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Parliamentary questions
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5 January 2021
E-005917/2020(ASW)
Answer given by Ms Johansson
on behalf of the European Commission
Question reference: E-005917/2020

Taking action to combat child sexual abuse is a priority for the Commission, as highlighted also in its strategy for a more effective fight against child sexual abuse(1). As part of this strategy, the Commission will propose a long-term legislative proposal in the first half of 2021(2) to tackle child sexual abuse online effectively.

Article 7 of Directive 2011/93/EU(3) already criminalises inciting or aiding and abetting to commit child sexual abuse, child sexual exploitation and child pornography offences. Also, Article 21(1) of that directive requires Member States to prevent or prohibit the dissemination of material advertising the opportunity to commit child sexual abuse offences. To ensure the full implementation of the directive, in 2019, the Commission launched infringement procedures against several Member States. In parallel to these enforcement efforts, the Commission will conduct a study to identify legislative and implementation gaps, good practices and priority actions at EU level, to assess whether the present framework established by the directive is fit for purpose. The study will also take into account existing national laws in the area, including those in the Netherlands. In addition, the Commission will present, by the end of March 2021, a comprehensive strategy on the rights of the child, which will include, amongst others, actions to protect vulnerable children, protect their rights online, and prevent and combat violence against children.

(1)Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions, EU strategy for a more effective fight against child sexual abuse, Brussels, 24.7.2020 COM(2020) 607 final.
(2)Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions, Commission Work Programme 2021: A Union of vitality in a world of fragility, Brussels, 19.10.2020 COM(2020) 690 final.
(3)Directive 2011/93/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 13 December 2011 on combating the sexual abuse and sexual exploitation of children and child pornography, and replacing Council Framework Decision 2004/68/JHA, OJ L 335, 17.12.2011, p. 1‐14.
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