n The Parliament has 626 members, who serve a five-year term.
n The outgoing Parliament was divided into eight political groups, dominated by the Socialists with 214 seats, and the centre-right European People's Party, with 201 seats.
n The Parliament holds monthly week-long plenary sessions in Strasbourg, France. Most other activities, such as committee meetings and political group meetings, take place in Brussels.
n It was originally set up as a consultative assembly, but its powers have expanded so it now has the right to amend or veto legislation agreed by EU governments.
n It can also reject the EU budget, set up committees of inquiry, sack the EU's executive Commission and veto international agreements or block EU expansions.Reuse content