The total number of terrorist attacks and related arrests in the EU significantly increased in 2012

The 2013 EU Terrorism Situation and Trend Report published by Europol shows that the total number of terrorist attacks and related arrests in the EU significantly increased in 2012, in contrast to previous years. Internet remains a key facilitator for terrorism-related activities.

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New platform created by the Commission for fighting tax evasion

The European Commission sets up a Platform for Tax Good Governance that has as main aim to monitor member states' progress in tackling aggressive tax planning and clamping down on tax havens.

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The biggest anti-terrorism exercise at EU level takes places within the ATLAS Network framework

The European Commission announced that the 2013 practical exercise, named “Common Challenge” that simulates terrorist attacks in nine different EU member states in different areas of public life, will be carried out on April 17 and 18 by the Atlas Network. This network is an association consisting of special police units of the 27 EU member states working on countering terrorism and criminal acts.

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European Court of Justice dismissed the actions brought by Spain and Italy on the enhanced cooperation for a single patent

The actions brought by Spain and Italy against the Council’s decision authorising enhanced cooperation in the area of the single European patent have been dismissed by the European Court of Justice because it as held to be unfounded Spain and Italy’s argument that the protection conferred by that unitary patent would not be advantageous in terms of uniformity.

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Commission has concerns over the compatibility of the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution of Hungary with EU legislation

Following a first legal analysis, the European Commission has raised serious concerns over the compatibility of the Fourth Amendment to the Hungarian Fundamental Law with EU legislation and with the principle of the rule of law in a letter sent to Prime Minister Viktor Orbán. Among other issues, the letter refers about the conformity with EU law of the new articles of the Hungarian Constitution on the clause on European Court of Justice judgements entailing payment obligations.

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A report highlights areas where the EU should pay particular attention with regard to the EU's Internal Security

According to the European Commission's annual report on the implementation of the EU's Internal Security Strategy, organised crime and cybercrime, along with trafficking in human beings and the increase in violent extremism are major security threats that the EU continues to face, together with money laundering and corruption.

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New comparative tool to promote effective justice systems in the European Union

The European Commission presented the ‘European Justice Scoreboard’ that has as main objective to provide objective, reliable and comparable data on the functioning of the justice systems in the EU’s 27 Member States. The 2013 Justice Scoreboard focuses on the parameters of a justice system which contribute to the improvement of the business and investment climate.

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MEPs propose to establish a public prosecutor to protect EU financial interests

The Special Committee against Organised Crime in the European Parliament suggested to the EU that it should establish a public prosecutor to protect its financial interests and introduce an EU-wide definition of Mafia-style crime. MEPs' proposal also suggests that all member states should simplify their rules on confiscating criminals' assets.

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Council approved informal agreement on mutual recognition of protection measures in civil matters

The political agreement reached by the Council and the European Parliament's negotiators was formally adopted by the Council on 8 March. The regulation will apply to protection measures ordered with a view to protecting a person when there exist serious grounds for considering that that person's life, physical or psychological integrity, personal liberty, security or sexual integrity is at risk all over the European Union.

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Slight decrease in the overall number of cases brought before the EU Court of Justice

Statistics concerning judicial activity in 2012 regarding the Court of Justice, the General Court and the Civil Service Tribunal show that a slight decrease in the overall number of cases brought before the three courts. These statistics also show that the duration of proceedings before the Court of Justice and the General Court continues to decrease significantly.

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Commission launched two public consultations on EU measures to fight tax evasion

The European Commission launched two public consultations on specific measures which could improve tax collection - EU Tax Identification Number (EU TIN)- and ensure better tax compliance across the EU - the EU Taxpayer's Code. The consultations will run until 17 May 2013.

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EU-wide protection will become a reality to victims of violence

The European Parliament and the Council of Ministers reached a political agreement on a proposal by the European Commission for an EU-wide protection order. The agreement means women who have suffered domestic violence will be able to rely on a restraining order obtained in their home country wherever they are in the EU.

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