Remarks by Commissioner Avramopoulos on managing migration and on upgrading the EU Visa Information System

Dear all,
The migration situation in the EU and its neighbourhood has continued to be relatively stable, but recent developments call for vigilance and continuous efforts and coordination from everyone. While there has been a steady decrease on the Cen… Continue Reading

Remarks by Commissioner Avramopoulos following the informal Justice and Home Affairs Council in Valletta

Dear friends,
I would like to take this opportunity to warmly thank the Maltese Presidency, and my friend and colleague Carmelo Abela, for their excellent work in organising this first informal meeting of the Justice and Home Affairs Ministers here in … Continue Reading

Pittella: “Le Pen lies about Schengen just to take advantage of people’s fears”

Marine Le Pen chooses to lie just to take advantage of the electorate’s fears. The insane idea of suspending Schengen, taking back Europe to the time of national borders, represents the pure essence of populism. It is not by raising walls all around Europe that we can ensure our citizens’ security. It would just give an illusion of security rather than an actual one.
The S&D Group believes that the most comprehensive way to respond to the terrorist attacks is by putting in place a mix of preventive and reactive measures, a mix of internal and external dimensions, involving the European Union’s partners.
Furthermore, this can be achieved by contributing to the establishment of a European Intelligence and an increased judicial cooperation under a clear and strong parliamentary scrutiny. This should be combined with a clear definition of the European Passenger Name Record (PNR), particularly its purpose. Once defined, we could determine the data retention period.
The European Union should meanwhile maintain and optimise the current framework of the Schengen agreement and use more effectively the existing instruments including the Schengen Information System.
Moreover, we need a positive approach to integration which can be reached by promoting education and integration, as well as by tackling poverty and unemployment.
Finally, we urge the European Council, along with the European Commission and the European Parliament, to promote a truly coherent, consolidated and comprehensive common foreign affairs policy, focusing on the international cooperation with third countries with authentic crisis resolution mechanisms in conflict areas like Nigeria, Syria, Libya, Iraq and Middle East.

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