Commission presents EU Internal Security Strategy setting a broad common agenda

The European Commission adopted on 22 November the “EU Internal Security Strategy in Action” which includes a series of 41 actions grouped under 5 strategic objectives aiming to disrupt criminal and terrorist networks, protect citizens businesses and societies, as well as increasing security awareness and improve crisis management and readiness. With the Lisbon Treaty as a new legal framework, the Internal Security Strategy in Action should become the shared agenda for the EU over the next four years.

Building on the Internal Security Strategy adopted by the Council in February 2010, and within the global perspective of the European Security Strategy, the European Commission has put forward its Communication “The EU Internal Security Strategy in Action: Five steps towards a more secure Europe” seeking to identify clear strategic goals for the EU’s internal security policies, and to clarify roles and responsibilities as part of a shared agenda. This Ciommunication proposes how Member states should work together over the next four years to be more effective in fighting and preventing serious and organised crime, terrorism and cybercrime, in strengthening the management of EU external borders and in building resilience to natural and man-made disasters.

The EU Internal Security Strategy in Action represents a shared agenda for Member States, the European Parliament, the Commission, the Council and agencies and others, including civil society and local authorities. As a result of this communication, the Commission believes that the EU will be able to measure progress against these strategic objectives, determine what further action is needed, and demonstrate to citizens the benefits of the EU’s role.

EU Internal Security Strategy in Action: 5 strategic objectives and 41 specific measures

  • Disrupt international crime networks threatening our society: The Commission proposes a series of proposals such measures to quickly and efficiently seize and confiscate criminal profits and assets (2011), a proposal on the use of EU Passenger Name Records (2011), as well as a proposal on monitoring and assisting Member States in the fight against corruption (2011).
  • Prevent terrorism and address radicalisation and recruitment: A policy for EU extraction and analysis of financial messaging data, EU TFTP (2011), as well as the establishment of an EU radicalisation-awareness network and measures to support civil society in exposing, translating and challenging violent extremist propaganda (2011). Furthermore, the Commission proposed measures to strengthen EU transport security policy (2011).
  • Raise levels of security for citizens and businesses in cyberspace: among the measures proposed to fight against cyberattacks, Commission proposes to establish an EU cybercrime centre (2013), as well as a network of Computer Emergency Response Teams (2012), a European information sharing and alert system, EISAS (2013).
  • Strengthen security through border management: this target will imply among other measures, the establishment of a European external border surveillance system, EUROSUR (2011), a better analysis to identify 'hot spots' at the external borders (2011), and joint reports on human trafficking, human smuggling and smuggling of illicit goods as a basis for joint operations (2011).
  • Increase Europe's resilience towards crises and disasters: the Communication includes a proposal on the implementation of the solidarity clause (2011), and for a European Emergency Response Capacity (2011), as well as the establishment of a risk management policy linking threat and risk assessments to decision making (2014).

Security related activities, Funding and European Security Strategy consistency

All priorities will be reflected both in the operational planning of EU agencies, at national level, and in Commission work programmes. The Commission will ensure that security-related activities, including security research, industrial policy and projects under EU internal security-related funding programmes, are coherent with the strategic objectives, and security research will continue to be funded under the multiannual research and development framework programme.

In this line, EU funding which might be necessary for the period 2011-2013 will be made available within the current ceilings of the multiannual financial framework. For the period post-2013, internal security funding will be examined in the context of a Commission-wide debate on all proposals to be made for that period. As part of that debate, the Commission will consider thefeasibility of setting up an Internal Security Fund.

The European External Action Service will also be invited to participate to ensure consistency with the wider European Security Strategy and to exploit synergies between internal and external policies, including risk and threat assessments.