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Tell Me Why?

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What is the European Union?


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The European Union (EU) is an international economic and political confederation of European nations. It presently consists of twenty seven member states - democratic European countries. Its goals include a single economic community, social and political cooperation among its members. This also entails an integration and strengthening of a common foreign, security and defense policy, as well as, that of internal affairs (home affairs) and justice. As such, the EU is the largest economic and political entity in the world which has a single developed market with a common trade policy. In addition, the EU has implemented an Economic and Monetary Union (EMU). In January 2002, the organization introduced a single currency, the euro that aimed to replace all its members national currencies. Presently, not all members are yet using the euro. The EU has also its own anthem, founding date and flag (shown above) - a blue background consisting of 12 five-pointed gold stars arranged in a circle, representing the union of the peoples of Europe. The EU is therefore described as a supranational organization.

The European Union was originally known as the European Community (EC) or European Economic Community (EEC) which was created after World War II to unite the nations of Europe economically that is committed to working together for peace and prosperity thus avoiding another war. The EU was founded 1 November 1993 under that name by the Treaty on European Union (commonly known as the Maastricht Treaty) in 1993. Thus, the Maastricht Treaty transformed the EC into the EU. However, there were several series of cooperative predecessor organizations in Europe that existed in the 1950’s before the EU.

The EU decision-making process involves several institutions such as the: European Council, Council of Ministers, European Commission, European Parliament, European Court of Justice, Court of First Instance, Court of Auditors, Economic and Social Committee and Committee of the Regions.

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What is the Purpose of the United Nations?

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