JHA Council Declaration on the EU Response to the London Bombings
|Publication Date||13 July 2005|
|Citation / Document Symbol||11158/1/05 Rev.1|
|Cite as||European Union, JHA Council Declaration on the EU Response to the London Bombings, 13 July 2005, 11158/1/05 Rev.1, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/42fb11894.html [accessed 27 December 2014]|
OUTCOME OF PROCEEDINGS
From: Council (Justice and Home Affairs)
Subject: Council Declaration on the EU response to the London bombings
The Council adopted the revised Declaration attached hereto.
The Council of the European Union:
1. Condemns the terrorist attacks on London. It sends its profound condolences to the victims and their families, in honour of whom two minutes of silence will be held across the European Union on Thursday 14 July at 12:00 (London time). It stands united in solidarity as it did after the attacks on Madrid last year, and is absolutely determined that the terrorists will not succeed.
2. Considers that the attacks are an affront to universal values on which the European Union is based. Central to those values is a commitment to democratic and open institutions and societies governed by the rule of law within which people of all faiths and backgrounds can live, work and prosper together. The terrorists who reject that commitment and seek to use violence to impose their ideas will be defeated.
3. Strengthens its commitment to combating terrorism and upholding the fundamental principles of freedom, security and justice. Working with the assistance of the EU Counter-Terrorism Co-ordinator, and with the European Commission and the European Parliament, the Council will accelerate implementation of the EU Action Plan on Combating Terrorism and other existing commitments.
4. Declares that its immediate priority is to build on the existing strong EU framework for pursuing and investigating terrorists across borders, in order to impede terrorists' planning, disrupt supporting networks, cut off any funding and bring terrorists to justice.
- The Council will:
* agree the Framework Decisions on the Retention of Telecommunications Data (October 2005), on the European Evidence Warrant (December 2005), and on the exchange of information between law enforcement authorities (December 2005); adopt the Decision on the exchange of information concerning terrorist offences (September 2005);
* combat terrorist financing by: agreeing by December 2005 a Regulation on Wire Transfers; adopting the Third Money Laundering Directive and the Regulation on cash control by September 2005; agreeing a Code of Conduct to prevent the misuse of charities by terrorists (December 2005); reviewing the EU's performance overall (December 2005) and urging Member States to ensure that comprehensive financial investigation is a part of all terrorist investigations and to develop robust asset freezing powers.
- In addition, the Council urges Member States to:
* intensify the exchange of police and judicial information, in particular through Europol (and its Counter-Terrorist Task Force) and Eurojust, and improve support from Member States' security and intelligence services to the EU Situation Centre, in accordance with the Hague Programme (report December 2005);
* improve information sharing on lost and stolen explosives, including by drawing on the Commission's forthcoming communication on explosives.
* implement the recommendations that arise from the peer evaluation process in order to improve national counter-terrorism arrangements and capabilities.
* make full use of joint investigation teams.
- The Council calls on the Commission to:
* present proposals on data protection principles in the field of law enforcement and, in accordance with the Hague programme, on the principle of availability by October 2005 and, on that basis, to bring forward the communication on enhanced interaction between the VIS, SIS II and EURODAC and proposal for law enforcement access to the VIS by November 2005.
5. Underlines the importance of preventing people turning to terrorism by addressing the factors that contribute to radicalisation and recruitment to terrorist groups. The Council will agree by December 2005 an EU Strategy setting out action on this issue.
6. Stresses the ned to reduce vulnerability to attack by protecting citizens and infrastructure.
- The Council:
* calls on Member States to agree common standards for security features and secure issuing procedures for ID cards (December 2005), with detailed standards agreed as soon as possible thereafter;
* will develop further the ability to share visa information via the Visa Information System (VIS) and law-enforcement information via the second generation of the Schengen Information System (SISII), ensuring stronger and more flexible information systems to protect our external borders and internal security;
* will prioritise the roll-out of biometrics, i.e. facial recognition and fingerprinting of visa applicants under VIS to regions/countries of high risk;
* urges Member States to take a collaborative approach to the provision of biometric capacity to visa issuing posts;
* will revise and reinforce common standards on aviation security (end 2005), and urges Member States to implement agreed EU standards on maritime security and security at ports;
* will agree a European Programme on the protection of critical infrastructure, including where appropriate road and rail transport, by the end of 2005 to raise standards across Member States;
* calls on the Commission to bring forward the proposal on air line passenger name records by October 2005.
7. Highlights the importance of improving our ability to manage and minimise the consequences of terrorist attacks. The Council invites:
* Member States to undertake regular joint counter-terrorism exercises to test resilience;
* the EU Counter-Terrorism Coordinator and the Commission, as appropriate, to report by December 2005 on the development of:
- emergency response capabilities both at Member State and EU level, including those required to respond to a bio-terrorist attack, and building on civil protection modules of the Member States, ;
- arrangements to share information, ensure coordination and enable collective decision-making in an emergency, particularly for terrorist attacks on more than one Member State.
8. Restates the importance of solidarity and support to the victims of terrorism, including by making funds available to victims and their families.
9. Emphasises that this is a worldwide agenda. The EU and its Member States will continue to support the key role of the United Nations and will work within that forum to reach agreement on the Comprehensive Convention against Terrorism at the UN Summit in September and to develop a global counter-terrorism strategy. The Council and the Commission shall reinforce work with priority third countries, by increasing individual and collective commitments to technical assistance and capacity building to support them, including in the area of countering radicalisation and terrorist financing. The European Union will continue to work closely with the United States, other partners and key international bodies.
10. Will continue to assess, in the light of the brutal and tragic incidents in London, whether further measures are necessary at the European level. The Council will review progress by December 2005, including on national implementation of EU measures in order to ensure that the Union has the right framework for combating terrorism. A reinforced Action Plan will be presented to the December European Council.