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Policy Departments’ Monthly Highlights - October 2021

13-10-2021

The Monthly Highlights publication provides an overview, at a glance, of the on-going work of the policy departments, including a selection of the latest and forthcoming publications, and a list of future events.

The Monthly Highlights publication provides an overview, at a glance, of the on-going work of the policy departments, including a selection of the latest and forthcoming publications, and a list of future events.

The Human Right to Drinking Water: Impact of large-scale agriculture and industry

30-09-2021

Access to safe drinking water is a human right. It is indispensable to a healthy, dignified and productive life. However, a significant proportion of the global population is not able to enjoy this human right. The purpose of this in-depth analysis is to consider the impacts of large-scale agricultural activity and industry on the progressive realisation of the human right to drinking water. In particular, it considers how the European Union and the European Parliament can better support non-EU countries ...

Access to safe drinking water is a human right. It is indispensable to a healthy, dignified and productive life. However, a significant proportion of the global population is not able to enjoy this human right. The purpose of this in-depth analysis is to consider the impacts of large-scale agricultural activity and industry on the progressive realisation of the human right to drinking water. In particular, it considers how the European Union and the European Parliament can better support non-EU countries to realise this human right. States and businesses have obligations and responsibilities towards citizens to ensure safe drinking water. However, fulfilling these obligations and responsibilities is in contention with competing water uses and economic considerations and marred by poor enabling environments and power dynamics. Achieving the human right to drinking water needs to be considered in the context of trade-offs emerging from the water-food-energy nexus where water use in one sector can have impacts on others. Virtual water embedded in the trade of agricultural goods demonstrates that demand for food can affect local water availability, posing challenges to ensuring the human right to drinking water in these places. Existing good practices focus on better recognition of obligations and responsibilities through a human rights-based approach, improved assessments of impacts, enhanced stakeholder engagement and mechanisms for due diligence. There are opportunities for the EU to extend the discussion on the human right to drinking water with other interlinked rights, noting the complex and integrated impacts of water resources.

Ekstern forfatter

• Dr Naho MIRUMACHI • Dr Aleksandra DUDA • Jagoda GREGULSKA • Joanna SMĘTEK

International Agreements in Progress - After Cotonou: Towards a new agreement with the African, Caribbean and Pacific states

21-09-2021

After two years of negotiations, the text of a renewed partnership agreement between the European Union (EU) and the African, Caribbean, and Pacific (ACP) states was initialled in April 2021. The current partnership agreement (‘Cotonou’) was due to expire in February 2020. The then ACP Group of States – which later became the Organisation of the ACP States (OACPS) – and the EU started negotiations on a 'post-Cotonou' agreement in September 2018. The EU and the OACPS agreed on the principle of a common ...

After two years of negotiations, the text of a renewed partnership agreement between the European Union (EU) and the African, Caribbean, and Pacific (ACP) states was initialled in April 2021. The current partnership agreement (‘Cotonou’) was due to expire in February 2020. The then ACP Group of States – which later became the Organisation of the ACP States (OACPS) – and the EU started negotiations on a 'post-Cotonou' agreement in September 2018. The EU and the OACPS agreed on the principle of a common foundation complemented by three regional protocols. The multi-level negotiations, the coronavirus crisis and difficulties in reaching agreement on sensitive issues, such as migration management and sexual and reproductive health and rights, prevented the new agreement from being finalised by the initial expiry date set in the Cotonou Agreement. Thus, to avoid a legal vacuum in relations, the provisions of that agreement were extended until the end of 2021. The European Parliament insisted on maintaining the ACP-EU joint parliamentary assembly and was successful in this endeavour; in addition, three regional parliamentary assemblies will be created in the future institutional set-up of the partnership. The new agreement still needs to be signed by the parties, and further legal procedures will be required before it can be provisionally applied or enter fully into force. Seventh edition. To view earlier editions of this briefing, please see the EPRS blog.

The future of humanitarian aid in a new context full of challenges

21-09-2021

In light of the current highly challenging background of humanitarian intervention for the European Union and international humanitarian donors, the European Commission has adopted a Communication on the EU’s humanitarian action: new challenges, same principles. It provides guidelines on how the EU may face this challenge in collaboration with Member States and donor partners. The Communication focuses on two main areas: (1) addressing needs, reducing the funding gap, and (2) supporting an enabling ...

In light of the current highly challenging background of humanitarian intervention for the European Union and international humanitarian donors, the European Commission has adopted a Communication on the EU’s humanitarian action: new challenges, same principles. It provides guidelines on how the EU may face this challenge in collaboration with Member States and donor partners. The Communication focuses on two main areas: (1) addressing needs, reducing the funding gap, and (2) supporting an enabling environment for humanitarian aid. Through an analysis of the Communication’s seven objectives, the authors address key actions and provide final recommendations. Furthermore, authors evaluate which key actions are the most promising, critical or challenging, which have already been partially implemented and which should be prioritised. Implementation of the key actions is generally well developed, albeit many are found to share certain critical issues. These refer specifically to the need for: increased transparency and accountability; enhancing EU coordination with donor partners; and significantly strengthening the EU’s leadership role. Moreover, the implementation of key actions must take greater account of dialogue and coordination both in the decision-making phase as well as in the implementation of humanitarian aid on the ground.

Ekstern forfatter

Francesca PUSTERLA; Elia R.G. PUSTERLA

Corruption and human rights in third countries: developments in EU external action since 2017

02-09-2021

In 2017, the European Parliament adopted a Resolution on corruption and human rights in third countries (hereinafter ‘EP 2017 Resolution’) which included a set of practical recommendations on corruption and human rights in EU external relations. This briefing analyses the progress made by EU actors in implementing those recommendations. It focuses on development and human rights tools addressed in the EP 2017 Resolution, including EU funded projects and programmes, technical cooperation, EU human ...

In 2017, the European Parliament adopted a Resolution on corruption and human rights in third countries (hereinafter ‘EP 2017 Resolution’) which included a set of practical recommendations on corruption and human rights in EU external relations. This briefing analyses the progress made by EU actors in implementing those recommendations. It focuses on development and human rights tools addressed in the EP 2017 Resolution, including EU funded projects and programmes, technical cooperation, EU human rights dialogues and public diplomacy, as well as support for whistle-blowers and civil society organisations exposing corruption. It concludes that, while action has been taken on various fronts to support anti-corruption efforts in third countries following the recommendations, a more systematic approach to corruption and human rights could be taken in some areas. Cooperation between EU actors and enhanced capacity building on corruption and human rights are also key elements for a successful anti-corruption strategy in EU external action.

Ekstern forfatter

Rosana GARCIANDIA

The European Commission's legislative proposals in the New Pact on Migration and Asylum

30-07-2021

This study, commissioned by the European Parliament’s Policy Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs on request of the Parliament’s Committee on Civil Liberties and Justice, aims to provide a detailed mapping and analysis of the central legal changes and issues characterising the five main legislative proposals accompanying the Pact on Migration and Asylum, presented by the Commission in September 2020. The legislative instruments under consideration include a new Screening Regulation ...

This study, commissioned by the European Parliament’s Policy Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs on request of the Parliament’s Committee on Civil Liberties and Justice, aims to provide a detailed mapping and analysis of the central legal changes and issues characterising the five main legislative proposals accompanying the Pact on Migration and Asylum, presented by the Commission in September 2020. The legislative instruments under consideration include a new Screening Regulation, an amended proposal for an Asylum Procedures Regulation, an amended proposal revising the Eurodac Regulation, a new Asylum and Migration Management Regulation, and a new Crisis and Force Majeure Regulation. As a second step, the study provides a critical assessment of the five proposals as to their legal coherence, fundamental rights compliance, and application of the principle of solidarity and fair sharing of responsibility enshrined in Article 80 TFEU.

Ekstern forfatter

Evelien BROUWER; Giuseppe CAMPESI ; Sergio CARRERA, Roberto CORTINOVIS, Eleni KARAGEORGIOU, Jens VEDSTED-HANSEN, Lina VOSYLIŪTĖ

New EU strategic priorities for the Sahel: Addressing regional challenges through better governance

09-07-2021

Recent events have shown that the Sahel region remains highly politically unstable. The military takeover of the Chadian government following President Idriss Déby's sudden death in April 2021 and the repercussions of the August 2020 and May 2021 military coups in Mali are worrying signs of weak democratic governance structures. Burkina Faso's transitional democracy has also been severely destabilised by the activities of extremist groups and internal conflicts. This political fragility and the lack ...

Recent events have shown that the Sahel region remains highly politically unstable. The military takeover of the Chadian government following President Idriss Déby's sudden death in April 2021 and the repercussions of the August 2020 and May 2021 military coups in Mali are worrying signs of weak democratic governance structures. Burkina Faso's transitional democracy has also been severely destabilised by the activities of extremist groups and internal conflicts. This political fragility and the lack of government legitimacy have made the responses to the Sahel's security and humanitarian issues all the more challenging. The continued threat posed by terrorist armed groups and rising intercommunal violence over land and resources have led to both internal and cross-border displacements in Sahel countries. Meanwhile, the inadequacy of governance mechanisms for managing this displacement, compounded by environmental degradation, resource scarcity and population growth, has created a severe humanitarian crisis. Since 2011, the European Union (EU) strategy for the Sahel has focused on both security and development to address these numerous and interconnected challenges. However, EU efforts have remained dominated by a military approach to tackle rising terrorist activity, achieving concrete results but ultimately falling short of long-term regional stability. The new EU integrated strategy in the Sahel aims to strengthen action at the political level, focusing on governance mechanisms, human rights, and collaboration with civil society and local authorities, while maintaining security cooperation with states in the region.

Mali: Yet another coup

16-06-2021

On 24 May 2021, the Malian transitional government suffered a coup – the second in nine months – which cast a shadow on the transition process that should lead to a presidential election in early 2022. These developments risk further destabilising the Sahel and challenge the implementation of the new EU strategy in the region.

On 24 May 2021, the Malian transitional government suffered a coup – the second in nine months – which cast a shadow on the transition process that should lead to a presidential election in early 2022. These developments risk further destabilising the Sahel and challenge the implementation of the new EU strategy in the region.

The EU Approach on Migration in the Mediterranean

11-06-2021

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 EU approach on migration in the Mediterranean, covering developments from the 2015 refugee crisis up to the Covid-19 pandemic, assessing the effect these events have had on the design, implementation, and reform of EU policy on asylum, migration and external border control, and documenting the ramifications these changes have had ...

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 EU approach on migration in the Mediterranean, covering developments from the 2015 refugee crisis up to the Covid-19 pandemic, assessing the effect these events have had on the design, implementation, and reform of EU policy on asylum, migration and external border control, and documenting the ramifications these changes have had on the actors who operate and are impacted by these policies, including immigration authorities, civil society organisations, and the migrants themselves. The study includes a review of the state of play of relevant EU asylum and migration legislation and its implementation, an appraisal of the situation in the Mediterranean, and a thorough examination of the external dimension of the EU migration, asylum and border policies, focusing on cooperation with third countries (Turkey, Libya and Niger), incorporating human rights and refugee law considerations and an analysis of the implications of funding allocations under the EU Trust Fund for Africa and the Refugee Facility in Turkey. The main goal is to test the correct application of EU and international law, having regard to increased allegations of human rights violations, undue criminalisation, and complicity of the EU in atrocity crimes committed against migrants at sea, stranded in Libya, or contained in Niger and Turkey. The role of EU agencies (Frontex and EASO) is also assessed alongside the bilateral or multi-lateral initiatives adopted by MS to confront the mounting challenges at the common external borders of the EU, incorporating the principle of solidarity and fair sharing of responsibility (Article 80 TFEU) as a horizontal concern.

Ekstern forfatter

Violeta MORENO-LAX,Jennifer ALLSOPP,Evangelia (Lilian) TSOURDI,Philippe DE BRUYCKER,Andreina DE LEO

Preparing the CSDP for the new security environment created by climate change

10-06-2021

While the European Union has developed a number of policy commitments and instruments to deal with the nexus between climate change and security, the Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) has lagged behind. This study discusses the security implications of climate change in the EU Neighbourhood and makes recommendations concerning how the CSDP might integrate climate factors into its mission and deliverables. The CSDP will need to adopt a place-specific approach that foregrounds the distinctive ...

While the European Union has developed a number of policy commitments and instruments to deal with the nexus between climate change and security, the Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) has lagged behind. This study discusses the security implications of climate change in the EU Neighbourhood and makes recommendations concerning how the CSDP might integrate climate factors into its mission and deliverables. The CSDP will need to adopt a place-specific approach that foregrounds the distinctive social, political and economic dynamics through which climate factors makes themselves felt in different partner countries. The analysis looks in particular depth at the Sahel and the Horn of Africa as two regions where CSDP missions already operate or are likely to operate in the future. Countries in these regions are highly vulnerable to the interaction between a degraded environment and climate change impacts, raising the prospects of humanitarian crises due to food insecurity and internal instability due to competition for resources. These problems compound the EU’s prominent security concerns of terrorism and migration. The EU can move to climate-proof the CSDP through better conflict intelligence and foresight, carefully adapted and adequately resourced mandates, climate-change proofing investments in equipment and infrastructure, and better links to local social and institutional dynamics. The European Parliament should deploy its considerable political capital to support such initiatives, through resolutions, engagement with the UN and other inter-parliamentary fora, and efforts to garner political commitment from the Member States.

Ekstern forfatter

•Christoph MEYER, Professor of Professor of European & International Politics, King’s College London •Francesca VANTAGGIATO, Lecturer in Public Policy, King’s College London, •Richard YOUNGS, Senior Fellow, Carnegie Europe and Professor of International Relations, University of Warwick

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28-10-2021
Workshop "Envisioning International Justice: what role for the ICC?"
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Public hearing on the "Luxletters revelations"
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