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Parliamentary questions
PDF 105kWORD 19k
7 June 2018
E-003104-18
Question for written answer E-003104-18
to the Council
Rule 130
Josep-Maria Terricabras (Verts/ALE) , Jordi Solé (Verts/ALE) , Ramon Tremosa i Balcells (ALDE)

 Subject:  MEPs' right of access to prisons and detention centres without hindrance
 Answer in writing 

On 19 December 2017, seven MEPs were denied access to the Centro Penitenciario Madrid VII prison in Estremera, Spain, despite having asked for permission from all relevant authorities and having followed all necessary protocols. Their intention was to visit eight members of the Catalan Government and two social leaders who had been in prison without bail since 3 November and were awaiting trial.

This was in clear contrast with the visit that other MEPs were able to pay to the former President of Catalonia, Carles Puigdemont, in Neumünster prison, Germany, while he was briefly held there(1). These differences illustrate the wide disparity of approaches taken by the different Member States when determining the conditions under which MEPs, as elected representatives of European citizens, are granted access to penitentiary centres around the EU. It is worth mentioning that Parliament approved a resolution on prison systems and conditions in October 2017 calling on ‘Member States to allow MEPs the right of access to prisons and detention centres without hindrance’.(2)

Does the Council envisage taking any action vis-à-vis the Member States to ensure that MEPs can access all European prisons without hindrance and limitations?

(1)https://www.vilaweb.cat/noticies/former-slovenian-foreign-affairs-minister-visits-catalan-president-in-german-prison/
(2)Texts adopted, P8_TA(2017)0385.

Last updated: 23 July 2018Legal notice