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EDITIONS
Nice summit glossary Monday, 22 July, 2002, 09:21 GMT 10:21 UK
BBC News Online untangles the jargon and acronyms that all to often accompany media coverage of the European Union and its affairs. Click on the headlines for explanations.

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Charter of Fundamental Rights
The charter recognises a number of rights - such as freedom of speech and fair working conditions - but will not be incorporated into European law.
Closer co-operation
Also known as reinforced or enhanced co-operation, it allows some countries to forge ahead on certain issues, giving rise to fears of a 'two-speed' Europe.
Council of Ministers
The council directly represents the EU's member governments in a "cabinet of cabinets".
Enlargement
Twelve countries are negotiating their membership of the EU - but all must pass strict tests before being allowed in.
Euro
After 20 years in the making, the single European currency now exists, but it has had a tough start.
European Central Bank
The European Central Bank is responsible for the launch of the euro and European monetary policy.
European Commission
The executive body of the EU consists of 20 commissioners and is the driving force behind new legislation.
European Court of Auditors
The court is the "financial conscience" of the European Union, tracking the management of EU money.
European Court of Justice
The judicial institution of the EU, founded in 1952, its job is to monitor the even interpretation of European law across the union.
European Parliament
The parliament is the only directly elected body in the European Union and the only elected international assembly in the world.
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IGC
An Intergovernmental Conference is a long-running conference between the governments of EU countries.
Member states
There are currently 15 member states - but membership negotiations have begun with another 12.
Presidency
The presidency of the Council of Ministers rotates every six months.
Qualified majority voting
Most decisions in the EU are taken by majority voting - but enlargement means the system must be overhauled.
Rapid reaction force
Steps are being taken to create a European force of 60,000 troops by 2003.
Reweighting of votes
This is the proposal to change the number of votes each country has in the Council of Ministers to reflect population size.
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Social Europe
The EU social agenda on employment and equality was adopted at the 2000 Nice summit.
Treaty of Rome
Signed in 1957, it is one of Europe's founding treaties and has been amended several times.
Unanimity
Unanimity is used in the Council of Ministers for decisions which are nationally sensitive like taxation, defence and social policy.
Veto
The veto is a way of keeping national sovereignty over sensitive areas of decision-making.
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