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Parliamentary questions
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22 May 2018
Question for written answer P-002698-18
to the Commission
Rule 130
Helga Stevens (ECR)

 Subject:  RefuReturn project — European assistance from Frontex or other EU agencies
 Answer in writing 

Although their refugee status prohibits them from doing so, persons who have obtained such status in Europe have been observed making use of airports in different Member States to temporarily return to their country of origin. On the basis of Articles 14 and 19 of the Qualification Directive, such acts can lead to a withdrawal of refugee status. Therefore Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany are calling for enhanced checks and information‐sharing at EU level in the context of the RefuReturn project.

In this context, the Commission received a copy of the letter dated 8 March 2018 to the Presidency of the JHA Council signed by the Belgian State Secretary for Migration.

After a Belgian request to assume a proactive coordinating role, Frontex answered that ‘the hybrid return-asylum nature makes it difficult to engage Frontex in this action’.

1. Does the Commission believe, also in light of the agency’s increased budget and its strengthened mandate regarding return, that Frontex can play a leading role in enhancing such checks and information‐sharing?

2. If so, what legal basis allows for such an operation?

3. If not, which other European agencies or initiatives would the Commission deem better suited to support Member States and on what legal basis?

Last updated: 24 May 2018Legal notice