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Parliamentary questions
26 June 2015
Answer given by Mr Avramopoulos on behalf of the Commission

The Commission reiterates the original statement that the asylum-seekers and terrorists must not be placed in the same category.

The identification of persons trying to cross the external borders outside authorised border crossing points, be it persons looking for international protection or irregular migrants is an important and challenging task carried out by screening experts deployed by Member States at the external border. Having common rules on external borders control like foreseen in the Schengen area contributes to enhance the security.

Support is given to Member States amongst others through Europol, where the work of a Focal Point dealing with the facilitation of irregular migration has been reinforced. In addition, a dedicated maritime intelligence centre, the Joint Operation Team MARE is foreseen with the aim to contribute to close the existing intelligence gap by facilitating the exchange of information, operational cooperation and by identifying links between investigations in different Member States to better track criminal networks of migrant smugglers operating in the Mediterranean.

The fight against smuggling has been duly reflected upon in the Security Agenda, as adopted by the Commission on 28 April 2015(1) . It was also subject of the comprehensive European Agenda on Migration that the Commission adopted on 13 May 2015(2) and of the EU Action plan on migrant smuggling presented on 27 May 2015(3).

(1)COM(2015) 185 final.
(2)COM(2015) 240 final.
(3)COM(2015)285 final.

Last updated: 17 July 2015Legal notice