Single permit Directive back to EP Civil Liberties Committee

European Parliament Civil Liberties Committee has backed Commission's proposal which establishes that the proposed single permit should be enough to enable third-country workers to live and work in the European Union and therefore allowing Member States to issue additional documents would defeat the whole purpose of the single permit. In their decision, members of the Committee backed the original Commission text on this and confirmed December's plenary vote on the employment issues.

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EC presents proposal for an EU Passenger Name Record Directive

On 2 February 2010 the European Commission put forward a proposal for an EU Passenger Name Record (PNR) Directive which aims to fight serious crime and terrorism. Under this proposal air carriers will be obliged to provide EU Member States with data on passengers entering or departing from the EU, whilst guaranteeing a high level of protection of privacy and personal data.

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Europe celebrates Data Protection Day

As the exchange of information across the globe grows and becomes faster and faster, issues related to data protection affect all citizens in the most varied areas of their life, including  their cross-border dimension. Working, dealing with public authorities, buying goods or services, travelling or surfing the internet, are activities which create an ever growing information flow. By celebrating the Data Protection Day on 28 January, the Council of Europe and the European Commission are joining forces to promote the fundamental right to data protection.

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Parliament holds deep debate over Hungarian media law

The new Hungarian media law which has created important controversy over the first weeks of Hungary's EU Presidency, was the object of a heated debate at the Civil Liberties and Culture Committees in Strasbourg on 17 January. While some MEPs urged for the immediate withdrawal of the law, some others defended the option to wait until the Commission releases the results of its legal assesment.

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EC consults on its first Report about enforcement of intellectual property rights

The European Commission has launched on 12 January a public consultation to prompt the views of other European institutions, the Member States and private stakeholders on the findings reflected in the report on the application of the Directive and the technical paper attached to it. Interested parties can submit their opinions by 31 March 2011.

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Cooperation and new types of action are required to combat cybercrime, Europol's iOCTA report says

As Internet connectivity continues to spread, EU citizens and organisations will be subjected both to a larger volume of cyber attacks, and to attacks from previously underconnected areas of the world. Combatting cybercrime will therefore require new international strategic and operational partnerships. These are some of the findings put forward by the recently released  Europol’s iOCTA report.

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EC presents the first report on the application of Intellectual Property Rights enforcement Directive

In its recent report about the application of 2004 Directive on the enforcement of intellectual property rights, the European Commission highlights the important progress which has been achieved since it was adopted and implemented in the Member States. However, Commission also points out the important increase in the economic value of IPR infringements and the need to pay attention to certain issues such as the observance of procedures, legal proceedings and protective measures, as well as taking into account the changes introduced by the Internet and digital technologies.

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Regulation implementing enhanced cooperation for divorce and separation already in force

The Official Journal of the European Union published on 29 December 2010 Council Regulation (EU) Nº 1259/2010 of 20 December 2010 implementing enhanced cooperation in the area of the law applicable to divorce and legal separation. This rule which will provide higher legal certainty for international couples, represents the first application of the enhanced cooperation mechanism within the Lisbon Treaty.

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EC launches dedicated website to fight human trafficking

On 21 December, Commissioner Malmström officially launched the new website dedicated to the fight against trafficking in human beings, a tool which aims at supporting actions in this field. Commissioner Malström was backed by Myria Vassiliadou, the new Anti Trafficking Coordinator, who will act in order to strengthen EU action against human trafficking

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Agreement over the new rules for Commission's implementing powers

After nine months of negotiations, the European Parliament confirmed on 16 December the agreement with the Council on the new regulation on implementing powers for the Commission. This new regulation, proposed by the Commission shortly after the entry into force of the Treaty of Lisbon, means a wide ranging reform of the so-called 'comitology' system. It will enter into force on 1st March and will automatically replace the existing system.

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Parliament approves tougher rules to combat trafficking in human beings

Traffickers in human beings are to face tougher penalties for their crime and victims will be entitled to better protection and assistance, under a new EU law approved by the European Parliament. The new rules will apply to trafficking in the sex industry or labour exploitation in, for example, construction work, farming or domestic service.

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Parliament backs European Protection Order for victims

The European Parliament has voted in the Plenary session on 14 December and approved the European Protection Order which seeks to ensure that victims of crimes including violence, harassment, homophobia or white slavery receive the same level of protection against their aggressors in all EU countries. While an agreement with the Belgian Presidency has already been reached, it must still be confirmed by a qualified majority of Member States in the Council.

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