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Parliamentary questions
PDF 46kWORD 16k
20 May 2020
 E-001262/2020
Answer given by Ms Johansson
on behalf of the European Commission
Question reference: E-001262/2020

Search and rescue falls under the remit of the competent national authorities. All vessels sailing under the flag of an EU Member State are bound by the national law of the Member State concerned which, in accordance with international law, must ensure that persons rescued are brought to a place of safety. Member States must ensure that any vessel does not disembark in countries where this would amount to a violation of the principle of non-refoulement.

T he Member State coordinating the rescue is responsible for designating a place of safety where disembarkation can take place, in accordance with Regulation (EU) No 656/2014(1). The place of disembarkation is not necessarily situated in the Member State hosting that joint operation.

Status agreements are concluded by the EU with a third country in accordance with the provisions laid down in Article 218 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union to allow for the deployment by the European Border and Coast Guard Agency (Frontex) of border guards with executive powers on the territory of this third country.

The Commission has not submitted recommendations to the Council to authorise the opening of negotiations on status agreements with Turkey. The same applies to Senegal or any other African country.

As regards the geographical area of a joint operation, this is set out in the operational plan of each joint operation. As the Commission has no role in such decisions, Frontex has been asked to reply. The Agency’s reply will be sent by the Commission to the Honourable Member as soon as it is received.

(1)Regulation (EU) No 656 /2014  of the European Parliament and of the Council of 15 May 2014 establishing rules for the surveillance of the external sea borders in the context of operational cooperation coordinated by the European Agency for the Management of Operational Cooperation at the External Borders of the Member States of the European Union.
Regulation (EU) No 656 /2014  of the European Parliament and of the Council of 15 May 2014 establishing rules for the surveillance of the external sea borders in the context of operational cooperation coordinated by the European Agency for the Management of Operational Cooperation at the External Borders of the Member States of the European Union.
Regulation (EU) No 656 /2014  of the European Parliament and of the Council of 15 May 2014 establishing rules for the surveillance of the external sea borders in the context of operational cooperation coordinated by the European Agency for the Management of Operational Cooperation at the External Borders of the Member States of the European Union.
Regulation (EU) No 656 /2014  of the European Parliament and of the Council of 15 May 2014 establishing rules for the surveillance of the external sea borders in the context of operational cooperation coordinated by the European Agency for the Management of Operational Cooperation at the External Borders of the Member States of the European Union.
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