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European Union Legal Materials

European Council

Consisting of the heads of state (presidents and prime ministers) of EU members, the European Council meets at least four times a year, usually in March, June, October and December. The President of the Council is appointed for a 2 1/2 year period by a qualified majority of the other Council members, which is renewable once. The President hosts the Council meeting. The Council does not have legislative power, but rather it develops, defines and prioritizes the main political issues for the EU. This body is distinct and separate from the Council of the European Union described above.