16

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Addressing violations of democracy, the rule of law and fundamental rights

11-09-2020

The common values of democracy, the rule of law and fundamental rights (DRF) lie at the heart of the European integration process and are central to the values of the European Union (EU). In practice, however, individual and collective (lack of) Member State action can undermine these common values. This situation applied before the outbreak of the coronavirus crisis, but some of the national measures taken since the outbreak of the pandemic have tested the resilience of these values further. More ...

The common values of democracy, the rule of law and fundamental rights (DRF) lie at the heart of the European integration process and are central to the values of the European Union (EU). In practice, however, individual and collective (lack of) Member State action can undermine these common values. This situation applied before the outbreak of the coronavirus crisis, but some of the national measures taken since the outbreak of the pandemic have tested the resilience of these values further. More generally, the EU's response to DRF violations has so far not comprehensively tackled the problem. The status quo can result in impunity for criminal activities, as prosecutors are unwilling or unable to take on certain cases, as well as violations of human dignity and fundamental rights. It also denies opportunities for individuals to live out their human potential, and take advantage of economic opportunities, as well as eroding the basis for mutual trust among national administrative and judicial authorities. This Briefing puts forward a set of proposals aimed at enhancing the EU's resilience to DRF violations. It focuses in particular on possibilities for the European Parliament and national parliaments, with their dual mandate from EU citizens, to jointly strengthen their monitoring and investigative capabilities. In particular, they could build on their general resources to evaluate the implementation of (EU) law and further coordinate their tools to ensure the democratic accountability of Member State governments.

Orden de detención europea: Evaluación europea de la aplicación

15-06-2020

Este estudio presenta una evaluación y conclusiones relativas a la aplicación de la Decisión Marco sobre la ODE. A petición del ponente, también contiene recomendaciones sobre el modo de subsanar las deficiencias detectadas. Su objeto es contribuir a los debates del Parlamento en la materia, a fin de mejorar la comprensión de este tema y, en última instancia, servir de aportación al informe de aplicación. En el estudio se llega a la conclusión de que la Decisión Marco sobre la ODE ha simplificado ...

Este estudio presenta una evaluación y conclusiones relativas a la aplicación de la Decisión Marco sobre la ODE. A petición del ponente, también contiene recomendaciones sobre el modo de subsanar las deficiencias detectadas. Su objeto es contribuir a los debates del Parlamento en la materia, a fin de mejorar la comprensión de este tema y, en última instancia, servir de aportación al informe de aplicación. En el estudio se llega a la conclusión de que la Decisión Marco sobre la ODE ha simplificado y acelerado los procedimientos de entrega, en particular en algunos casos destacados de delincuencia grave y terrorismo. Sigue habiendo varios retos pendientes, que están relacionados con los principales debates sobre la independencia judicial, la naturaleza del reconocimiento mutuo y su relación con el Derecho y los valores internacionales y de la Unión Europea, los principios constitucionales y la necesidad de adoptar medidas adicionales de armonización. Además, existen deficiencias en la eficacia, la eficiencia y la coherencia con otras medidas y la aplicación de herramientas digitales. El estudio recomienda que se establezcan procedimientos de infracción específicos, que se apoye a las autoridades judiciales, que se permita la audiencia de los sospechosos mediante un enlace de vídeo, cuando proceda, para evitar la entrega y garantizar al mismo tiempo el ejercicio efectivo de los derechos de la defensa, y que se adopte una serie de medidas destinadas a lograr un trato humanitario de los presos. A medio plazo, por razones de legitimidad, seguridad jurídica y coherencia, el estudio recomienda que se revise la Decisión Marco sobre la ODE en el contexto de la elaboración de un código de cooperación judicial de la Unión Europea en materia penal.

European added value of an EU mechanism on democracy, the rule of law and fundamental rights - Preliminary assessment

23-04-2020

This preliminary European Added Value Assessment provides a comparison of the main features of the methodologies proposed by the European Parliament and the Commission on monitoring compliance with EU values. It reveals that though the Commission has made a significant step towards Parliament's position, four key differences in their approach remain. These notably relate to what is assessed, by whom and which follow-up is to be provided. The Parliament calls for an interinstitutional agreement in ...

This preliminary European Added Value Assessment provides a comparison of the main features of the methodologies proposed by the European Parliament and the Commission on monitoring compliance with EU values. It reveals that though the Commission has made a significant step towards Parliament's position, four key differences in their approach remain. These notably relate to what is assessed, by whom and which follow-up is to be provided. The Parliament calls for an interinstitutional agreement in accordance with which a Panel of Independent Experts should assess the state of democracy, the rule of law and fundamental rights in the Member States. Based on this Report the Parliament and national parliaments as well the Council should be able to recommend follow up action to the Commission in terms of monitoring and enforcement. The Commission takes a more limited analysis of the rule of law into its own hands, relying on a network of Member State contact points. In view of its prerogatives, the Commission does not wish to be bound to a certain follow up.

European arrest warrant

19-02-2020

The European Arrest Warrant has led to simplified and faster surrender procedures for suspects and sentenced persons. However, trust in the system needs to be enhanced through proper implementation and further harmonisation of substantive and procedural criminal law.

The European Arrest Warrant has led to simplified and faster surrender procedures for suspects and sentenced persons. However, trust in the system needs to be enhanced through proper implementation and further harmonisation of substantive and procedural criminal law.

Common minimum standards of civil procedure: European Added Value Assessment

28-11-2019

The European Added Value Assessment (EAVA) estimates whether and to what extent adoption of EU minimum standards of civil procedure could generate European added value. The European added value is quantified as a percentage reduction of the total cost of civil procedure. The total cost of civil procedure is estimated based on data on the number of civil and commercial proceedings in the EU-28 and the cost of litigation in the Member States. Based on this analysis, the EAVA estimates that introducing ...

The European Added Value Assessment (EAVA) estimates whether and to what extent adoption of EU minimum standards of civil procedure could generate European added value. The European added value is quantified as a percentage reduction of the total cost of civil procedure. The total cost of civil procedure is estimated based on data on the number of civil and commercial proceedings in the EU-28 and the cost of litigation in the Member States. Based on this analysis, the EAVA estimates that introducing EU common minimum standards of civil procedure could reduce annual costs for citizens and businesses in the European Union by as much as €4.7 to 7.9 billion per annum. The European added value could be potentially generated through reduction of fragmentation, simplification and filling gaps in the current EU procedural rules. Furthermore, EU common minimum standards would contribute towards building mutual trust between judicial authorities of different Member States. Increasing trust has the potential to enhance legal certainty and stability for citizens and businesses, further reduce uncertainty and delay costs.

Area of freedom, security and justice: Cost of Non-Europe

08-05-2019

Substantial progress has been made since creating an area of freedom, security and justice became a major political objective for the EU 20 years ago. Still, there is a lack of consistent monitoring and enforcement of EU values and norms as well as outstanding gaps in the EU’s framework in certain areas. These deficiencies have a significant impact at individual level, notably in terms of preventing the effective exercise of fundamental rights by EU citizens and third country nationals alike. They ...

Substantial progress has been made since creating an area of freedom, security and justice became a major political objective for the EU 20 years ago. Still, there is a lack of consistent monitoring and enforcement of EU values and norms as well as outstanding gaps in the EU’s framework in certain areas. These deficiencies have a significant impact at individual level, notably in terms of preventing the effective exercise of fundamental rights by EU citizens and third country nationals alike. They also have a negative effect on budgetary spending, growth and tax revenue, which is estimated at at least €180 billion annually, with the lack of enforcement of EU values still to be assessed in more detail. Further EU action in four main areas: 1. monitoring and enforcement; 2. the creation of safe legal pathways for migrants and asylum seekers to enter the EU; 3. ingraining a European law enforcement culture; and 4. completing the Union’s fundamental rights framework, would have significant benefits. In particular, it could allow individuals to fully enjoy their fundamental rights and make EU society more secure, open, fair and prosperous. This would also foster trust in the EU on the basis of its ability to deliver on its aims

The cost of non-Europe in the area of legal migration

14-03-2019

Further EU action in the area of legal migration could address obstacles experienced by Third Country Nationals within the European Union. Depending on the policy option pursued these options could result in up to €21,75 billion in benefits. Further gains could be made by addressing the fragmented national policies in this area, which are currently undermining ability of the EU as a whole to attract the workers and researchers it needs.

Further EU action in the area of legal migration could address obstacles experienced by Third Country Nationals within the European Union. Depending on the policy option pursued these options could result in up to €21,75 billion in benefits. Further gains could be made by addressing the fragmented national policies in this area, which are currently undermining ability of the EU as a whole to attract the workers and researchers it needs.

Humanitarian visas

17-10-2018

90 % of those granted international protection reach the European Union through irregular Means. Member States' failure to offer regular entry pathways to those seeking international protection undermines the achievement of their Treaty and fundamental rights obligations. This situation also has severe individual impacts in terms of mortality and damage to health, negative budgetary and economic impacts EU legislation on humanitarian visas could close the current effectiveness and fundamental rights ...

90 % of those granted international protection reach the European Union through irregular Means. Member States' failure to offer regular entry pathways to those seeking international protection undermines the achievement of their Treaty and fundamental rights obligations. This situation also has severe individual impacts in terms of mortality and damage to health, negative budgetary and economic impacts EU legislation on humanitarian visas could close the current effectiveness and fundamental rights protection gap in EU asylum policy by offering safe entry pathways, reducing irregular migration and result in increased management, coordination and efficiency in the asylum process, as well as promoting fair cost-sharing.

The fight against terrorism

25-05-2018

Significant benefits could be achieved by the EU and its Member States by addressing the gaps and barriers in the area of the fight against terrorism, notably by developing an evidence-based EU criminal policy cycle involving the European Parliament and national parliaments. In this context, EU institutions should conduct comprehensive ex-ante assessments and ex-post evaluations of counterterrorism measures, in line with better law-making principles. The effectiveness and fundamental rights compliance ...

Significant benefits could be achieved by the EU and its Member States by addressing the gaps and barriers in the area of the fight against terrorism, notably by developing an evidence-based EU criminal policy cycle involving the European Parliament and national parliaments. In this context, EU institutions should conduct comprehensive ex-ante assessments and ex-post evaluations of counterterrorism measures, in line with better law-making principles. The effectiveness and fundamental rights compliance of counter-radicalisation programmes should continue to be monitored. The framework for countering terrorism requires further refinement. A European law enforcement culture with full respect for fundamental rights needs to be fostered in which relevant information is shared and analysed, judicial cooperation tools are properly utilised and seeking the support of EU agencies becomes a natural reflex. This also requires the allocation of significant resources aimed at training and exchanges. Beyond resulting in more relevant, coherent, effective and efficient action in the fight against terrorism, such measures could increase the wellbeing of the population, reduce the material and immaterial impacts of terrorism, and ensure protection of fundamental rights when impacted by counterterrorism measures.

Equality and the Fight against Racism and Xenophobia

28-03-2018

This study specifically focuses on EU action and cooperation concerning equality and the fight against racism and xenophobia. Despite existing EU legislation and action it argues that there are still significant gaps and barriers to equal treatment and to adequate prevention and prosecution of, and compensation for, hate crimes within the European Union. The impact of the gaps and barriers identified – in action and cooperation – at EU level are assessed both in terms of economic impact and their ...

This study specifically focuses on EU action and cooperation concerning equality and the fight against racism and xenophobia. Despite existing EU legislation and action it argues that there are still significant gaps and barriers to equal treatment and to adequate prevention and prosecution of, and compensation for, hate crimes within the European Union. The impact of the gaps and barriers identified – in action and cooperation – at EU level are assessed both in terms of economic impact and their impacts on economic rights and freedoms. To address these gaps and barriers, the study provides some options for EU action in the field.

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