rallies in Germany have been building in recent weeks, peaking Monday night in the city of Dresden where tens of thousands of people turned out to demonstrate against what they call the ‘Islamization’ of the West. Germany has offered asylum to more Syrian refugees than any other country, and this appears to have set off the protests. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.
Video

Video Refugees Living in Kenya Long for Peace in the Home Countries

Kenya is host to numerous refugees seeking safe haven from conflict. Immigrants from Somalia face challenges in their new lives in Kenya. Ahead of International Migrants Day (December 18) Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.

All About America

AppleAndroid