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Home arrow newsitems arrow EU Commission v.President Reding to EuroFora: EU Prosecutor + States'Agents' Training=> Coordination

EU Commission v.President Reding to EuroFora: EU Prosecutor + States'Agents' Training=> Coordination

Written by ACM
Wednesday, 23 October 2013

 

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*Strasbourg/EU Parliament/Angelo Marcopolo/-  Foreseen by EU Lisbon Treaty and backed now also by EU Parliament, the planned EU Public Prosecutor's Office is due to be a "Light" but Efficient Structure, mainly based on Coordination of simultaneous actions  by EU Member States' National Officials,  and this makes even more important the Training currently provided to National Officials from 27 EU Member States, as f.ex. that which starts this Month at the Strasbourg University's Faculty of Law, etc., EU Commission'' vice-President Viviane Reding, an experienced also former MEP from Luxembourg, pointed out in substance, speaking to "EuroFora" at EU Parliament, whose Plenary has just adopted Today an exceptionaly important Report on the Fight against Fraud, Corruption and Organized Crime, (See Infra).


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Considering that  by Protecting EU Budget, this practicaly means also protecting EU Citizens' Money, from Fraud, Corruption and/or other serious Crimes, EU Lisbon Treaty has provided for an "Enhanced Cooperation" between several willing EU Member States, and open to all others, should automatically start, if Unanimity lacks inside EU Council, at least as far as the creation of such a Public Prosecutor Office against Financial Crimes is concerned, Reding observed earlier.

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- But, "with what means ?" Are there already sufficient possibilities for the planned EU Prosecutor to be really efficient, or do we need much more to come ?", EuroFora had asked the  EU Commission's vice President, pointing as a concrete Example to Projects such as the new  Stasbourg's University "European College" CEFIAC,  strongly supported by EU Commission, due to organize EU Member States' Officials' training for "Financial Investigations and Analysis of Crimes" (Comp. Infra).
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- "Just to be very Clear about this : The EU Public Prosecutor's Office will be a very Small Office, which Coordinates the Work", Reding stresssd in her Reply to "EuroFora"s question.


- I.e., "which says, f.ex., : - "There is a Problem here, in 3 or 4 (EU Member) Countries, and we have to Act in order to catch the Criminals".


+ "And then, the "Delegated" Public Prosecutors, which are National Prosecutors, will, then, Act, on the scene, in these 4 or 5 (EU) Member States", each.


- "They will do that, with the National Police (of the concerned EU Member Countries), with the National Courts, and under the National Rules", (f.ex. on the protection of Citizens' elementary Rights, etc).


 - "But, they will do it in the Same Time", and in a "Coordinated" way, "so that there is No more Hidding for the Criminals, (f.ex.) to go to a Country where Nothing will happen to them : No !", the competent EU Commission's vice-President pointed out.


 - Because, thanks to that EU Public Prosecutor's role, "there will be the Same  Action, in all (these EU Member) Countries,  where Criminals are operating", she clarified.


 - "The Coordination will be done by the European Prosecutor. But that will be a Small, Efficient Office : It will Not be a Big Institution, because the Real Work will be done on the level of (EU) Member States, Coordinated by the European Prosecutor".


=> I.e., practically, by triggering a Mechanism which reminds, in substance, mutatis-mutandis, at another EU interest area : that of Economy, the way in which €uroZone's 17 Member Countries, for the 1st time in History, acting remarkably Fast, decided, in an Exceptional 1st Summit of €uroZone's Heads of State/Government, back on Sunday, October 10, 2008, at Paris' Elysee Palace, under the Chairmanship of then French President Sarkozy, together with €uroGroup's Head then Luxembourg's Prime Minister Juncker, to launch a series of unprecedented, Parallel and Coordinated Actions in order to Boost and Stimulate the European  Economy which faced then Recessionist pressures from the Global Economic Crisis which had just started in the USA : Next Monday, all the 17 concerned Capitals, plus the exceptionaly associated UK, (whose Prime Minister Gordon Brawn, had participated at the Beginning of that €uroZone's 1st Summit) had started to act, from next Monday Morning,


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+ Meanwhile, the EU Commission's v. President, practically agreed with "EuroFora", that relevant Small (EU) Programs, as f.ex. that of Training of Police Officers on finding Financial Information against Organized Crime,  in al EU Member States, would be Helpful for the protection of EU Funds, because the EU Public Prosecutor, before starting to do something, he must have been, previously, well and Timely Informed about that.


 - "That is something that we (EU Commission) are doing at any rate, because we are doing a lot of Trans-Border Training, be it for Law Enforcement, but be it also for National Prosecutors, National Judges and National Lawyers", Reding replied to an "EuroFora"s subsequent Question.


EU Lisbon Treaty provides for "Automatic" Enhanced Cooperation mechanisms, whenever Unanimity between the 27 EU Member States might lack, just in cases concering the protection of EU's Budget, as things stand now, Reding also explained. So that, all other cases, f.ex. Non-Financial aspects of Organzed Crime, etc., this also has to come, but as a 2nd step, she indicated previously.


- This Fits well, as a 1st step on EU Budget, f.ex. with the brand new "CEIFAC" EU program, (which stands for "European College of Financial Investigations and Analysis on Crime", in French)... that University Professor Chantal Cutajar, has just inaugurated last week in Strasbourg, in order to Train Officials from all over the 27 EU Member Countries, with the support mainly of EU Commission, (completed by Strasbourg's Region Alsace and the City, as well as French Gendarmerie), in cooperation also with various Experts' bodies from EuroPol, Switzerland, France, Italy, Spain, Belgium, Luxembourg; Bulgaria, etc.

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-Professor Cutajar, an experienced and motivated in the Fight against Crime Universitarian, speaking earlier to "EuroFora", noted the fact that, with the Completion of the 1st round of this kind of centralized EU Member States' Officials' Training on Financial Investigations and Analysis on Crime, scheduled in about 2 Years (2013-2015), the move comes just on Time in order to be ready to facilitate a fast and efficient functioning of a possible EU Prosecutor's office, initially focused on EU Budget-related frauds and other Financial Crimes, which is expected to be a very important and intereting development for Europe in the forseable Future, as she told us.

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- Replying to another among "EuroFora"s Questions in a Press Conference organized for the EU "CEIFAC" program at Strasbourg's University earlier, together with EuroMP Catherine Trautman, the Commander of Alsace Region's Gedarmerie,  Colonel Thierry Thomas, the President of Strasbourg's Region, Alsace's, Economic and Innovation Committee, former Minister, Francois Loos, and other Officials, Cutajar also pointed at the fact that, even if  CEIFAC' main domain of action certainly is focused on Financial Investigations and Analysis, nevertheless, it can naturally Help, ipso facto, also in ord to Fight against Corruption as well as other various forms of Organized Crime,  by dealing with the Financial aspects of any Organized Crime.
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+ These moves came shortly before EU Parliament's Plenary adopts, Today, in Strasbourg, an exceptionaly crucial Resolution on "Organised Crime, Corruption and Money Laundering", containing a set of concrete "recommendations on action and initiatives to be taken", which is the "Final Report" of a "Special Committee" on these issues, drafted by Italian MEP Salvatore Iacolino, who stressed, at a Press Conference given on Tuesday here,  that "this will also be the International Day for the Memory of organized Crime's Victims".


"Green" and other MEPs, while supporting the main thrust of this Report, expressed, however, certain Minority Reserves, calling not to "ovesimplify" some "Threars" concerning "Surveillance", f.ex. inside EU "Systems" for "Passenger Name Records" and "Finance Tracking", even if it's due to focus on "Terrorist" activities, as they said.


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  imag0573_400

    An "Eugenic" loophole Amendment, which might expose to Dangers reminiscent of "3rd Reich's" notorious Genetic Abuses, hidden at the last minute inside an otherwise Good, larger Health policy Package scheduled to be voted on Thursday, was strongly denounced by a coalition of MEPs from various Political Groups and Countries, in a Press Conference held this afternoon at EU Parliament in Strasbourg.

    Mainly calling to "Select Human Embryos", via "Genetic Counselling" and "pre-implantation" Techniques including "Genetic Tests", in order to "Eradicate Hereditary rare Diseases", it might open ways to Dangerous Practices in Future, they denounced in substance.

    But they also made it clear that a much larger Report inside which this Controversial Amendment "No 15" was added in dubious circumstances, officialy destinated to struggle against "Rare Diseases", and drafted by Professor Antonios Trakatellis, was otherwise "an Excellent Report", aiming at a "completely Uncontroversial target" of Health policy on which "all MEPs and Experts are united, believing that Europe should act" to protect People's Health (See "EuroFora"'s earlier News).

    The controversy came at a particularly delicate moment for the EU in relation to Citizens, at the eve of June 2009 EU Elections, and shortly before Ireland re-votes for "Lisbon Treaty"..    

- Denouncing risks of "an Eugenic demand, very similar to what we had during the 3rd Reich in Germany, but now coming from some Scientisists themselves", German ChristianDemocrat/EPP MEP Dr. Peter Liese stressed that critical MEPs were against "Eugenic" engineering with "Selection of Human Embryos", and anything which might ultimately lead up to to a "Selection of Human Race". It doesn't help to "eradicate" Human Lives, he added.


    Several Experts and NGOs expressed "Deep Concern", as f;ex. DR M.C. Cornel of the "European Society of Human Genetics", which stressed, on this occasion, that "the importance of Non-Directiveness in Reproductive issues is a Central characteristic of Human Genetics, after the Atrocities committed in the name of Genetics in the first half or the 20th Century".

     - "This is completely Unacceptable", stressed Italian Liberal MEP Vittorio Prodi, on the Controversial Amendment, also because pushes to "eliminate early Human Life", as he noted.

     - "This opens a Dangerous Road, rather a Motorway", denounced Danish MEP Mrs Margrette Auken, from the "Greens", observing that various similar attempts were made in the Past "not only in Germany, but also in several other Countries, "even at the 1970ies", "f.ex. on forced Sterilisation of Roma" People, and other criticisable situations f.ex. in the UK, in Sweden, etc. as she said.

    + Other NGOs, as f.ex. "LebenHilfe" from Berlin, added that, among various other Risks, could also be that, by exploiting the pre-implantation Genetic Diagnostics and the Selection of "healthy" Embryos, some may "propagate" several "Eugenic" aims, starting f.ex. by pushing to eradicate Human Livies which might "Cost too much" to preserve, ultimately exposing to dangers reminiscent of the "3rd Reich"'s atrocious abuses.

    In consequence, ChristianDemocrats/EPP and "Green" MEPs "decided by Majority to vote against" this Controversial Amendment, anounced to Journalists the 5 MEPs who participated in the Press Conference, representing a wide spectrum, from Liberals to "Greens" and ChristianDemocrats, and from Hungary, Italy, Germany and Danemark up to Ireland (Gay Mitchell), etc.
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    Hungarian ChristianDemocrat MEP Laszlo Surjan said "that it was "Suddenly, at the End of the Procedure" in Committee, that "appeared this (Controversial) Amendment, which has nothing to do" with the main purpose of the Report, on which all agreed.

    He denounced an "Unhonest" move, and called to "avoid this kind of unacceptable situations". Nobody should "Select People", Surjan stressed.

    - "We (MEPs) had No Chance to Discuss" this last-minute Amendment earlier added at a Committee's level, said German MEP Peter Liese

    Speaking to "EuroFora", Dr. Liese, the Spokesman of the ChristianDemocrat/EPP Group in EU Parliament, said that MEPs didn't oppose other references of the Report f.ex. on "Genetic Tests", because they were "no proposals" to impose them, while, on the contrary, there was "a Problem" if anyone attempted to "impose" f.ex. this or that Genetic Technique and "Genetic Counselling", etc. to the People on human reproduction.
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The precise Text :
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    Controversial parts of Amendment No 15 ask mainly "to lead finally to the Eradication" of "Hereditary" "rare diseases", "through Genetic Counselling .., and ..pre-Implantation Selection of healthy Embryos".

    But  EU Rapporteur Professor Trakatellis, said to "EuroFora" that fears should be alleviated by Guarantees that all this should be done only "where appropriate", when it's "not contrary to existing National Law", and "always on a Voluntary basis", according to other Parts of the Amendment.

    He stressed that the main aim was to allow "a free and informed choice of persons involved", without imposing them anything :  - "It's not an obligatory, but advisary" text, he said.

    To make that point clear, he was ready, in agreement with many MEPs, to eventually drop at least that part of the controversial Amendment which initially called for "efforts to ..lead finally to the Eradication of those rare diseases" "which are Hereditary".

    But, until late Wednesday evening, reportedly together with many other MEPs, he stood by all the rest of the controversial Amendment, (fex. on the "Genetic Counselling" and the "pre-implantation Selection of healthy Embryos"), so that critical MEPs, going from ChristianDemocrats as Dr. Liese, to "Greens" or "Ind/Dem", observed to "EuroFora" that "this was not enough" to close the dangerous loophole.

    Particularly since, as Professor Trakatellis noted himself, "this is already allowed to the U.K.", and "other National Legislations would probably follow, sooner or later" in a similar direction. As for a general call to "Eradicate Hereditary rare Diseases", this "should happen, at any case, in practice, de facto", to protect public Health.

    On the contrary, "our goal should be to help patients suffering from rare diseases, not to eradicate the patients. In case of genetic disease risk, the decision should not be guided by scenarios" made by politicians. "Perents who may decide to accept a child, even if handicapped or with genetic disease, must be respected and supported with solidarity", critical MEPs stated.

    - "Any Pressure" to "a patient or couple (who "should be able to make an informed choice consistent with their own values"),"from health Professionals, Public Health Policies or Governemental Institutions, or Society at large, should be avoided", stresses the "European Society for Human Genetics".

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Each MEP's vote will be registered !

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The Socialist Group requested a "Split vote" on the Amendment 15, first without, and afterwards with the words "lead finally to the Eradication" etc.


    But the first "split vote" leaves intact all the other parts of the Controversial Amendment, (i.e. "Genetic Counselling", "Selection of healthy Embryos", etc).

    That's why, 3 Groups of MEPs : ChristianDemocrats/EPP, "Greens/EFA", and "Ind/Dem", have asked for "Roll Call Votes", on everything regarding the Controversial Amendment No 15, and on the final outcome of the resulting Report as amended, which will register all the individual positions to be taken by each MEP.   

Something which will obviously make each MEP think twice before voting for one or another choice, to be sure that he/she will make the right choice in front of EU Citizens, particularly at these pre-Election times...


    Crucial Votes were scheduled between 12 Noon and 1 p.m. local Strasbourg time, in the middle of a long series of various other Reports, and after a long Public Debate on the larger Health policy package, from 9 to 11.50 am.

    The specific Report inside which was hidden the controversial Amendment is due to be debated between 11 and 12 am.

    So that more last-minute Surprises may not be excluded a priori...

    Particularly at the present Historic moment, when even the Institutional Future of the EU depends on the result of a second Referendum on "Lisbon Treaty", later this year, in ...Ireland, a mainly Catholic country, where People are particularly sensitive in such kind of socio-cultural and values issues...
 

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     (Draft due to be updated).
 
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