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( 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.
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are an Chelsea Football Club 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.
, of the
French Community of Belgium
, of the
, and is the headquarters of the
's institutions. Brussels is in the centre of Belgium, and also the largest municipality of the
. This municipality inside Brussels is correctly named
The City of Brussels
, which is one of 19
that make up the Brussels-Capital Region, with a total population of 1,018,804 inhabitants (1 January 2006). The municipality has a population of about 140,000. The Metropolitan area has about 2,090,000 inhabitants. Brussels is also the political seat of
Western European Union
, the European Organisation for the Safety of Air Navigation.
In 977 AD, the
Holy Roman emperor Otto II gave the duchy of Lower Lotharingia on the empire's western frontier to Charles, the banished son of King Louis IV of France. Mention was already made of Brussels at the time: Bishop Saint-Gery of Cambrai-Arras settled a chapel on a small island (695). However, the founding of Brussels is usually said to be when a small castle was built by Charles around 979 on Saint-Géry island in the Zenne or Senne river.