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Sotscheck, Ralf

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3 articles of this author have been cited in the European Press Review so far.

Die Tageszeitung taz - Germany | 03/04/2008

Irish Prime Minister announces his resignation

Bertie Ahern's difficulties with his personal finances are trivial compared to those of other corrupt Irish politicians, writes Ralf Sotscheck, who points out: "In Brussels they will be delighted about his resignation. Ireland is the only country in the European Union which will put the Lisbon Treaty to referendum. It's true that all the parties, with the exception of Sinn Féin, are pushing for a 'yes' vote, but there was no telling what impact the scandal surrounding Ahern's finances would have on the results. The Irish already rejected the Treaty of Nice for reasons pertaining to domestic policy. In the second round Ahern got his way. Now his resignation paves the way for a 'yes' vote in the referendum scheduled for June."

Die Tageszeitung taz - Germany | 22/11/2007

The data protection scandal in Great Britain

"This makes a joke of data protection," comments Ralf Sotschek, pointing out that the spending cuts introduced by Gordon Brown when he was Chancellor of the Exchequer have put the tax authorities under too much pressure. Nonetheless, he concludes that the scandal has its positive side: "One positive aspect of the affair is that it will bolster the opposition to Labour's favourite project: the inclusion of biometric data on passports. Brown will stick to his plans: the information is in safe hands, he says, because together with new passports legislation will be passed under which officials could be sent to jail for up to two years for the 'unauthorised passing on' of data. Persons who tamper with the data either physically or electronically could face sentences of up to ten years in prison. These attempts at reassurance are laughable."

Die Tageszeitung taz - Germany | 18/07/2007

Tension between Great Britain and Russia

For Ralf Sotscheck the expulsion of Russian diplomats is an example of British "shop-window diplomacy": "Brown and his Foreign Secretary, David Miliband, are obliged to put on a fireworks display of initiatives during the first hundred days of their term in office to announce the arrival of a new era following Tony Blair's resignation. But the expulsion of diplomats is a blunt weapon. The alternative, already hinted at by Russia, would be to trade Lugovoi for London-based Russian dissident Boris Berezovsky, who is accused of money laundering and wants to topple the Russian government. However, Great Britain rejects this solution, arguing that Berezovsky wouldn't be given a fair trial in Moscow. But would Lugovoi be given a fair trial in Great Britain? After all, recent British history is peppered with cases of miscarriage of justice."

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