Jasenko SELIMOVIC : Written explanations of vote 

Members can submit a written explanation of their vote in plenary. Rule 183

European Social Fund Plus (ESF+) (A8-0461/2018 - Verónica Lope Fontagné)  

The European Social Fund Plus (ESF+) is of utmost importance for strengthening social cohesion, boosting unemployment and youth employment, but also helping address social challenges across the Union. The ESF+ will be more flexible, provide a better response in emergencies, it will assist in integrating migrants and reducing the administrative obstacles in the use of this fund. The ESF+ will help the EU to better tackle upcoming social, economic and labour market challenges. The fund will invest in social innovation, mobility, health and young people and will foster social inclusion and migrant integration and I am therefore convinced it will benefit millions of Europeans.

Listing the third countries whose nationals must be in possession of visas when crossing the external borders and those whose nationals are exempt from that requirement (Kosovo) (A8-0261/2016 - Tanja Fajon)  

It is important to reduce restrictions regarding visa liberalization and to enable citizen of third countries, such as Kosovo, to travel free within the European Union. Kosovo has already last year fulfilled all the necessary conditions for the visa liberalisation, but their citizens still remain the only ones in the Western Balkans who cannot travel freely to the European Union. I ask the Council to grant the citizens of Kosovo visa free travel without further delay.

Decision establishing a European Peace Facility (A8-0157/2019 - Hilde Vautmans)  

. ‒ I support the report on the European peace facility (EPF) as it enables the Union to support military and defence operations in more flexible and effective ways. The EPF will help the European Union fulfil its role as a global actor and pursue a more concrete EU foreign policy. It will also increase the efficiency and flexibility of the EU’s external action as well as strengthen the EU’s security and development connection towards achieving sustainable peace.

EU-Uzbekistan comprehensive agreement (A8-0149/2019 - David McAllister)  

The Cooperation Agreement between the EU and Uzbekistan will strengthen the parties relations based on common values and recognise Uzbekistan’s role as a significant cultural and political bridge between Europe and Asia. In addition, this agreement will support Uzbekistan’s political and social rights. It will pressure the Uzbek government to ensure that human rights defenders, civil society, international monitors and human rights organizations can work freely in a legal and politically secure environment. I therefore support this report calling for it.

Continuation of ongoing learning mobility activities under the Erasmus+ programme in the context of the UK's withdrawal from the EU (A8-0082/2019 - Bogdan Andrzej Zdrojewski)  

. ‒ I voted in favour of this report because it supports contingency measures for the Erasmus+ programme in the event of a no-deal Brexit. It is extremely important to ensure that people participating in Erasmus+ can complete their exchange programme without interruption, without losing credits and with continued financial support in the case of no withdrawal agreement between the EU and the UK at the point of the UK’s departure.

EU-Afghanistan Cooperation Agreement on Partnership and Development (A8-0026/2019 - Anna Elżbieta Fotyga)  

. ‒ The Cooperation Agreement on Partnership and Development between the European Union and Afghanistan is crucial for Afghanistan’s future development. This cooperation will strengthen the historical, political and economic ties between the two parties. It will also provide for the possibility of cooperation in a wide-range of areas, including development, trade, investment, justice and the rule of law. It will also provide for the possibility to fight against organised crime and money laundering, and counter narcotics, for cooperation on migration and a potential future readmission agreement, and sectoral cooperation. This cooperation will also enable the EU to address global challenges such as nuclear security together with Afghanistan and this is crucial for both parties, therefore I supported this report.

Visa Information System (A8-0078/2019 - Carlos Coelho)  

The amendments proposed in this report will improve and harmonise the processing of visa applications. An upgrade of the VIS will give us a better chance to evolve security and migratory challenges and improve the Union’s external border management. This should be done by enabling more thorough background checks on visa application, closing security information deficiencies through better exchange of information between EU countries and ensuring full interoperability with other databases across the EU. This report calls for the recordings in the VIS system to be automatically checked against all other EU information systems for security and migration, which will provide the Union a better safety.

Asylum and Migration Fund (A8-0106/2019 - Miriam Dalli)  

It is crucial for the EU to have a fund that finances the important area of asylum and migration. This fund will support Member States’ efforts in the field of asylum, legal migration and external borders, and countering irregular migration and returns. It will also provide the Member States the right tools to effectively manage migration from all aspects. This fund will ensure that EU countries fulfil their obligations to people who need international protection and at the same time make sure that they facilitate the return for those who have no right to stay in EU countries.

Association Agreement between the EU and Monaco, Andorra and San Marino (A8-0074/2019 - Juan Fernando López Aguilar)  

The association agreement between the EU and Monaco, Andorra and San Marino is important for all parties. The countries have shown a strong political, economic and cultural European calling and a strong desire to pursue closer political, economic and cultural relations with the EU. It is vital to respond positive to this calling in an appropriate way and to enable the rapid conclusion of negotiations on the new association agreement, which will form the new framework for relations between the EU and these countries. Further, Monaco, Andorra and San Marino provide employment opportunities for a considerable number of EU citizens.
A closer cooperation between the countries’ and the EU would provide all parties with an important opportunity for further economic development.

EU-Turkmenistan Partnership and Cooperation Agreement (A8-0072/2019 - Ramona Nicole Mănescu)  

. ‒ The Cooperation Agreement between the EU and Turkmenistan will enable the relationship between the parties in significant ways and it will support the promotion of human rights in Turkmenistan. Furthermore, this agreement will support Turkmenistan’s economic, political, and social rights. It will let EU provide support in order to develop civil society in practice, but also to help with drafting legislation that follows these goals.