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Portal:European Union

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Introduction

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Flag of Europe.svg   Welcome to the European Union Portal!

The European Union (EU) is an economic and political union of 28 member states that are primarily located in Europe. The EU operates through a system of supranational independent institutions and intergovernmental negotiated decisions by the member states. Institutions of the EU include the European Commission, the Council of the European Union, the European Council, the Court of Justice of the European Union, the European Central Bank, the Court of Auditors, and the European Parliament. The European Parliament is elected every five years by EU citizens.

The EU traces its origins from the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC) and the European Economic Community (EEC), formed by the Inner Six countries in 1951 and 1958, respectively. In the intervening years, the community and its successors have grown in size by the accession of new member states and in power by the addition of policy areas to its remit. The Maastricht Treaty established the European Union under its current name in 1993. The latest major amendment to the constitutional basis of the EU, the Treaty of Lisbon, came into force in 2009.

Selected article

Chelsea defend corner.jpg

Chelsea Football Club are an English professional football club based in west London. Founded in 1905, they play in the FA Premier League and have spent most of their history in the top tier in English football. They have had two broad periods of success, one during the 1960s and early 1970s, and the second from the late 1990s to the present day. Chelsea have won three league titles, three FA Cups, three League Cups and two UEFA Cup Winners' Cups. During the 2005-06 season, they became Premier League champions for the second consecutive year.

Chelsea's home is the 42,055 capacity Stamford Bridge football stadium in Fulham, west London, where they have played since their foundation. Despite their name, the club are based just outside the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, in the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham. In 2003, the club was bought by Russian oil tycoon Roman Abramovich. The club's traditional kit colours are royal blue shirts and shorts with white socks. Their traditional crest is a ceremonial blue lion holding a staff; a modified version of this was adopted in 2005. Chelsea are one of the best-supported clubs in the UK, with an estimated fanbase of around four million.

Selected city

Valletta

Valletta, population 6,444 (2014), is the capital city of Malta. The whole city was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1980. The official name the Order of Saint John gave to the city was Humilissima Civitas Valletta — a city bound to humility. However, with the building of bastions, curtains and ravelins, along with the beauty of the baroque buildings along its streets, it became known as Superbissima — 'Most Proud', amongst the ruling houses of Europe. In Maltese it is known as Il-Belt, simply meaning "The City".

The foundation stone of Valletta was laid by the Grandmaster of the Order of Saint John, Jean Parisot de Valette, on 28 March 1566; The Order decided to found a new city on the Xiberras peninsula just after the end of the Great Siege of Malta in 1565, so as to fortify the Order's position in Malta, effectively binding the Knights to the island. The city was designed by Francesco Laparelli, while many of the most important buildings were built by Girolamo Cassar. Valletta, hence, is an urban area which boasts many buildings from the 16th century and onwards, but most of them were built during the time of the Knights of St. John of Jerusalem (the Knights Hospitaller, or Knights of Malta).

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