Glossary:European Parliament (EP)

The European Parliament, abbreviated as EP, is the only directly elected body of the European Union (EU). Together with the Council of the European Union, it forms the bicameral legislative branch of the EU's institutions. The Parliament is composed of members, who are directly elected every five years by voters in the Member States.


It has had control over all areas of the EU budget (except for agriculture) since the 1970s and has a veto over the appointment of the European Commission.

The European Parliament has two meeting places:

  • Strasbourg (FR), the official seat, where 12 four-day plenary sessions per year are held throughout the year;
  • Brussels (BE), which serves for committee meetings, political groups and complementary plenary sessions.

The Secretariat, or Parliament's administrative body, is based in Luxembourg (LU).


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