An open and secure Europe

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Dictamen del CESE: An open and secure Europe

Key points

  • The EESC believes that the starting point for policies on freedom, security and justice must be protection of the fundamental rights guaranteed by the European Convention on Human Rights and the Charter of Fundamental Rights.
  • The Committee is concerned to note that intolerance, racism and xenophobia towards immigrants are on the rise in Europe and also that in some Member States the protection of fundamental rights is being eroded. The EESC proposes that the Commission designate a single Commissioner to strengthen and adopt measures to protect fundamental rights.
  • The European Union must strive towards the consolidation of an international system that facilitates and regulates immigration and mobility, based on the relevant UN and ILO conventions.
  • The EESC must be involved in the debate between the Commission, the European Parliament and the Council on an open and secure Europe.
  • Immigrants make a positive contribution to the economic and social development and diversity of Europe. Without a robust migration policy, when the crisis is over and the economic cycle changes, the problems caused by the demographic situation may worsen.
  • The EU must set up a common asylum system with harmonised legislation. The Dublin Convention should be replaced with a more solidarity-based system.
  • A credible focus on irregular immigration and returns requires vigorous action against organised criminal networks smuggling and trafficking human beings, with closer coordination between the MS.
  • The EU must take responsibility for monitoring its external borders, which are the borders of the entire Schengen area. Frontex should become a European border guard service.
  • The EESC proposes that Europol become a European agency under a European political or judicial authority, with a remit that extends beyond its current coordinating role.