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Parliamentary questions
16 April 2018
E-002135-18
Question for written answer
to the Commission
Rule 130
Sophia in 't Veld (ALDE) , Marietje Schaake (ALDE)

 Subject:  Agreements between the EU and MENA countries on the exchange of personal data between Europol and authorities responsible for combating serious crime and terrorism
 Answer(s) 

On 20 December 2017 the Commission recommended that the Council authorise the opening of negotiations to conclude agreements between the EU and eight MENA countries allowing the exchange of personal data between Europol and the respective authorities responsible for combating serious crime and terrorism(1).

— Will the Commission carry out impact assessments to examine in depth the risks posed by transfers of personal data to each third country as regards individuals’ rights to privacy and data protection, and also as regards other fundamental rights and freedoms protected by the Charter, so as to be able to define the precise safeguards necessary, as recommended by the EDPS?(2) If not, why not? — Does the Commission consider the levels of data protection and fundamental rights and freedoms in these countries high enough to serve as adequate safeguards in the context of law enforcement, given that the UN has pointed to grave deficiencies in respect for basic human rights in some of them?(3) — In 2015, Parliament requested the creation of an independent expert group to carry out a fundamental rights review of EU data collection instruments and programmes(4). Why does the Commission not await the review of Europol agreements with the Western Balkan countries and Ukraine before recommending negotiations with eight other countries, some of which have questionable human rights records?

(1) The eight countries in question are Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Egypt, Jordan, Israel, Lebanon and Turkey.
(2) https://edps.europa.eu/sites/edp/files/publication/18-03-19_opinion_international_agreements_europol_en.pdf
(3) The UN Committee against Torture has pointed to grave deficiencies in some of the eight countries in relation to reported cases of acts of torture and ill-treatment, the conditions of places of detention, the use of coerced evidence, and the lack of basic safeguards for detainees.
(4) https://etendering.ted.europa.eu/cft/cft-display.html?cftId=1831

Last updated: 4 May 2018Legal notice