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The European Commission is in the middle of a transparency drive. So it is keen to keep quiet about a letter sent to the Swedish authorities early in October demanding an explanation for the release of sensitive information about an authorisation application for a genetically-modified crop. The Commission has given Sweden two months to respond. Legal action could follow, writes Stephen Gardner.

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Readers may be surprised to hear that the UK has already agreed the EU Reform Treaty (AKA the EU Constitution), writes Stephen Gardner. Or at least the UK government legal service has rubber-stamped it. All that remains now is for Gordon Brown and his peers from other member states to achieve political agreement.

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Ninety-five days and counting. No, not the time taken to form a new Belgian government (that's 112 days), but the period Gordon Brown has been in office without paying a courtesy visit to Brussels, writes Stephen Gardner.

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