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FC Barcelona - March 2004


The Federal Committee of the Young European Federalists (JEF) met in Barcelona (Spain) on March 26-28, 2004 and adopted the following resolutions:

 

The Resolutions in Word document format can be downloaded below:


EP01_Constitution_final.doc
EP02_movement_persons_final.doc
EP03_sfdp_final.doc
EP04_Mediterranean_final.doc
EP05_stability_pact_final.doc
EP06_financial_constitution_final.doc
EP07_terrorism_final.doc
IP02_representativeJEF_final.doc
IP03_neighbouring_countries.doc
Political_Platform_partII_final.doc

EP 01 On the failure of the Brussels IGC and the future of the draft European Constitution


The Federal Committee of JEF-Europe, meeting 26th-28th March in Barcelona:

 

Affirms:

-          Its support for the work carried out by the Convention to produce a draft European Constitution that, while impossible to consider as a Federal European Constitution, will advance the cause of European federalism when it is adopted, and can be a decisive step towards the goal of a Federal European Constitution.

-          Its rejection of the IGC method as a means of treaty / constitutional reform in the future in the European Union as decisions should no longer be taken behind closed doors on the basis of a lowest-common-denominator intergovernmental bargain.

-          The importance of complete transparency in the legislative process as an important step towards bringing the Union closer to its citizens.

 

Profoundly concerned by:

-          The failure to reach an agreement on the adoption of a European Constitution in Brussels in December and considers this as a setback for European democracy.

-          The way heads of state and government undid many elements of the historic bargain struck by the Convention, even before the summit failed.

-          The strong appeal to national interests by many states at the Brussels summit and a stubbornness to not compromise for the sake of the greater good in Europe.

-          The absence of enough political will to reform the imbalanced and complex Nice voting system which could lead to decision-making paralysis in an EU of 25 or more states.

-          The lack of political vision among the leading political figures in Europe.

 

Rejects:

-          All statements from European politicians claiming that a multi-speed Europe is the only answer to the failure of Brussels, as the main division – on voting rights – concerns all member states in all areas in which the EU is already competent.

-          Claims that the Treaty of Nice might serve as an efficient legal basis.

-          All the proposals for institutional changes that would seriously endanger the unity of the EU.

 

Therefore calls for:

-          Adoption of the draft Constitution proposed by the Convention in its original form as soon as possible, and before the European Parliament elections, followed by swift and effective ratification in all member states without allowing any veto to block the entering into force of the Constitution.

-          Initiatives from the Irish Presidency, from the European Parliament, the European Commission and the national Parliaments, to make sure that the Constitution is adopted  before the European Elections.

-          The next European Council to take place at least one week before the European Parliament Elections.

-          The widest possible debate about the Constitution as part of the campaigns for the European Parliament elections.

-          Improvements to the Constitution after its ratification, by a true Constitutional Convention, with a clear mandate to transform the Constitution into a truly federal and democratic European Constitution and proceeding by qualified majority voting.

 

Therefore, JEF shall campaign for:

-          the European Parliament, the European Commission, the national parliaments, the political parties in Europe and the civil society (using in particular the popular initiative Procedure, art. 46) to urge all national governments to call a second Convention.

-          A future Convention aims to achieve a two chamber parliament, including the European Parliament as the Chamber of the Citizens (lower house) and the Council of Ministers as a Chamber of the States, together responsible for all legislative decisions of the Union, and develop the European Commission into a true government of the European Union and introduce qualified majority voting for revisions to the Constitution.

 

Therefore calls on all JEF sections:

-          To use the annexed appeal for adoption of the Constitution in their activities from now until the European elections especially during JEF’s Europe Week campaigns in the context of the campaign ‘Give Europe A Face’ to apply pressure to achieve the successful adoption of the Constitution.

-          To put pressure on the candidates for the European Parliament elections to express their opinion on the Constitution in order to place the debate on the future of the EU at the core of the elections campaign.

-          To promote a debate inside their national parliaments on the adoption of the Constitution.


EP02 - on the restrictions on the free movement of people after the 1st of May 2004


JEF Europe Federal Committee meeting 26.3. -28.3.2004 Barcelona

 

Regrets:

-    The recent decisions made by almost all the current member states of the European Union to put any long restrictions on the free movement of labour and people from 8 of the new member states after the 1st of May 2004.

-    That also the countries that had initially committed themselves not to put restrictions on the free movement of labour and people, have changed their positions and imposed some sort of restrictions.

-    The length of the restrictions in Germany and Austria (7 years), which might encourage other member states to continue the restrictions even after two years.

Points out:

-    The recent survey made by the Commission, which shows that completely free movement of people and labour from the beginning of the 1st of May 2004 would only encourage 1 % of the population of the new member states to move into the current member states in the near future. This means 220 000 people in the union of 450 million people.

-    That the free movement of labour and people are fundamental principles of the European Union, and these principles should not be violated.

-    That divisions between the new and current member states may lead into the creation of ”first and second class EU-citizens”. This kind of development cannot be tolerated in the Union based on equality of its citizens.

-    That such decision has been made without a sound economic reason, but only for immediate political gains.

-    That the new member states are likely to follow the unfortunate example of setting restrictions on the free movement of people

Condemns:

-    The view that there can be two types of European citizen. Only a united Europe, where equality is fully respected will be a prosperous one.

-    Negative propaganda attempting to portray citizens of the new EU member states as political problems rather than as part of our political family.

Urges:

-    Current member states to abolish barriers to free movement of citizens from the new member states immediately.

-    Current 15 member states in the Union of 25 to respect the fundamental values of the European Union and to promote the solidarity among the citizens of the enlarged EU.

-    The European Commission to investigate the legality of these restrictions.

-    All EU national governments to run and facilitate programmes welcoming the new EU member states and to promote a European demos in all 25 member states, and ensure full integration of new member states and their societies in the economic and political life of the Union

JEF Europe Federal Committee meeting 26.3. -28.3.2004 Barcelona

 

Regrets:

-    The recent decisions made by almost all the current member states of the European Union to put any long restrictions on the free movement of labour and people from 8 of the new member states after the 1st of May 2004.

-                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      That also the countries that had initially committed themselves not to put restrictions on the free movement of labour and people, have changed their positions and imposed some sort of restrictions.

-    The length of the restrictions in Germany and Austria (7 years), which might encourage other member states to continue the restrictions even after two years.

Points out:

-    The recent survey made by the Commission, which shows that completely free movement of people and labour from the beginning of the 1st of May 2004 would only encourage 1 % of the population of the new member states to move into the current member states in the near future. This means 220 000 people in the union of 450 million people.

-    That the free movement of labour and people are fundamental principles of the European Union, and these principles should not be violated.

-    That divisions between the new and current member states may lead into the creation of ”first and second class EU-citizens”. This kind of development cannot be tolerated in the Union based on equality of its citizens.

-    That such decision has been made without a sound economic reason, but only for immediate political gains.

-    That the new member states are likely to follow the unfortunate example of setting restrictions on the free movement of people

Condemns:

-    The view that there can be two types of European citizen. Only a united Europe, where equality is fully respected will be a prosperous one.

-    Negative propaganda attempting to portray citizens of the new EU member states as political problems rather than as part of our political family.

Urges:

-    Current member states to abolish barriers to free movement of citizens from the new member states immediately.

-    Current 15 member states in the Union of 25 to respect the fundamental values of the European Union and to promote the solidarity among the citizens of the enlarged EU.

-    The European Commission to investigate the legality of these restrictions.

-    All EU national governments to run and facilitate programmes welcoming the new EU member states and to promote a European demos in all 25 member states, and ensure full integration of new member states and their societies in the economic and political life of the Union


EP 03 - on the Single Foreign And Defence Policy


Following the new provisions made by the draft Constitution, the Young European Federalists believe that a thorough assessment of the policy and it future implications is needed.

 

1. An economic giant with no real political clout

 

Creating a politically unified Europe after the successful economic integration, emphasizing especially the introduction of the Euro seems to be the next logical step. The need for a functioning Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP) has become ever clearer after the disarray European states were left in as a result of Iraq crisis. Europe will be unable to make its voice heard on a global stage if it is to remain divided on the home front. What Europe needs is a comprehensive and clear Single Foreign and Defence Policy (SFDP) that would merge the current CFSP and the European Security and Defence Policy (ESDP).

 

The time has come for member-states to give up the traditionally national nature of their foreign policy, and make a move towards a genuinely European foreign and defence policy. The notion that the ability to conduct foreign policy is something intimately linked with national identity can be viewed as outdated in a world where most security risks do not follow the lines of national borders any more. Taken individually most EU member-states fall short of weight to have direct impact on a global stage, thus pooling their resources for a unified stance will enable them to exert their vision of the world more effectively.

 

Only a truly unified SFDP can meet the needs of Europeans in the twenty first century. Clearly, this is something European citizens seem to anticipate. In a Euro Barometer poll, conducted between January and mid-February 2004, over 70 per cent of EU citizens supported the Union's efforts towards creating a more effective Common Security and Foreign Policy.

 

 

2. Institutional setting

 

2.1. European Foreign Policy

 

There remains a definitive intergovernmental touch in the draft Constitution when it comes to matters of CFSP. Disappointingly, the European Council is to be the body to draw the broad guidelines of the CFSP. The Commissions political role remains limited, its executive role somewhat vague in the light of the dual nature of the proposed foreign minister. Enhancements of European Parliament’s powers in CFSP, contrary to many other policy fields, can be viewed as disappointingly limited.

 

2.2. Foreign Minister, European Commission

 

The Foreign Minister proposed by the draft Constitution, can be regarded a step towards a more coherent foreign policy of the Union. The double-hatted foreign minister could bridge the gap between the administrative resources of the Commission and the politically more able post of High Commissioner. The current High Representative lacks the financial and administrative resources of the Commission to implement its policies, but clearly has the political mandate and authority to negotiate. The new post of Foreign Minister might also establish a senior ’easy-to-understand’ figure to represent the Union externally and also lead to a more efficient deployment of Unions resources internally.

 

On the other hand, the synergy effects of this new double hat post should not be taken for granted. It remains to be seen if, and to what extent, new loyalties between the Commission and Council will emerge, as to enable the smooth cooperation of the two bureaucratic systems under the proposed post of Foreign Minister. The need to ’communitarise’ the CFSP and a gradual shift of the foreign minister away from its intergovernmental duality towards the Commission should be aimed for in the long run. Only such an institutional placement would provide space for a Single Foreign and Defence Policy.

 

The relationship to Presidency is another issue throwing confusion to the external representation of the Union. (see below ’Rotating presidency’) Thus, more clarity in its triangular responsibility to the Council, Presidency and Commission, would be necessary to the efficient working of the Unions foreign policy

 

2.3. Presidency

 

Rotating presidency in CFSP matters is clearly stemming the coherence of CFSP. The present system with 6 months rotating presidency, where every Member State introduces a new working plan with its own national interest, does not offer the right institutional solution for a strong CFSP. Thus, handing the tasks over to the proposed Foreign minister would be a logical step in ensuring the continuity of the Unions foreign policy.

 

2.4. Majority voting as a rule, not exception

         

Especially, smaller countries must be ensured that their bigger counterparts pursuing their national interest under the European flag do not easily take hostage the CFSP. On the other hand, no member-state should be able to block the effective working of the Union in case of clear majority. It is essential for EU member states, big and small, to develop a sense of European responsibility to make CFSP work.

 

The rather ambiguous rule of the draft Constitution that the Council of Ministers can take majority vote on a proposal in the framework of CFSP only when it had unanimously asked the foreign minister to make such a proposal means, that in essence the Union is still bound to unanimity decision-making. With the number of Member States increasing to 25, it will be very likely that CFSP decision will be very vague, reactive and will come at a very late stage. On the contrary, what the EU clearly needs is well-defined decision-making rules to enable a swift action in cases of crises.

 

2.5. European Parliament

 

The only consultative role confined to the European Parliament (EP) by the draft Constitution is disappointingly little. The EP’s powers in matters of CFSP should be substantially strengthened to give it an active role in formulating and supervising the Union’s foreign policy. In the long run the EP should become the primary force behind drawing the guidelines for CFSP, since in the light of citizens wishes and expectations, the consent of a body with a strong democratic mandate such as the EP is needed for legitimising foreign policy decisions. This is also one of the pillars of democratic societies.

 

The EP should have co-decision right in the process of adopting international agreements. The EP should be consulted before signing any international agreements. External policy decisions with implications on budget, such as economic sanctions or foreign aid, should require close parliamentary involvement.

 

Conclusion

 

Institutional settings cannot compensate for the lack of political will but can create a framework in which common will is more likely to rise. Thus, for EU to have credible representation in the world an efficient institutional setting is of great importance. When Union speaks with one voice, as it does in international trade matters, its views are widely respected and they carry global weight.

         

 

 

3. European Security and Defence Policy (ESDP)

 

The nature of security has dramatically changed over the past decade. A drift away from post-cold war world into the age of international terrorism sets new requirements for security and defence policy of the Union. The Union clearly needs now more than ever to establish its own military capabilities to back up its foreign policy goals.

 

In order to remove the large scale inefficiencies in military spending Member States should aim at sharing their military and intelligence assets more effectively in the future and consequently make European defence more effective and coherent.

 

3.1. Grand strategy of ESDP and Solana doctrine

 

The Solana doctrine provides the Union the first time with a much-needed grand strategy in field of security and defence. Only by working together can the Member States deal with the challenges of the 21st Century world security environment: terrorism, WMD, failed states and environmental issues. The EU should lay its emphasis on pre-emptive action only in extreme case and only under multilateral institutions. The Charter of the United Nations should figure as the main pillar of the international legal order. All actions of the Union should be in compliance with the international law.

 

3.2. Structured Cooperation

 

Defence being a field where political will and capabilities vary enormously, the provisions made on structured cooperation by the draft Constitution should be seen as a political tool moving towards a creation of Single European Army.

It should provide the legal framework to operate for countries with a desire for closer cooperation on defence matters, but should remain open for all who wish to join it in later stages, and should not create any new exclusive institutions and parallel decision-making procedures.


EP 04 - Draft Resolution on the Future of the Euro-Mediterranean Relations


Acknowledging the historical ties that link the Mediterranean region to Europe and their contribution to the to the European identity,

Bearing in mind that the Euro Mediterranean region has experienced periods of intense conflict but also peaceful periods in which co-operation was enhanced.

Concerned that the social, economic and cultural differences that exist between the two shores which have been greatly influenced by the colonialism have contributed to reciprocal mistrust.

Aware of the fact that there exist many political challenges and only through peaceful resolution of these can the Mediterranean become a stable and prosperous region.

 

JEF- Europe believes that:

Friendly relations need to be built in the Mediterranean region, based on UN principles such as the respect for human rights, minorities, and gender equality.

In times of conflict, international law must be respected.

The Mediterranean is a cradle of cultures and that cultural barriers need to be overcome so that the Mediterranean peoples can live in an area of peace and tolerance.

 

JEF-Europe welcomes:

 

a new era of co-operation and an exchanging of experiences among the countries in the Euro Mediterranean region. It is time to make use of our common past to start a renewed process of exchange views with our neighbours, especially regarding our respective experiences in terms of regional integration and conflict resolution through multilateral means.

 

In this regard, JEF-Europe states that:

 

It is necessary to give support to the 1995 initiative known as the “Barcelona Process” and its further developments. The agreements led to the reinforcement of regional co-operation between EU and Mediterranean countries with the financial support of the EC’s MEDA program. So far, the Barcelona Process is a positive step in the development of a new way of managing relations in the region. Nevertheless, a lot of improvements are still to be made in this framework in order to make the cooperation go beyond the economic field.

 

The significant challenges are twofold. The EU needs to ensure the implementation of its decisions in order to fix the credibility problem of the Barcelona Process.

 

Additionally, the Barcelona Process needs to become more visible among the EU and EURO-MED partners' citizens as this has been lacking significantly in the past.

 

Public institutions –including EU institutions, EU member states’ and other countries’ institutions- have a decisive role in the achievement of those goals. However, beyond the institutional sphere, also civil society has to get involved in the struggle, in order to get rid of prejudices and make the cooperation work.

 

 

Annex 1:

 

The Euro-Mediterranean Partnership

 

After 20 years of increasingly intensive bilateral trade and development cooperation between the European Union, the 15 Member States and its 12 Mediterranean Partners, the Conference of EU and Mediterranean Foreign Ministers in Barcelona (27-28 November 1995) marked the start into a new "partnership" phase of the relationship including bilateral and multilateral or regional cooperation (hence called Barcelona Process or, in general, Euro-Mediterranean Partnership).

 

The 12 Mediterranean Partners, situated in the Southern and Eastern Mediterranean are Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia (Maghreb); Egypt, Israel, Jordan, the Palestinian Authority, Lebanon, Syria (Mashrek); Turkey, Cyprus and Malta; Libya currently has observer status at certain meetings.

 

Key objectives

The Barcelona Declaration adopted at the Barcelona Conference expresses the 27 partners’ intention to:

1. Establish a common Euro-Mediterranean area of peace and stability based on fundamental principles including respect for human rights and democracy (political and security partnership),

 

2. Create an area of shared prosperity through the progressive establishment of a free-trade area between the EU and its Partners and among the Mediterranean Partners themselves, accompanied by substantial EU financial support for economic transition in the Partners and for the social and economic consequences of this reform process (economic and financial partnership), and

 

3. Develop human resources, promote understanding between cultures and rapprochement of the peoples in the Euro-Mediterranean region as well as to develop free and flourishing civil societies (social, cultural and human partnership).

 

Barcelona Declaration : http://europa.eu.int/comm/external_relations/euromed/bd.htm

 

The MEDA Programme

 

The MEDA programme is the principal financial instrument of the European Union for the implementation of the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership. The programme offers technical and financial support measures to accompany the reform of economic and social structures in the Mediterranean partners.

 

The EU Council, which together with the Parliament comprises the budgetary authority, decides the annual EU budget allocation for MEDA and other regional budget lines for the Mediterranean and Middle East.

 

- MEDA Figures

 

For the period 1995-1999 MEDA accounted for €3,435 million of the €4,422 million of budgetary resources allocated for financial cooperation between the EU and its Mediterranean Partners. For 2000-2006 MEDA is endowed with €5,350 million. In 2000 committed MEDA funds amounted to €879 million (in addition, €8.8 million were carried over to 2001).

 

These grants from the Community budget are accompanied by substantial lending from the European Investment Bank (EIB). For 1995-99, the EIB loans totalled €4,808 million; for 2000-2007, the EIB’s Euromed II lending mandate is €6,400 million. The Bank committed itself to contribute a further €1,000 million from its own resources and at its own risk over the same period for transnational projects.

 

- Bilateral Cooperation

 

The priorities for MEDA resources at the bilateral level are:

 

1. support to economic transition: the aim is to prepare for the implementation of free trade through increasing competitiveness with a view to achieving sustainable economic growth, in particular through development of the private sector;

 

2. strengthening the socio-economic balance: the aim is to alleviate the short-term costs of economic transition through appropriate measures in the field of social policy.


EP 05 – The Commission to Guard the Stability and Growth Pact


The Young European Federalists

 

-          Convinced of the importance of the Stability and Growth Pact to the welfare of all European Union citizens

 

-          Determined to deepen European economic integration

 

-          Admitting the difficulty of fitting structurally different economies under the same roof in the EMU

 

-          Disappointed that The Council has proven itself unable to guard the Stability and Growth Pact, due to the Member States’ national short-sighted interests and unwillingness to balance budgets during upturns in the economy

 

-          Congratulating the Commission on its tough decision to resolve the matter in the European Court of Justice

 

**

 

-         Urges the European Union Member States to give the Commission the role as a guardian of the Stability and Growth Pact

 

-         Advises the Member States to update the Stability and Growth Pact, finding ways to ensure adherence to the pact without punishing states in times of an economic downturn


EP 06 - Resolution on the future financial constitution of the Union


JEF-Europe acknowledges and underlines the political principle that the appropriate financial constitution for the European Union has to be derived from the political competencies of the Union. It is a means of implementing the Union’s policies in an efficient manner, and therefore not an end in itself. However, its quality plays a crucial role for the effectiveness and success of the implementation of the Union's policies.

 

JEF-Europe stands for the creation of a European federation. In order to function properly a European federation has to be given the necessary financial instruments.

 

In the view of JEF-Europe the main instrument to finance a political entity such as a European federation should be (European) taxes.

 

In order to regulate the fiscal relations between different levels of government in the European Union in an orderly and efficient manner, JEF-Europe proposes a European system of fiscal transfers (ESFT) as a successor to the present system of structural funds and cohesion funds providing the necessary financing for projects that affect two or more member states. At present these projects are often not realized because member states cannot agree on the terms of financing. It is conceivable that this ESFT continues to obey to the principle of co-financing as it exists with the cohesion funds. However, its financing capacities should rely on a fair principle of distribution such as the funds per capita. This would still support poorer regions in their efforts to catch up with the centres, because of the higher purchasing power in the periphery.

 

Furthermore, JEF-Europe proposes that in the ESFT it is laid down what share of any specific tax accrues to which level of government within the Union. In the view of JEF-Europe this could add flesh to the bone of the principle of subsidiarity and take it out of its present obscurity. The ESFT shall make use of the full range of types of fiscal transfers as they exist already in similar arrangements in the member states (bloc grants, earmarked grants, contribution payments, tax sharing).

 

JEF-Europe demands that all taxes that are levied to finance competencies of the European Union shall be levied at the level of the European Union so that the Union cannot be held captive by national interests of individual (large) member states. The European Union shall have the competence to decide the size of its budget using a codecision procedure. The total size of the budget, and the projects it finances, shall be determined in respect of the principle of subsidiarity.

 

JEF-Europe acknowledges that once the Union takes on the form of a federation with full fiscal authority it needs the appropriate executive body to take care of its finance, hence a ministry of finance, an agency controlling the debt instruments, etc. It only takes a small effort to realize these institutions since the ECOFIN is a well established body, which already determines a big part of the framework on fiscal and financial policies being implemented in today's Union and in the member states.

 


EP 07 - On the impact of terrorist action on democratic societies


JEF-Europe

 

-        Condemns all forms of terrorism.

 

-        acknowledges as a strong supporter of a democratic, liberal and open society the visible danger of future black-mailing of public institutions and governments by terrorist organisations.

 

-        demands a strong and united strategy of the EU and its member states in countering any attempt to disrupt the world wide cooperation against terrorism. Societies that are strongly based on democracy, justice, and the respect of human rights will not give in to any efforts to undermine these principles.

 

-        welcomes the proposals by the Irish presidency and the EU Commission for an enhanced cooperation in security matters.

 

-        warns the EU and the international community against focussing exclusively on measures of intelligence and police services, without questioning their importance and effectiveness. The European Union represents a community of democratic and free societies. The commitment to human rights and the people’s freedom is the strongest answer one can give to undemocratic and violent attacks. 

 

-        demands that the European Union and the international community as a whole undertake a study of the possible causes of terrorist activity, such as the sometimes miserable situation of immigrants as well as religious and ethnic minorities within the EU, and the desperate situation of citizens in the less advantaged regions in the world. It must be understood, that the provision of a sound economic, social and also political environment is the main basis to withstand the persuasion of fundamentalist and extremist streamings. The outcomes of this study should form the basis of a strategy to effectively prevent individuals resorting to terrorist means.

 

Annex 1

 

In its “Action paper in response to the terrorist attacks on Madrid” from March 18 2004 the European Commission presented a list of new proposals:

 

-        The establishment of a European Register on convictions and disqualifications for individuals and corporate bodies, and a database of persons, groups and entities covered by restrictive measures for the fight against terrorism or under criminal proceedings for terrorist offences.

-        Exchange of information through a new coordination mechanism within a third pillar umbrella

-        Enhancing traceability and control of the weapons of terror and precursors

-        Tackling bio-terrorism through an acceleration of the implementation of a Health Security Strategy and the establishment of a European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) in 2005.

 

European Commission action paper in response to the terrorist attacks on Madrid: http://www.europa.eu.int/rapid/start/cgi/guesten.ksh?p_action.gettxt=gt&doc=MEMO/04/65|0|RAPID&lg=en&display=

 

 

Annex 2:

 

At an extraordinary meeting of the Justice and Home Affairs Council meeting The Council agreed under the Irish presidency on a draft Declaration on Combating Terrorism.

 

The Council focused on the following:

 

-        reinforcing operational cooperation through a renewed commitment to the optimum use of bodies such as Europol, Eurojust and the Police Chiefs' Task Force as well as other measures directed to preventing terrorist groups having access to instruments of their trade;

-        improving arrangements for the sharing of intelligence including tasking SG/HR Solana with reporting, within 180 days, on how an intelligence capacity might be integrated within the Council Secretariat, with a view to informing EU policy;

-        emphasizing implementation of existing legal instruments which can contribute to the fight against terrorism, in any event no later than June 2004;

-        undertaking to take forward work quickly on new instruments of relevance including establishing rules on the retention of communications traffic data by service providers and exchanging information on convictions for terrorist offences with a view to adoption of these by December 2004;

-        maximising the effectiveness of information systems and strengthening border controls and document security, with work to be taken forward on the proposal for a regulation establishing a European Borders Agency with a view to adoption by May 2004;

-        speedy adoption of the Council Directive on compensation to crime victims; improving our capacity to prevent the financing of terrorism;

-        strategic guidelines for a revised EU Plan of Action to Combat Terrorism;

-        new institutional arrangements by way of the proposal for the appointment of a Counter Terrorism Coordinator and new possibilities for ensuring operational cooperation;

-        examining measures in the area of transportation security and in terms of the external relations field.

-        implementation of the European Security Strategy;

-        the immediate implementation of the solidarity clause as envisaged by Article 42 of the draft Constitution for Europe.

 

Press Release “EU unites in the fight against Terrorism”

http://www.ue2004.ie/templates/news.asp?sNavlocator=66&list_id=438


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