Milestone vote on Frontex report by Nationalist MEP

Next Tuesday, the European Parliament is going to vote on a new law giving Frontex a renewed mandate with more resources and tools at its disposal.

If approved, the law will increase Frontex’s visibility by establishing the European Border Guard Teams.

The law also purports to strengthen Frontex effectiveness and monitor the protection of human rights, especially those of people seeking international protection in the course of the agency’s activities, and increase democratic scrutiny on Frontex by the European Parliament (EP).

This EU law is the result of an agreement reached between the EP rapporteur, MEP Simon Busuttil, and the Council of Ministers after six trilogue meetings.   

“After six years of Frontex’s operations, there is a clear need to review its operations – not least, because it failed to live up to expectations,” Busuttil said.

“Frontex was asked to start running when it didn’t yet know how to walk. The demands put on this agency since its very inception were huge.

“Sadly, most member states failed to honour their pledges of providing assets for Frontex’s missions. I think this was the most pressing issue because it hindered the effectiveness of the agency.”

If this law enters into force, Frontex would be able to purchase, lease, own and co-own assets. Through compulsory solidarity, member states would be legally bound to honour their commitments for national border guards assigned or seconded to the agency. Frontex would also have the power to process personal data obtained during missions and use it in the fight against criminality.

 “We gave due importance to ‘visibility’. The new notion of ‘European Border Guards teams’ should capture the public’s imagination. This is something the previous labels of ‘Frontex Joint support Teams’ and ‘Raprid Border Intervention Teams (RABITS)’ did not manage to achieve,” Busuttil said.

“Serious accusations have been leveled against Frontex when it came to saving-lives-at-sea. This new law sets up a Consultative Forum on fundamental rights which would act as a watchdog on Frontex. The new Office of a Fundamental rights Officer, within Frontex, would help it navigate better. But crucially, in the case of a breach of human rights, Frontex missions would be suspended or terminated.”

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little man little talents.
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Before all this new legislation one should consider a legislation that ensures that any state within the EU should honour the right for any vessel in distress to be escorted to the nearest port of call and not shift responsibility on the state that is responsible for the search and rescue area. This happened in the past when migrants in the vicinity of Lampedus were refused entry by the Italian state and escorted to Malta which was hundreds of Kilometres away. Besides all this good talk one has to ensure that there is the real will to make Frontex work.
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Luke Camilleri
Dan ukoll b'talenti limitati.....?
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Frontex ferry service may soon be more efficient then Arriva.
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Kultant jiftah halqu biex juri li ghadu jezisti!
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Helenio Galea
Troppo tardi. Six years too late.
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As Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom reminded us all around 3 weeks ago "Frontex is not there to push back people" but to assist and facilitate the asylum process... and again: "Frontex is not there to hinder people from coming," they are there to assist and facilitate... She was speaking about the Libyan conflict and the flow of migrants in the Mediterranean - see video below (from around 13:10): Cecilia Malmstrom on BBC's HardTalk (duration 24:52) - http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b013dvyh/HARDtalk_Cecilia_Malmstrom/ (Note that this video can only be viewed in the UK - you'd need to download Expat Shield to view it).
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Will they have the power to push the illegal immigrants boats back? If not they are useless and just a waste of money and resources.