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Strengthening Europol's mandate

Briefing 03-06-2021

On 9 December 2020, along with its counter-terrorism agenda, the European Commission adopted a proposal for a regulation to reinforce the mandate of Europol, the EU law enforcement cooperation agency. The proposed regulation principally aims at rendering Europol's cooperation with private parties more effective; at responding to the agency's 'big data challenge', by providing a legal basis for processing large and complex datasets, including personal data of data subjects not related to a crime; ...

On 1 May 2021, the Trade and Cooperation Agreement (TCA) between the European Union (EU) and the United Kingdom (UK) entered into force, having been provisionally applied since 1 January 2021. One of the areas covered by the TCA, in its Part Three, is security cooperation between EU and UK law enforcement and judicial authorities in criminal matters. The 13 titles under Part Three contain extensive provisions aimed at enabling the continuation of information exchange, including personal data, between ...

This study, commissioned by the European Parliament’s Policy Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs at the request of the LIBE Committee, aims to provide background information on the current legal framework of Europol and a legal assessment of the European Commission’s proposal of 9 December 2020 to strengthen Europol’s mandate, divided in thematic blocks. The legal assessment is accompanied by policy recommendations.

Recast Eurodac Regulation

Briefing 26-03-2021

Eurodac is a biometric database in which Member States are required to enter the fingerprint data of asylum-seekers in order to identify where they entered the European Union (EU). Established in 2000 and reviewed in 2013, its main purpose is to facilitate the application of the Dublin Regulation. The 2013 revision broadened the scope to provide law enforcement authorities with access to the Eurodac database. As part of the reform of the common European asylum system in 2016, the European Commission ...

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 EU has made substantial progress in terms of protecting its citizens since the early 1990s, often in response to dramatic incidents, such as mafia or other organised crime group murders, big money-laundering scandals, a steep increase in migrant smuggling and trafficking in human beings following the 2015 migration crisis, or – more recently – a sharp rise in cybercrime, fraud and counterfeiting during the coronavirus pandemic. Criminal organisations continue to pose big risks to the internal ...

The commissioner-designate, Didier Reynders, appeared before the European Parliament on 02 October 2019 to answer questions from MEPs in the Committees on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs, the Committee on Legal Affairs and the Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection. During the hearing, he made a number of commitments which are highlighted in this document. These commitments refer to his portfolio, as described in the mission letter sent to him by Ursula von der Leyen, ...

Evolving from informal police cooperation in the 1970s to a fully fledged European Union (EU) agency with a strengthened mandate under its new legal basis (Regulation (EU) 2016/794), Europol's mandate is to strengthen EU Member States' competent authorities and ensure their cooperation for the purpose of 'preventing and combating serious crime affecting two or more Member States, terrorism and forms of crime which affect a common interest covered by a Union policy'. The agency is therefore empowered ...

In 2017, the European Parliament established a Special Committee on Terrorism to help answer European citizens' concerns, and in order to focus on the issues related to the fight against terrorism at both EU and national levels. The committee's report of its findings and recommendations, to be debated during the December plenary session, assesses possible legislative and practical actions against terrorism in the EU and provides several recommendations, in particular on cooperation and exchange of ...

Strengthening the EU’s external borders is key to ensuring internal security and to preserving freedom of movement in the Schengen area. While the existing border management information systems do address some of the information gaps concerning non-EU citizens coming into the EU, there is a lack of information related to visa-exempt third-country nationals arriving at the Schengen external borders. The European Commission is therefore proposing to set up an automated system that would gather information ...