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Data protection rules applicable to the European Parliament and to MEPs: Current regime and recent developments

20-06-2018

Data protection is a fundamental right enshrined in both primary and secondary EU law. More specifically, the main reference for data protection in Europe is the 2016 General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which is fully applicable since 25 May 2018. Moreover, specific data protection rules (currently Regulation 45/2001) apply to the EU institutions. The latter are under review, to adapt their principles and provisions to the GDPR. The processing of data relating to parliamentary activities is ...

Data protection is a fundamental right enshrined in both primary and secondary EU law. More specifically, the main reference for data protection in Europe is the 2016 General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which is fully applicable since 25 May 2018. Moreover, specific data protection rules (currently Regulation 45/2001) apply to the EU institutions. The latter are under review, to adapt their principles and provisions to the GDPR. The processing of data relating to parliamentary activities is therefore covered by these specific rules, as is personal data relating to, or processed by, Members of the European Parliament (MEPs). This Briefing provides an overview of the main provisions applicable to parliamentary activities and in particular to MEPs, taking account of the fact that the process of reforming the current rules has not been formally concluded (even if a political agreement has been reached between the co legislators). An update of this Briefing will be published in due course.

Towards a comprehensive EU protection system for minorities

30-08-2017

This study, commissioned by the European Parliament’s Policy Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs at the request of the LIBE Committee, examines the added value of developing a democratic rule of law and fundamental rights-based approach to the protection of minorities in the EU legal system, from an ‘intersectional’ viewpoint. It presents the state of play regarding the main challenges characterising the protection of ethnic, religious and linguistic minorities in a selection ...

This study, commissioned by the European Parliament’s Policy Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs at the request of the LIBE Committee, examines the added value of developing a democratic rule of law and fundamental rights-based approach to the protection of minorities in the EU legal system, from an ‘intersectional’ viewpoint. It presents the state of play regarding the main challenges characterising the protection of ethnic, religious and linguistic minorities in a selection of 11 European countries, in light of existing international and regional legal standards. Minority protection has been an EU priority in enlargement processes as a conditional criterion for candidate countries to accede to the Union. Yet a similar scrutiny mechanism is lacking after accession. The study puts forward several policy options to address this gap. It suggests specific ways in which a Union Pact for democracy, the rule of law and fundamental rights, could help to ensure a comprehensive EU approach to minority protection.

Autorzy zewnętrzni

Sergio CARRERA, CEPS(Coordinator), Brussels, Belgium Elspeth GUILD, CEPS, Brussels, Belgium Lina VOSYLIŪTĖ, CEPS, Brussels, Belgium Petra BARD, National Institute of Criminology/ Central European University (CEU)/ ELTE School of Law, Budapest, Hungary

In Pursuit of an International Investment Court. Recently Negotiated Investment Chapters in EU Comprehensive Free Trade Agreements in Comparative Perspective

04-07-2017

The study compares the revised and signed text of the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) with the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EUVFTA) and the EU Singapore Free Trade Agreement (EUSFTA) in respect of important procedural aspects relating to investor State dispute settlement. The findings are juxtaposed to the procedural rules governing the preliminary reference procedure and direct action (action for annulment) before the Court of Justice of the European Union as well as the individual ...

The study compares the revised and signed text of the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) with the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EUVFTA) and the EU Singapore Free Trade Agreement (EUSFTA) in respect of important procedural aspects relating to investor State dispute settlement. The findings are juxtaposed to the procedural rules governing the preliminary reference procedure and direct action (action for annulment) before the Court of Justice of the European Union as well as the individual application before the European Court of Human Rights. In doing so, it provides a tool and manual to evaluate the EU’s todays and future progress in reforming the international investment law regime. By outlining key features of the procedural frameworks governing two international courts, some ‘tried and tested’ concepts as source of inspiration for the possible design of a ‘multilateral investment court’ might be found.

Autorzy zewnętrzni

Prof. Dr. Steffen HINDELANG, LL.M., Department of Law, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany and Ass. iur. Teoman M. HAGEMEYER, Dipl. iur. oec., Ph.D. candidate at the Department of Law, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany

CIA renditions and secret detention programme

02-06-2016

The CIA's extraordinary rendition and secret detention programme has again come under the scrutiny of the European Parliament, which will ask the Commission and the Council during the June plenary about the measures taken to implement Parliament's recommendations on the matter.

The CIA's extraordinary rendition and secret detention programme has again come under the scrutiny of the European Parliament, which will ask the Commission and the Council during the June plenary about the measures taken to implement Parliament's recommendations on the matter.

Parliamentary Immunity in Italy

01-10-2015

This in-depth analysis was commissioned by the policy department on citizens' rights and constitutional affairs at the request of the JURI committee. It proposes to view the legal basis and practical developments of parliamentary privilege in Italy, providing an insight into the peculiarities of the country’s experience, with reference also to recent cases.

This in-depth analysis was commissioned by the policy department on citizens' rights and constitutional affairs at the request of the JURI committee. It proposes to view the legal basis and practical developments of parliamentary privilege in Italy, providing an insight into the peculiarities of the country’s experience, with reference also to recent cases.

Autorzy zewnętrzni

Marco Cerase

Parliamentary Immunity in a European Context

01-10-2015

This in-depth analysis was commissioned by the policy department on citizens' rights and constitutional affairs at the request of the JURI committee. It examines the case law of the European Court of Human Rights and the Court of Justice of the European Union on the matter of parliamentary immunity. From this case law, it derives the conclusion that both courts are developing a ‘functional approach’ towards parliamentary immunity. It explains the meaning of this approach both for national systems ...

This in-depth analysis was commissioned by the policy department on citizens' rights and constitutional affairs at the request of the JURI committee. It examines the case law of the European Court of Human Rights and the Court of Justice of the European Union on the matter of parliamentary immunity. From this case law, it derives the conclusion that both courts are developing a ‘functional approach’ towards parliamentary immunity. It explains the meaning of this approach both for national systems of parliamentary immunity and for that of the European Parliament.

Autorzy zewnętrzni

Sascha Hardt

A Quest for Accountability? EU and Member State Inquiries into the CIA Rendition and Secret Detention Programme

15-09-2015

At the request of the LIBE Committee, this study assesses the extent to which EU Member States have delivered accountability for their complicity in the US CIA-led extraordinary rendition and secret detention programme and its serious human rights violations. It offers a scoreboard of political inquiries and judicial investigations in supranational and national arenas in relation to Italy, Lithuania, Poland, Romania and the United Kingdom. The study takes as a starting point two recent and far-reaching ...

At the request of the LIBE Committee, this study assesses the extent to which EU Member States have delivered accountability for their complicity in the US CIA-led extraordinary rendition and secret detention programme and its serious human rights violations. It offers a scoreboard of political inquiries and judicial investigations in supranational and national arenas in relation to Italy, Lithuania, Poland, Romania and the United Kingdom. The study takes as a starting point two recent and far-reaching developments in delivering accountability and establishing the truth: the publication of the executive summary of the US Senate Intelligence Committee (Feinstein) Report and new European Court of Human Rights judgments regarding EU Member States’ complicity with the CIA. The study identifies significant obstacles to further accountability in the five EU Member States under investigation: notably the lack of independent and effective official investigations and the use of the ‘state secrets doctrine’ to prevent disclosure of the facts, evade responsibility and hinder redress to the victims. The study puts forward a set of policy recommendations for the European Parliament to address these obstacles to effective accountability.

Autorzy zewnętrzni

Didier Bigo (King’s College, London, the UK ; Science Po, Paris, France ; Centre for Study of Conflicts, Liberty and Security), Sergio Carrera (Centre for European Policy Studies - CEPS ; University of Maastricht, the Netherlands), Elspeth Guild (Centre for European Policy Studies - CEPS ; Radboud University Nijmegen and Queen Mary, University of London, the UK) and Raluca Radescu (Centre for European Policy Studies - CEPS)

Bosnia and Herzegovina: The 'Sejdić-Finci' case

12-06-2015

Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) was identified as a potential candidate for EU membership in 2003. In order to join the EU, BiH has to meet the EU's human-rights criteria, among others. To this end, the execution of the Sejdić-Finci judgment of the European Court of Human Rights is a key prerequisite as it promotes equal political rights for all BiH citizens. Its implementation would not mean automatic accession to the EU, but would be a significant step in that direction. Since the judgment's delivery ...

Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) was identified as a potential candidate for EU membership in 2003. In order to join the EU, BiH has to meet the EU's human-rights criteria, among others. To this end, the execution of the Sejdić-Finci judgment of the European Court of Human Rights is a key prerequisite as it promotes equal political rights for all BiH citizens. Its implementation would not mean automatic accession to the EU, but would be a significant step in that direction. Since the judgment's delivery in 2009, however, little has been done to address this complex issue.

Press freedom in the EU: Legal framework and challenges

30-04-2015

Freedom of expression and information, as well as the freedom of the press, which provides the most powerful platform for the first two, contribute significantly to the formation of public opinion, thus allowing people to make informed choices in their political decisions. These freedoms are therefore essential for democracy, which is one of the fundamental values common to all Member States, on which the European Union is founded (Article 2 TEU). Within the EU legal framework, press freedom is a ...

Freedom of expression and information, as well as the freedom of the press, which provides the most powerful platform for the first two, contribute significantly to the formation of public opinion, thus allowing people to make informed choices in their political decisions. These freedoms are therefore essential for democracy, which is one of the fundamental values common to all Member States, on which the European Union is founded (Article 2 TEU). Within the EU legal framework, press freedom is a fundamental right established in the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights, with its provision closely resembling that on press freedom in the European Convention on Human Rights. At EU level media freedom was long dealt with purely relative to the Single Market, and thus from a rather economic point of view. However, the Court of Justice of the EU (CJEU), for its part, started to see the importance of media pluralism very early, not only for the free movement of services across the EU but also in order to ensure a pluralism in views. The Court's rulings underlined the importance of media pluralism and media freedom not only for the internal market but also for democracy in the EU. The European Parliament has repeatedly advocated press freedom and media pluralism in the EU and abroad. It has recently addressed the issue of the effectiveness of press freedom as an EU fundamental right and an objective EU value, in view of the scarce possibility for the EU institutions to act to enforce respect for EU fundamental rights and values by Member States.

Background Information for the LIBE Delegation to Italy on the Situation of Prisons - 26-28 March 2014

14-03-2014

Upon request by the LIBE Committee, this internal note provides background information for the delegation of the Committee on civil liberties, justice and home affairs (LIBE) to Italy on the situation of prisons on 26-28 March 2014. After a preliminary overview of some initiatives on detention conditions at EU level (by the European Parliament and the European Commission), the note analyses the Italian situation regarding overcrowding of prisons and conditions of detention, defined by the Council ...

Upon request by the LIBE Committee, this internal note provides background information for the delegation of the Committee on civil liberties, justice and home affairs (LIBE) to Italy on the situation of prisons on 26-28 March 2014. After a preliminary overview of some initiatives on detention conditions at EU level (by the European Parliament and the European Commission), the note analyses the Italian situation regarding overcrowding of prisons and conditions of detention, defined by the Council of Europe and the European Court of Human Rights as inhuman and degrading treatment in some cases. The note also refers to recent Italian legislative and jurisprudential developments, whose effects on the situation of prisons have yet to be determined.

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