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Macron's letter to Europeans and patient cleared of AIDS-causing virus | Europe briefing

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Macron's letter to Europeans and patient cleared of AIDS-causing virus | Europe briefing
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1. Macron's letter to Europeans

French President Emmanuel Macron addressed Europeans in a manifesto ahead of May's European elections, calling for an EU Renaissance.

He proposed a series of reforms, telling citizens: "Never, since the Second World War, has Europe been as essential. Yet never has Europe been in so much danger.

"Brexit stands as the symbol of that. It symbolises the crisis of Europe, which has failed to respond to its peoples’ needs for protection from the major shocks of the modern world. It also symbolises the European trap. The trap is not being part of the European Union."

READ MORE: A shortened version of Macron's letter

Get more on this story by clicking on the player above.

2. Second patient cleared of AIDS-causing virus

A London man appears to be free of the AIDS virus after a stem cell transplant, the second case where the disease seems to be have been eliminated in a patient by the treatment, doctors reported.

The therapy had an early success with Timothy Ray Brown, an American man treated in Germany who is 12 years post-transplant and still free of HIV. Until now, Brown is the only person thought to have been cured of infection with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS.

Such transplants are dangerous and have failed in other patients. They're also impractical to try to cure the millions already infected.

READ MORE: Man in London believed to be second patient to be free of AIDS-causing virus

3. Germany proposes new laws for IS and other fighters

Germany is to introduce new legislation to remove citizenship from dual-nationals who fight for the self-styled Islamic State (IS) and other terrorist groups.

To date, German nationals could only have their citizenship stripped if they joined foreign armed forces without the government’s permission. Now the German government has decided to extend the legislation to cover German citizens who travel to fight on behalf of a terror militia.

But the proposed new law from Chancellor Angela Merkel’s government is attracting criticism from all sides. Some argue that it is too little too late: it will not be retroactively applied to Germans already in custody or in refugee camps in Syria.

READ MORE: Germany proposes new laws on terror fighters - but those already in custody will not be covered

4. Irish EPP source says party 'fears the knock-on effect' if Orban is expelled

An Irish EPP source told Euronews' Europe Correspondent Shona Murray they fear the knock-on effect if Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban is expelled from the party.

“One thing we have to bear in mind is that expulsion could cause Fidesz to team up with the PiS (Poland's ruling conservative party Law and Justice), Salvini, the Slovenians and maybe others. This could be a powerful block,” they said.

There are "real fears" within the party that Fidesz has a greater chance of teaming up with Italy’s far-right Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini and other Eurosceptic factions.

“The Tories left the EPP and joined ECR. This was bad — they got more and more Eurosceptic once they were no longer exposed to the mainstream,” they added.

READ MORE: Hungary's Fidesz party faces expulsion from European People's Party

5. Potential border raises fears on island of Ireland

There are hundreds of border crossings between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

There are more crossings between these two countries than the entire eastern flank of the European Union.

It has hundreds of roadways, there are waterways and there are even roads that criss-cross between the two and the only way you can tell where you are is by the colour of the road signs.

But all of that could be about to change over the next few weeks depending on how Brexit goes. This could be a new customs frontier for the European Union and that could cause trouble for the peace process and some people are very worried.

READ MORE: A return to 'the Troubles?' Potential Irish border raises fears on both sides

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