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Inicio arrow newsitems arrow EUParliament Votes EU External Border-Guard:+Towards Endorsing Greece Neighbouring Countries Checks?

EUParliament Votes EU External Border-Guard:+Towards Endorsing Greece Neighbouring Countries Checks?

Escrito por ACM
06.07.16
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*Strasbourg/Angelo Marcopolo/- A First EU Parliament's Step towards fully Legitimising a similar kind of reaction as that of Greece's Neighbouring Countries at the Western Balkan Routes, who notoriously decided, Alll Together and Joined by the Visegrad Group, to establish Border Checks and even Blockades in 2016 as long as Athens' New Government persisted to abstain from Pushing Back mainly Turkish Smugglers' Ships illegaly crossing into EU + Shengen External Borders to Import a Massive Influx of 1,3 Million Asylum Seekers/irregular Migrants through Turkey in 2015/2016, (thereby Succeeding to Help consideraby Cut the Number of Mass-Tresspassers in Spectacular Proportions quite Fast, and even Before a Controversial, UnPopular and Costly EU - Turkey deal  entered into force, Later-on - See: http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/unpopulareuvisafreefor80millionsturksuseless.html ), seems well to have been made Today by a Strong Majority of MEPs after Adopting a series of Amendments on EU Commision's proposal for the Creation of an EU External Borders' Guard Agency.


Even if it could obviously become in Future a much-Needed Amelioration, (often Debated and Welcomed Recently both by EU Citisens and various Politicians, but also by EU Heads of States/Governments' Summits, etc), nevertheless, it's not so much the anounced Establishment of that Agency in itself, (which is Expected, after Official Endorsing by an EU Summit, to be set up from Autumn 2016), that represents The Most radicaly Ground-Breaking Point :


This New EU Tool, - obviously Indispensable for a Sovereign, Independent and Safe Europe which badly Needs to become Able to Control its own External Borders, as well as in order to Safeguard EU Citizens' Free Movement around Internal EU Borders particularly at the Shenghen Area,- nevertheless, is Not Yet a Really nor Sufficiently Big Move :


F.ex., inter alia, the projected Number of EU Border and Coast-Guards would gather, at the Horizon of 2020, Only One (1) such Guard per several Dozens of Kms of EU Coast-Line (sic !), EU won't have its own Agents, but will Depend on Mobilizing, Each Time, various Quotas of National Guards "Ready to Use", lended by EU Member States, and, if it Faces a Reluctant Member Country Obstinated into practicaly Leaving its Part of EU's External Borders UnProtected, even at the Detriment of the European General Interest, it could Only Act after a rather Heavy Procedure, including an EU Parliament's Information and Consultation, an EU Commission's Proposal, and an EU Council's Official Decision.


However, it's also true that the projected EU Border/Coast Guard will be a Mechanism Working with a "2 Levels" System, i.e. mainly by Organizing Europe-Wide Information Networks on Border Protection, and mainly by Intervening on the Spot, to Help any EU Member State facing an Emergency Situation at EU's External Borders, particularly by Adding a 1.600 - strong EU Force and relevant Equipment, whenever a National Government might, eventualy, Feel Necessary to Ask for its Support.


But, a more Important (and Hotly Debated) Innovation is that a Majority of European Countries could, from now on, take Action to Protect EU's General Interest vis a vis a Refusal to move eventualy opposed by a Recalcitrant Member State which Fails to Defend its Part of EU's External Borders, even when there is a Serious Threat to Disrupt EU Citizens' Freedom of Movement inside the Shengen Area and/or to Harm Europe as a whole, as has just Voted 483 MEPs, against Only 181 Today iN Strasbourg.

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Perhaps the Most Interesting and Topical Point is also that, (as EU Parliament's Rapporteur on the EU Border/Coast Guard, Artis Pabriks, a mainstream ChristianDemocrat MEP from Latvia, Repeatedly Stressed, Both by Writting, and through Press Spokespersons, as well as in a subsequent Press Conference in Strasbourg), several European Neighbouring Countries will be able to Trigger Action to Establish Checks, on a Temporary basis, and Take Full Control of their Internal EU Borders vis a vis such a Recalcitrant EU Member State which might Fail to protect its part of EU's External Borders, while also Refusing an efficient EU Direct Help on the spot, despite an External Danger Threatening also its European Neighbours.


I.e. Something which is strikingly Similar to what has just Happened, from February/Early March 2016, at the so-called "Western Balkan Route", when Serbia, FYROM, Croatia, Slovenia, Hungary and Austria, supported also by the rest of "Visegrad" Countries (Poland, Czech Republic and Slovakia : the Incoming New EU President for July-December 2016, Comp. Statement of the Prime Minister of Slovakia, Robert Fico, in Reply to an "Eurofora"'s Question at a Press Conference during the latest EU Heads of State/Government Summit in Brussels : http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/ficomigrationpolicymightpushbrexits.html), apparently with an Implicit Tolerance even from several Other Big EU Countries, finaly Had to Set up Internal EU Border Controls and even Closure in order to Start Stopping that Unprecedented 1,3 Million Massive Asylum Seekers/Irregular Migrants "Tsunami" comming through Turkey, as long as a New Government in Greece refused to Push Back the mainly Turkish Smugglers' Human Trafficking Ships (which have already provoked the Death of a Record-High Number of Refugees/Migrants by Drowning, particularly among the Poorest), at EU's External Borders in the Aegean Sea, while also using even Jet-Propulsed Tourist Luxury Big Ships, a well Organized Network of Busses and Trains in a Systematic Mass Public Transport (almost as Serbia also did by Rail, Croatia, etc), towards the Northern Borders of that Strategicaly Located EU and Shengen as well as €uroZone Member Country, (Comp. f.ex.: .....).


What is really at Stake, bypasses, indeed, even what EU Rapporteur Pebrics and the Text Adopted Today in Strasbourg by a Strong EU Parliament's Majority, with 483 Votes, against Only 181, have already Warned from the outset, (See f.ex. the 1st Article of the Official Proposal for an EU Directive), by Pointing out that its "Not Only" about "Monitoring Efficiently the Crossing of (EU's) External Borders, and multifacet "Migratory Challenges", but also about Various Other "Potential Future Threats at those borders", as well as in order to "Contribute to Address serious Crime with a cross-border Dimension, and to Ensure a High Level of Internal Security within the Union", while also "Safeguarding the Free Movement of persons therein". (I.e. obviously Including current "Terrorist threats", as the Recent Deadly Attacks by Extremist Islamic ISIL's atrocious HeHeaders even of Innocent and Defenseless Civilian People in Paris and Brussels, etc., proved, since Several among those Murderous Terrorists had, precisely, Arrived Hidden inside that Huge Refugees/Migrants' Infux through Turkey and via EU+Shenghen Member Greece, including 2 Turkish and Other origins' "Djihadists", 10 surviving Pals of whom, from Strasbourg's area, were just Condemned Today by a French Court to 6 or 8 Years in Jail, and a 2/3 Security Surveillance period, after their Trip and Active, Armed Stay in the Territories of Syria which remain still Occupied by ISIL's Terrorist Bands, despite the latest Advances by International Coalition Forces on the spot).

 

(../..)

 

 

 

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("DraftNews", as already send to "Eurofora"s Subscribers/Donors, earlier. A more accurate, full Final Version might be Published asap).

 

 

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Recent developments proved that Europe can suceed to overcome challenges by aiming at great objectives, and this is needed also in 2009, said EU chairman, French President Nicolas Sarkozy.

    - "It's in the name of Great Ideas, Projects, Ambition and Ideals, that EU can overcome" challenges, stressed Sarkozy at EU Parliament in Strasbourg, in conclusion of a dense 7 months EU Chairmanship. "It's even easier for Europe to have Great projects, able to overcome national egoism, instead of limiting itself only to small projects" (unable to do alike), he observed.     

- "Europe must remain Ambitious and understand that the World needs her to take Decisions". "The World needs a Strong Europe", which "thinks on its own, has convictions, its own responses, its imagination" : "A Europe which does not limit itself into following" others, (as it did in the Past, when it followed USA, f.ex. on Bosnia). On the contrary, "Europe should undertake its own responsibilities", he said, after a series of succes in stopping the War between Russia and Georgia, and organizing the 1st EuroZone's Summit in Paris, which incited the Washington DC G-20 Summit to extend similar decisions World-wide.  


    - "When you sweep it all under the carpet, prepare yourself for hard tomorrows", he warned. "What hinders decisions is the lack of Courage and Will, the fading away of Ideals", he stressed before EU Parliament's 2008 debate on Human Rights and Sakharov prize on Freedom of thought attributed by MEPs to Chinese cyber-dissident Hu Jia, followed by an EU - Turkey meeting on Friday.

    - "I don't abandon my convictions" and "I will take initiatives" on EU level also in 2009, Sarkozy announced later. "France will not stop having convictions and taking initiatives" on Europe. + "It's an Error to wish to pass over the Heads of those who are elected in their Countries" : "It's an integrism I always fought against"', he warned.
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French EU Presidency faced 4 unexpected Crisis :

- An institutional crisis, with the Irish "No" to EU Lisbon Treaty, just before it started. A geopolitical crisis, wth the threat of War between Russia and Georgia risking to throw Europe back to Cold-war divisions, on August. A World-wide Financial and Economic crisis, arriving at a bad moment before crucial 2009 EU elections. And even a Strasbourg's mini-crisis, with EU Parliament's roof curiously falling down, from unknown reasons, in a brand new building on August, provoking an unprecedented transfert of the 2 September Plenary Sessions...

But it wasn't enough to stop Sarkozy ! On the contrary, it stimulated him...
---------------------------------------

- "The better way to deal with the recent problems of EU institutions (as the "3 NO" by France, the Netherlands and Ireland) is to take them as a "Test" in order to find solutions closer to Citizens' concerns", said later in Strasbourg Sarkozy's new choice as Ministe for EU affairs, Bruno Le Maire.

- On the Institutional front, Sarkozy gave Time to the Irish to think about it, and stroke on December a deal including a New Referendum after the June 2009 EU Elections, in exchange of a promise to keep the rule of "one EU Commissioner for each EU Member Country", and some opt-outs on Defence and Fiscal EU policies, Abortion, etc. If the Irish get a "Yes" Majority, then the institutional package could be completed in 2010 or 2011 on the occasion of Croatia's probable EU accession.

He was accused in Strasbourg to upgrade EU Council and downgrade EU Commision, but he replied that "strong Political initiatives by EU Council reinforce also the more technical role of EU Commission, under the political-technical leadership of its President", all 3 "working together with EU Parliament".


- But, meanwhile, Sarkozy energetically spearheaded an Historic 1st Summit of EuroZone's 15 Heads of State and Government at EU's core, exceptionally enlarged to a partial participation of British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, on October 12 in Paris' Elysee palace, which started to tackle succesfully the growing world Financial crisis.

    It also paved the way for its endorsement by a subsequent Brussels' 27 EU Member States' gathering, before it all come to Washington's G-20 Summit. And "Europe was united, it asked for the 1st G-20 Summit, and it will also organise the next G-20 Summit on April in London", he observed.   

 But a Conference with EU, Russia, African and other Developing Countries, hosted in Strasbourg shortly after Washington G-20 Summit by the French EU Presidency, took a Resolution asking to enlarge participation to Global Economic Governance. Many found, indeed, illogic and unacceptable that f.ex. states as Turkey were given a seat at G-20 level, while all African Countries, and even the African Union itself, representing the greatest Continent on Earth, were excluded...


    Meanwhile, even USA''s "Paulson No 3" Plan, was, in fact, inspired by Europe's No 1 Plan", Sarkozy observed, largelly applauded by MEPs.

    And "Europe showed Solidarity" by mobilizing some 22 Billion credit for Hungary, 1,7 billion for Ukraine, as we do nowadays for Baltic States, etc., he added.

    The move on Economy was extended on December by an EU stimulus' plan totalling some 200 billion Euros, including 5 Billions released by EU Commission for big Projects, as well as various parallel National plans for Economic revival, (fex. 26 billions in France alone). They might appear limited, compared to USA President-elect Obama's reported plan to boost the American economy with 800 billion $, but at least succeded to overcome Europe's divisions for the first time on Economic governance, opening new horizons.

- The French President stressed even harder the unique role of an active EU Council's chairmanship, when he moved swiftly and efficiently, at the beginning of August, to succesfully stop War between Russia and Georgia, at the last minute, which threatened to bring Europe back to Cold War division.

"We (EU) also wanted to avoid a situation like in Bosnia, in the Past, when EU was absent, so that our American friends took their responsibilitues, and EU only followed", despite the fact that the conflict took place in Europe. Now, it was the EU who took its responsibilities".

A roadmap towards a new PanEuropean Security policy, before which all unilateral moves to place new Missiles (from USA or Russia) would be freezed, was proposed by Sarkozy after a meeting with Russian president Medvedev, at the eve of Washington DC's G-20 Summit.

Ukraine's "European" character was stressed at a Sarkozy - Jushenko Summit, September in Paris, while EU adopted on December an "Eastern policy", in which, "I'm convinced that our (EU's) future is to find with our Neighbours the conditions for Economic Development. Peace and Security, by explaining them that.. they must respect (Human Rights') Values, and adopt behaviors different from the Past", explained Sarkozy in Strasbourg.

Meanwhile, the "Union for the Mediterranean" was created, since July's Summit if 45 Heads of State and Government in Paris, as "an organisation for a permanent Dialogue, that we need", mainly in order to tackle the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, by bringing together, for the 1st time, Israelis and Arabs, where "Europe must be present, in order to avoid a frontal clash".

- "If Europe doesn't take its part for Peace in the Middle-East, nobody else will do that in our place", Sarkozy stressed.
-----------------------
    Meanwhile, other EU Agreements were brokered during the French EU Presidency on Immigration, (fex. common Asylum rules, etc), and Climat- Energy :

    - On Climat-Energy, the 2007 German EU Presidency had fixed a triple 20% aim for 2020 (20% renewable Energies, 20% reduction of CO2 emmission, 20% energy efficience/economies), and the 2008 French EU Presidecny realized that, making the necessary compromises in order to modernize EU's industry, but without throwing some former Central-Eastern European Countries into abrupt Economic break down risking "social explosion".

    - Defence-Security EU policy was mainly postponed for April 2009, since both German chancellor Merkel and French president Sarkozy want to strike a deal with the new American president Obama in Strasbourg's NATO Summit.

    However, with all these 4 unexpected Crisis diverting attention to other urgencies, People wil wonder now, what happened to the famous deal proposed by freshly-elected French President Sarkozy on Turkey's controversial EU bid, back on August 2007, to continue EU - Turkey negotiations, but on the double condition that core chapters, intrinsequally linked with EU Membership, will be excluded, and that a collective Reflexion and Debate on Europe's future would start before the end of 2008.

    It was meant to reply to the crucial question : What kind of Europe do we want in 10 or 20 Years from now : A large Market, or a Political Europe, with a popular identity ? In Sarkozy's thinking, presented in his 2 landmark speeches on Europe in Strasbourg, shortly before and after the 2007 Elections, (on February and July 2007), Turkey's controversial EU bid would be incompatible with the second choice.

    It's true that EU Commision's Chairman, Jose Barroso, (who had notoriously declared, as former Portuguese Prime Minister, that he found "nonsense" the idea that Europe might become equal to the US), had repeatedly tried to avoid that Sarkozy's criticism on Turkey might start winning a larger audience in Europe, preferring a discrete "wismens' committee" work. And that most of the personalities later chosen in order to participate in a Committee on Europe's Future, are too much linked with Socialist parties and/or American policies, to be really critical of USA's notorious wish to impose Turkey to the EU, as Sarkozy had noted himself since March 2007..

     - "It's on EU Council's presidency to take political initiatives. EU Commission has other competences", stressed Sarkozy. The "European Ideal" is to "build Europe with the States, not against them". "Ask Europeans to chose between their countries and Europe won't work. You don't choose between your two parents : We must add them together".

    "France and Germany have an Historic Duty to work together, precisely because of what happened to the Past. We have to work hand by hand. We cannot be separated.It goes beyond me and Mrs Merkel today, Mr Schroeder and Mr. Chirac yesterday. It's not a choice, it's a duty to Europe and to the World".  "We need Germany, as Germany needs Europe". Compromise is inevitable, here as everywhere, and each one made some steps towards eachother's positions.

    But "it's true that Mrs Merkel didn't chose her Socialist partners, while I chose mine", Sarkozy said, in an indirect hint that the Socialist Minister of Finance in Germany might be a cause of minor past disagreements in Economy, which were overcome in recent negotiations.

    "We (France and Germany) have particular duties in Europe", but "in a Europe of 27 Member States, it's not enough for France and Germany to agree between them.

    "I always thought that Great Britain has a special role to play in Europe. ... Now, everybody "saw what it cost payed the UK for having been too exclusively open towards the US (and) Financial services. Europe needs the UK, but also the UK needs Europe" :- "We were able to face the hardest moment of the Financial crisis because the UK clearly chose Europe", stressed Sarkozy, reminding Gordon Brown's exceptional participation to the Historic 1st Heads of State/Government Summit of EuroZone, October 12 in Paris (See EuroFora's Reportage from Elysee Palace then).

     - "Some look at Europe with old glasses aged 30 years ago. While we must look at her in relation to what it will be in 30 years" in the Future, Sarkozy concluded.

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