Fidest – Agenzia giornalistica/press agency

Quotidiano di informazione – Anno 31 n° 301

Posts Tagged ‘meps’

Rescues at sea: MEPs demand EU and member states take responsibility

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 22 ottobre 2019

In a resolution adopted with 34 votes to 26 and 3 abstentions, the committee demands “a new more sustainable, reliable and permanent approach to search and rescue, replacing ad hoc solutions”. It also requests the EU countries to establish a fair and sustainable mechanism to distribute the rescued people. MEPs underline that, despite the significant drop in the arrivals of migrants and asylum-seekers to the EU in the last years, the route from Libya to Europe remains the deadliest migration route worldwide, with almost 700 hundred people gone missing so far this year, partly due to the reduction of search and rescue activities.They stress that saving lives is an act of solidarity but “first and foremost a legal obligation”. The text also points that international and EU law require to disembark rescued persons only in places of safety, adding that Libya that does not meet the criteria to be considered as such.Opening safe and legal pathways to the EU are the best way to prevent deaths at sea, add Civil Liberties MEPs, who demand solidarity among member states to relocate migrants and asylum-seekers and to step up resettlement, particularly of those evacuated from Libyan detention centres. They call for humanitarian corridors to be put in place.
Finally, the draft resolution notes that several NGOs and activists are under criminal investigation in different EU countries for saving lives in the Mediterranean and reiterates that humanitarian assistance should not be criminalised. It also asks member states to maintain their ports open to NGO vessels.MEPs will discuss this issue with the Council and the Commission in plenary on Wednesday 23 October. The non-legislative resolution will be then put to the vote on Thursday 24 October.

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MEPs put forward several questions on the new rule of law mechanism, the ongoing Article 7 proceedings concerning

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 5 ottobre 2019

Hungary and Poland and whether there should be action against other EU countries. They also asked about the Parliament’s right of initiative, human rights and environmental protection in commercial dealings, as well as holding multinationals to account.Members also questioned the Commissioner-designate on the need to establish an EU strategy for combatting corruption and digitalising judicial systems in the EU.You can watch the video recording of the full hearing here.
At the end of the hearing, Committee Chairs Juan Fernando López Aguilar (S&D, ES) and Lucy Nethsingha (Renew Europe, UK) held a press point outside the meeting room: watch it here Based on the committees’ recommendations, the Conference of Presidents will decide on 17 October if Parliament has received sufficient information to declare the hearing process closed. If so, the plenary will vote on whether or not to elect the Commission as a whole on 23 October, in Strasbourg.

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New mandate for MEPs to assess EU values in Member States

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 19 settembre 2019

The European Parliament’s Civil Liberties Committee has renewed and expanded the mandate of its working group on rule of law issues, which has been renamed the Democracy, Rule of Law and Fundamental Rights Monitoring Group. The new Group will continue on the work completed in the previous parliamentary term by the Rule of Law Monitoring Group. According to the new Group mission, its MEPs will have to focus on threats to democracy, the rule of law and fundamental rights, as well as the fight against corruption within the EU, across all Member States.
The working group will be able to recommend specific actions that Parliament can undertake in view of these objectives, such as meetings with stakeholders, hearings and missions, as well as to make suggestions for Civil Liberties Committee proposals for resolutions and reports. The Group’s mandate will remain in force until 31 December 2021, at which point a mid-term review will be carried out. Specific situations in one or more EU Member States will be addressed by the Group if deemed necessary by a majority of its Members, weighted according to the number of full Members of their group within the Civil Liberties committee. In case of objection by a political group, the Committee’s coordinators will decide on whether to take action.

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MEPs back partial agreement on Justice Programme

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 18 aprile 2019

The EU should promote non-discriminatory access to justice for all its citizens, as well as support gender equality. Plenary endorsed with 490 votes to 120, and 42 abstentions, the partial agreement reached between co-legislators on the EU Justice Programme for 2021-2027. The Programme will continue cultivating a European area of justice based on the rule of law, independence and impartiality of the judiciary, access to justice, mutual recognition and trust and cross-border cooperation.The Programme will, in all its actions, also promote gender mainstreaming, particularly gender equality, the rights of the child, the protection of victims and the effective application of the principle of equal rights and non-discrimination.More specifically, the programme aims to:facilitate and support judicial cooperation in civil and criminal matters, including by supporting the efforts to improve the effectiveness of national justice systems and enforcement of decisions;
support and promote judicial training to develop a common legal, judicial and rule of law culture among justice professionals; and to improve judicial cooperation and trust in cross-border proceedings;
facilitate non-discriminatory access to justice for all and effective redress, by promoting efficient procedures and supporting the rights of all victims of crime, including by electronic means.

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Tackling terrorism: MEPs approve tighter rules on homemade explosives

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 18 aprile 2019

Homemade explosives used in 40% of terrorist attacks in the EU between 2015 and 2017 New chemicals added to the list of banned substances.
Clearer licensing and screening systems for the sale of dangerous chemicals.
Plans to update and tighten rules on the use and sale of chemicals that could be used to make homemade explosives were approved by MEPs, on Tuesday
Approximately 40% of terrorist attacks in the EU between 2015 and 2017 used homemade explosives, demonstrating clear gaps in the current rules. Furthermore, the security threat has been constantly evolving, with terrorists using new formulas and techniques to prepare homemade explosives.The new rules aim to close the gaps in current legislation by:
adding new chemicals to the list of banned substances. This would include sulphuric acid which is used to produce TATP, the explosive used in the 2015 attacks in Paris, the Brussels attack in 2016 and the Manchester attack in 2017;
tightening the licensing conditions to purchase and use explosives precursors, ending the current weak registration systems that allow people to buy restricted substances by simply showing an ID card;
clarifying that online marketplaces are equally covered by the rules on sale, and on the reporting of suspicious transactions.The restrictions will not apply to professionals who need to use these chemicals in connection to their trade or profession.Rapporteur Andrejs Mamikins (S&D, LV) said: “This is a victory of European security over the terrorist threat, which no Member State can tackle individually. The new rules will close security gaps in the use and sale of explosives by setting strict rules along the whole supply chain, regulating the online market and restricting access to certain substances for members of the general public.”The new rules were adopted by 616 to 7, 21 abstentions. The text still needs to be formally approved by the Council before entering into force.The new rules will apply 18 months after their publication. Issued licences will remain valid 12 months after the application of the new rules.

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MEPs back deal on Justice programme for 2021-2027

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 5 aprile 2019

The EU should promote non-discriminatory access to justice for all its citizens, as well as support gender equality. Legal Affairs and Civil Liberties MEPs backed with 49 votes to 7, with 1 abstention, the partial agreement reached between co-legislators on the EU Justice Programme for 2021-2027. The Programme will continue cultivating a European area of justice based on the rule of law, independence and impartiality of the judiciary, access to justice, mutual recognition and trust and cross-border cooperation.
Co-legislators managed to ensure that the Programme will, in all its actions, also promote gender mainstreaming, particularly gender equality, the rights of the child, the protection of victims and the effective application of the principle of equal rights and non-discrimination.More specifically, the programme aims to:
facilitate and support judicial cooperation in civil and criminal matters, including by supporting the efforts to improve the effectiveness of national justice systems and enforcement of decisions;
support and promote judicial training to develop a common legal, judicial and rule of law culture among justice professionals; and to improve judicial cooperation and trust in cross-border proceedings;
facilitate non-discriminatory access to justice for all and effective redress, by promoting efficient procedures and supporting the rights of all victims of crime, including by electronic means.
EU co-legislators were able to start negotiations before the EU elections on a significant number of proposals for the EU’s next long term budget. The budgetary allocations for the Justice Programme were left outside the scope of this agreement, meaning that negotiations will be finalised under the next European Parliament based on this partial agreement and on the Parliament’s negotiating mandate.

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MEPs back modernised Council of Europe data protection convention

Posted by fidest press agency su domenica, 17 marzo 2019

Changes to the convention aim to respond to challenges in the digital era Safer exchange of personal data and flows between the EU and non-EU countries. The amending protocol opens the possibility for the EU to become a party to the convention. Parliament gives consent to EU countries to ratify the protocol amending the Council of Europe data protection convention to adapt it to the digital era.
The amending protocol intends to modernise and harmonise the Council of Europe data protection convention (Convention 108) in response to emerging privacy challenges, and to ensure it is adequately applied. The recommendation, adopted on Tuesday with 624 votes to 12 and 27 abstentions, underlines that the new protocol will facilitate the exchange of personal data based on appropriate safeguards.The text will also ease data sharing between the EU and non-EU parties to the convention, MEPs say. Moreover, the amending text introduces the possibility for the EU and other international organisations to join the convention.Under the currents rules only states can be parties of the data protection convention which is why the EU cannot sign or ratify the amending protocol.The amending protocol was developed in parallel with the European data protection reform package. Consequently, the amended convention is fully consistent with EU relevant instruments such as the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the Police Directive.The Council can now authorise member states to ratify the amending protocol.

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Security at sports events: EP endorses new Council of Europe convention

Posted by fidest press agency su domenica, 17 marzo 2019

Safety, security and service independent pillarsof the Convention Sports events need to remain peaceful and enjoyable for everyone Clear measures on crowd management and against any discrimination MEPs recommend authorising member states to ratify the Council of Europe convention on safety and security at football matches and other sports events.
The new convention aims at addressing the challenges caused by the great increase in the number of European citizens attending football matches and other sports events in the last decades. The EP recommendation was adopted on Tuesday with 633 votes to 22 and 14 abstentions.MEPs welcome the convention’s “balanced approach” between the three independent pillars in which it is divided, namely safety, security and service. Safety measures are aimed at protecting individuals both on their journey and in the venue of the sports event. Security measures will “deter, prevent and sanction” any violent behaviour related to football matches. Finally, service measures will ensure stadiums and other sports facilities are welcoming for everyone, including children, the elderly and people with disabilities.
All parties to the Convention are required to adopt clear and concrete measures on crowd management and associated safety and security risks. The text underlines the importance of tackling any discriminatory behaviour, including racist, sexist, homophobic and transphobic aggressions. It is necessary to improve diversity in sports and to encourage athletes and clubs to fight discriminations, MEPs say.The new convention updates the 1985 European Convention on Spectator Violence. The number of football matches and sports events has importantly increased since then. EU citizens now travel throughout Europe to support their teams. Public viewing and fan areas have also changed. The EU cannot become party to the Convention and, due to the content of some of its paragraphs, member states will only be able to adopt it if allowed by the EU.The Council can now give green light to EU countries to ratify the Convention on an Integrated Safety, Security and Service Approach at Football Matches and other Sports Events.

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New executive director for EASO: MEPs to quiz the appointed candidate

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 16 marzo 2019

Civil Liberties MEPs will hold a hearing on Tuesday with Ms Nina Gregori, the selected candidate to become new executive director of the European Asylum Support Office (EASO).
Ms Gregori, who is Slovenian, works at the country’s Ministry of the Interior since 1996. She currently serves as Director-General, responsible for the area of asylum, migration, integration, internal administrative affairs and naturalization.She was selected on 18 February by EASO’s management board to be the new executive director of the Agency. If confirmed, Ms Gregori will replace Mr Jamil Addou, who was appointed as executive director ad interim in June 2018, following the resignation of Mr José Carreira.Following the hearing, the Civil Liberties Committee must give its opinion on the appointment of Ms Gregori, which will be taken into account by the Office’s managment board before formally appointing her.

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Meps take a democratic step closer to a fair and sustainable internet

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 2 marzo 2019

The European Parliament’s JURI (Legal Affairs) committee took a democratic step closer to achieving a copyright that is fit for the digital age when it voted today in favour of the text agreed in Trilogue. Carlo Perrone, the President of the European Newspaper Publishers’ Association (ENPA) said:
“We welcome the JURI committee’s decision and now call on the plenary to vote in support of Europe’s vital cultural and media landscape as it did by a large majority last September.“The text, as agreed in Trilogue, would modernise copyright with a proportionate approachthat does not stifle digital innovation.” ENPA has published a joint statement (link here) with organisations from across the cultural and creative sector, representing authors, composers, writers, journalists, photographers and others working in all artistic fields, news agencies, book and music publishers, audiovisual and
independent music producers, which calls on the European Parliament to adopt the Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market quickly. The European Parliament plenary is provisionally scheduled for the end of March.

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Global compacts on migration and refugees: MEPs to discuss follow-up

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 1 marzo 2019

MEPs of the Civil Liberties and Development Committees and the Subcommittee on Human Rights will exchange views, also with representatives of the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) and the office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), on the best way to continue the process initiated back in 2016.The New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants, adopted by the UN General Assembly in September 2016, marked the beginning of multilateral negotiations for the adoption of two non-binding global compacts on refugees -with the objective of a fairer sharing of the burden and responsibility for hosting and supporting refugees worldwide- and migration, aimed at ensuring adequate treatment of migrants in vulnerable situations.The Global Compact on refugees was affirmed by the member states of the UN General Assembly on 17 December 2018 in the annual resolution on the work of UNHCR. The Global Compact for safe, orderly and regular migration was endorsed by the General Assembly on 19 December, with 152 votes in favour, 5 against (Czech Republic, Hungary, Israel, Poland, United States) and 12 abstentions (including Austria, Bulgaria, Italy, Latvia and Romania). Among EU Member States, Slovakia did not register its vote.

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Data protection: MEPs endorse modernisation of Council of Europe convention

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 7 febbraio 2019

Civil Liberties MEPs recommended giving green light to EU countries to ratify the protocol amending the Council of Europe data protection convention.The amending protocol aims to modernise and harmonise the Council of Europe data protection convention (Convention 108) in response to emerging privacy challenges, and to ensure it is adequately applied. Its adoption will also facilitate the exchange of personal data based on appropriate safeguards, MEPs say.They also underline the new protocol will ease data sharing between the EU and non-EU parties to the convention. Moreover, the amending text introduces the possibility for the EU and other international organisations to join the convention.Under the currents rules only states can be parties of the data protection convention which is why the EU cannot sign or ratify the amending protocol. In the recommendation, adopted on Monday by unanimity of 44 votes, MEPs gave consent to EU countries to ratify the protocol.
The recommendation now needs to be approved by the Parliament as a whole after which the Council can authorise Member States to ratify the amending protocol.

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MEPs and EU ministers agree on closing information gaps to enhance security

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 7 febbraio 2019

Currently, EU information systems used in security, border and migration management do not talk to each other and the information is stored separately in unconnected systems. This creates a risk that terrorists and criminals can escape detection by using multiple or fraudulent identities, endangering the EU’s internal security and making border and migration management more challenging.Making the systems interoperable will enable data exchange. The provisionally agreed measures would facilitate the tasks of border guards, migration officers, police officers and judicial authorities by providing them with more systematic and faster access to various EU security and border-control information systems.
The main elements agreed are:
European search portal allowing simultaneous searches, rather than searching each system individually;
Shared biometric matching service for cross-matching fingerprints and facial images from several systems;
Common identity repository providing biographical information such as dates of birth and passport numbers for more reliable identification;
Multiple identity detector, detecting whether a person is registered under multiple identities in different databases.
Parliament and Council negotiators also agreed on safeguards to protect fundamental rights and access to data.The systems covered by the new rules would include the Schengen Information System, Eurodac, the Visa Information System (VIS) and three new ones: the European Criminal Records System for Third Country Nationals (ECRIS-TCN), the Entry/Exit System (EES) and the European Travel Information and Authorisation System (ETIAS).

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MEPs assess data protection level in Japan

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 18 dicembre 2018

Bruxelles. In their assessment of the Commission’s draft adequacy decision on Japan, MEPs demand further clarifications to ensure safe data transfers to Japan.In the resolution, adopted by 516 to 26, with 11 abstentions, MEPs give their input to the draft adequacy decision on the protection of personal data afforded by Japan. This decision, to be taken by the Commission, would allow the free flow of personal data from the EU to Japan without further safeguards or authorisations.The adequacy decision would further facilitate commercial exchanges between Japan and the EU and complement the benefits of the Economic Partnership Agreement approved by the European Parliament yesterdayMEPs consider that the Japanese and EU data protection systems share a high degree of convergence in terms of principles, safeguards and individual rights, as well as oversight and enforcement mechanisms.However, they note that there are some relevant differences between the two systems especially in regards to the definition of ‘personal data’ and ‘personal information’, rules on automated decision-making and profiling, direct marketing, onward transfers and on sanctions for infringements. MEPs call on the Commission to provide further clarifications on these topics. If necessary, Japanese authorities should be requested to provide additional binding rules in order to ensure that the level of data protection in Japan is comparable to that in the EU.In their resolution, MEPs also express worry over Japanese mass surveillance facilities “that eavesdrop around the clock on phone calls, emails, and other communications” and call on the Commission to provide more information about this.Finally, MEPs highlight that the adequacy decision can send out a strong signal to countries around the world that convergence with the EU’s high data protection standards and that it acts as a precedent for future partnerships.

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MEPs assess data protection level in Japan

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 15 dicembre 2018

In their assessment of the Commission’s draft adequacy decision on Japan, MEPs demand further clarifications to ensure safe data transfers to Japan.In the resolution, adopted by 516 to 26, with 11 abstentions, MEPs give their input to the draft adequacy decision on the protection of personal data afforded by Japan. This decision, to be taken by the Commission, would allow the free flow of personal data from the EU to Japan without further safeguards or authorisations.The adequacy decision would further facilitate commercial exchanges between Japan and the EU and complement the benefits of the Economic Partnership Agreement approved by the European Parliament yesterday.MEPs consider that the Japanese and EU data protection systems share a high degree of convergence in terms of principles, safeguards and individual rights, as well as oversight and enforcement mechanisms.However, they note that there are some relevant differences between the two systems especially in regards to the definition of ‘personal data’ and ‘personal information’, rules on automated decision-making and profiling, direct marketing, onward transfers and on sanctions for infringements. MEPs call on the Commission to provide further clarifications on these topics. If necessary, Japanese authorities should be requested to provide additional binding rules in order to ensure that the level of data protection in Japan is comparable to that in the EU.In their resolution, MEPs also express worry over Japanese mass surveillance facilities “that eavesdrop around the clock on phone calls, emails, and other communications” and call on the Commission to provide more information about this.Finally, MEPs highlight that the adequacy decision can send out a strong signal to countries around the world that convergence with the EU’s high data protection standards and that it acts as a precedent for future partnerships.

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MEPs want more EU funds for NGOs promoting rule of law and fundamental rights

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 13 dicembre 2018

The Civil Liberties Committee backed on Monday a budget of 1.834 billion euro for the Rights and Values Programme for the period 2021-2027, way over the 642 million proposed by the European Commission. The draft report prepared by Bodil Valero (Greens/EFA, SE) was passed with 25 votes to 6 and 1 abstention.With a general objective of protecting and promoting the rights and values enshrined in Article 2 of the EU Treaty through support to civil society organisations at local, regional, national and transnational level, the Programme seeks to promote equality and non-discrimination, encourage citizens engagement and participation in the democratic process, and fight violence.MEPs decided to specifically mention the protection and promotion of democracy and the rule of law as the first aim, as these are a prerequisite for the protection of fundamental rights and for ensuring mutual trust among member states and of citizens in the Union, says the text.Regarding the activities to be funded with EU money, the Committee proposes, among others, awareness campaigns on European core values and the rights and obligations derived from Union citizenship, initiatives to reflect on the causes of totalitarian regimes and to commemorate their victims, town-twinning projects, support to human rights defenders and whistle-blowers, measures countering hate-speech and misinformation, and protection of victims of violence.MEPs agreed that, in exceptional cases, when there is a serious and rapid deterioration of the situation in a member state and the founding values are at risk, the Commission may open a call for proposals, under a fast-track procedure, for funding civil society organisations to facilitate and support the democratic dialogue in the country.Funds allocated to a member state under shared management could also be transferred to the Programme if the Commission activates the EU rule of law framework, or if there is a formal proposal by the Commission, the Parliament or a third of the member states to trigger Article 7 of the Treaty against that country.

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MEPs to attend UN conference on migration in Morocco

Posted by fidest press agency su domenica, 9 dicembre 2018

Marrakech, Morocco, on 10-11 December 2018 conference on migration. A European Parliament delegation participates in the UN intergovernmental conference on migration. The delegation, led by Linda McAvan (S&D, UK), will represent the position of the European Parliament at the conference to adopt the UN Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration. From the outset, the Parliament has supported the goals of the 2016 New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants and the related process as a unique opportunity to establish a global governance regime and to enhance coordination on international migration.
The resolution on 18 April 2018 insists that the compact for migration “should be people-centred and human rights-based, and should provide for long-term, sustainable and comprehensive measures, for the benefit of all parties involved, building on the principle of partnership and strengthened cooperation among countries of origin, transit and destination”. It should protect the most vulnerable (women and children, unaccompanied minors), prevent human rights abuses, and be based on partnership with a broad range of stakeholders, the Parliament stated.The members of the EP delegation are the following:
Linda McAvan (S&D, UK), chair of the development committee and of the EP delegation
Pier Antonio Panzeri (S&D, IT), chair of the human rights committee
Anna Maria Corazza Bildt (EPP, SE), civil liberties committee
Željana Zovko (EPP, HR), development and foreign affairs committees
Cécile Kyenge (S&D, IT), civil liberties and development committees
Elena Valenciano (S&D, ES), foreign affairs and human rights committees
Judith Sargentini (Greens/EFA, NL), civil liberties and development committees
Laura Ferrara (EFDD, IT), civil liberties and human rights committees
Udo Voigt (NI, DE), civil liberties committee
“The Global Compact that will be agreed next week is an important step towards creating an international system to better manage migration and cut the amount of people migrating via dangerous, illegal routes. Whilst a number of EU countries are shamefully refusing to sign the voluntary Compact, the European Parliament’s presence in Marrakesh is a symbol of the EU’s strong support of the UN process,”, said Linda McAvan (S&D, UK) before the delegation left for Marrakesh.

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MEPs warn of women’s rights violations, breaches of rule of law and hate speech

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 7 dicembre 2018

EU institutions not being effective in protecting rule of law and European values. MEPs denounce the rise of hate speech Council urged to unblock the Dublin Regulation reform Gender violence and discrimination, breaches of rule of law and hate speech were the main areas where fundamental rights were violated in the EU in 2017, MEPs say.In a non-legislative resolution adopted on Monday with 31 votes to 13 and 1 abstention, the Civil Liberties Committee assesses the situation of fundamental rights in the EU in 2017 and denounces violations of women’s rights, rule of law, freedom of speech, minorities’ rights and migration.The text condemns all forms of violence against women and regrets that only 19 EU countries have ratified the Istanbul Convention on combating gender-based violence, urging the rest of them to ratify it “without delay”. MEPs also call on member states and EU institutions to commit and take further measures to tackle violence and discrimination against women.
They support the demonstrations claiming for women’s sexual and reproductive health rights that took place last year across the EU following the retrogressions in this field, as well as the mediatisation of sexual harassment cases through initiatives such as the #MeToo movement. Nonetheless, the resolution voices concern on the prevalence of these women’s rights violations in the EU, and notes the higher vulnerability of disabled and migrant women.The Civil Liberties Committee strongly condemns the “efforts” in some EU countries to weaken the separation of powers and the independence of the judiciary, and denounce the EU institutions’ “ineffectiveness in putting an end to the serious and persistent breaches” of the Union’s values. Impartial, regular assessment on the evolution of rule of law based on objective criteria in all the member states is necessary, MEPs stress.They warn about the threat that corruption poses for democracy, the rule of law and fundamental rights, and calls on member states and EU institutions to accelerate the establishment of the European Public Prosecutor’s Office. MEPs are also concerned about the impact of Brexit on the safeguarding of the freedom of movement and residence for EU citizens living in the UK and UK citizens living in the EU.The text denounces the increasing restrictions to freedom of speech and freedom of assembly in the EU, and highlights the importance of whistleblowing as an element of investigative journalism and press freedom. MEPs express their deep concern over the threats, pressures and risk journalists face in the EU, that have even led them to assassination as in the case of the Maltese journalist Daphne Courana Galizia.
They also underline the need to combat the rising of anti-Semitism and Islamophobia, as well as the persistent discrimination and stigmatisation against LGTBI and intersex people in the EU. MEPs regret that in 2017 “no major improvement” happened concerning integration and fundamental rights of Roma people.The Committee urges the Council to put an end to the current blockage of the Dublin Regulation reform. It also points to violations of migrants and asylum seekers’ rights in some EU countries. MEPs encourage national authorities to support NGOs working in this field and to facilitate the granting of humanitarian visas to those seeking international protection.
Josep-Maria Terricabras (Greens/EFA, ES), rapporteur for the resolution, said: “Although the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights sets out the basic rights that must be respected both by the EU and the member states, we continue to witness breaches and violations of their provisions. The concerns raised in many member states on the issue of the independence of the judiciary, the obstacles and criminalization to the work of the civil society or the backlashes in the field of civil liberties – especially those related with freedom of assembly and freedom of the press – must be urgently addressed”.The resolution will be put to a vote by the full House during the January plenary session, in Strasbourg.

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MEPs call for full protection of intersex people’s rights

Posted by fidest press agency su domenica, 2 dicembre 2018

Intersex children in the EU still face human rights violations and genital mutilations. Member States asked to ensure depathologisation of intersexuality MEPs condemn the normalisation of sex treatments and surgery Birth registration procedures should be more flexible Civil Liberties MEPs urge the European Commission and member states to put measures forward for protecting and promoting the rights of intersex people in the EU.They denounce that intersex children still face human rights violations and genital mutilations in the EU, and that intersex variations continue to be treated as diseases, despite the lack of evidence supporting the success of medical treatments in the long term. They also demand more flexibility in birth registration procedures and facilitating the change of names on identity cards.In a resolution adopted with 30 votes to 7, the Committee stressed that intersexuality should no longer be dealt with as a pathology, and called on member states to pursue the removal of the category of “gender incongruence in childhood” in the International Classification of Diseases of the World Health Organisation.
MEPs condemn the high prevalence of sex normalising treatments and surgery, despite not being medically necessary in most of the cases, and encourage EU countries to follow the example of those, such as Portugal and Malta, where these surgical procedures are banned.
The text denounces that surgeries are often performed on intersex children without their prior, personal, full and informed consent, and underlines that genital mutilations can cause life-long consequences, such as psychological trauma and physical impairments.
The resolution underlines the importance of “flexible birth registration procedures” for intersex children. It points to legislation already in place in some member states that allows gender recognition based on self-determination, and encourages other countries to adopt similar rules, including flexible procedures to change gender markers and names on identity documents, including the possibility of gender-neutral names.MEPs call on the European Commission and member states to increase their support, including financial aid, to organisations fighting the stigmatisation of intersex people. They also demand the Commission to make sure that EU funds do not support research or medical projects that further contribute to human rights’ violations of intersex people.
The draft resolution will be put to a vote by the full House during the January plenary session in Strasbourg, following a debate with Council and Commission representatives.

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Romania: MEPs are deeply concerned about judicial independence and rule of law

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 17 novembre 2018

In a resolution wrapping up the plenary debate held on 3 October with Prime Minister Viorica Dăncilă, the Chamber calls on the Romanian authorities to put in place safeguards to avoid circumventing the system of checks and balances and to counter any measures which would decriminalise corruption in office. The text, passed with 473 votes to 151 and 40 abstentions, points to the new legislation on the status of judges and prosecutors, on judicial organisation and on the Superior Council of the Magistracy. In line with the warnings from the Council of Europe’s Group of States against Corruption (GRECO) and the Venice Commission, MEPs caution that the new legislation could have an impact on the independence of the judiciary, its efficiency and its quality, including negative consequences in the fight against corruption. The changes to the Criminal Code and the Criminal Procedure Code – many of which the Romanian Constitutional Court considers unconstitutional- are another source of concern, with additional effects on the capacity to combat corruption, violent crimes and organised criminality.The role of the Romanian Intelligence Service and its alleged interference in the activities of the Romanian judiciary lead the EP to suggest reinforcing Romania’s parliamentary oversight of the intelligence services.The Parliament condemns the “violent and disproportionate intervention” by the police during the mass protests in Bucharest in August 2018 and calls on the Romanian authorities to ensure a transparent, impartial and effective investigation into the actions of the riot police.MEPs also warn that the legislation on the financing, organisation and functioning of NGOs could potentially intimidate civil society and note that it may be against the principle of freedom of association and the right to privacy.The Parliament urges the European Commission to resume its annual anti-corruption monitoring in all EU member states and proposes a system of strict indicators to measure the level of corruption in each country and evaluate their anti-corruption policies.A regular, systematic and objective process to assess respect of democracy, fundamental rights and the rule of law is also necessary, according to the Parliament. Plenary will vote on a separate resolution on Wednesday, reiterating its calls for a mechanism to be established to assess the EU’s founding values in all member states every year.

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