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Home arrow newsitems arrow EU IT Agency CEO Garkov to EF: Data Protect+Fight Terror =Schengen/VISA/Asylum/Interoperability Boom

EU IT Agency CEO Garkov to EF: Data Protect+Fight Terror =Schengen/VISA/Asylum/Interoperability Boom

Parašė ACM
Thursday, February 08, 2018
eu_schengen_administration_ceo_to_agg_eurofora_400

*Strasbourg/EU Parliament/Angelo Marcopolo/- It's at the Topical and "Hot" Crossroads between Personal/Private Data Protection and Crime/Terrorism Prevention needs, Both Growing Nowadays, concerning EU's Large-scale Information systems' Agency "EU-LISA", which manages Schengen's EU Citizens' Free Movement, Visas and Asylum seeking's IT systems, recently (2017) entrusted also with the InterOperability of EU's Networks, that its CEO, Krum Garkov, speaking to "Eurofora", after a Hearing by EU Parliament's Committee on Terrorism, chaired by French MEP Nathalie Griesbeck, highlighted some main key points in reply to our relevant questions, (including on EU-LISAgency's Next Phase of Expansion in Strasbourg) :

 eu_parliaments_counterterrorism_commission_eurofora_400

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In fact, Grakov (a UK/USA Educated IT Management Expert from Bulgaria, the incoming rotating EU Presidency for January - June 2018), has Both to Protect Data and to Facilitate Information Networks on EU Citizens' Free Movement and Security area, VISAs and Asylum Seekers' administration, as well as Inter-Operability of EU Networks  by "EU-LISA", created on 2012, whose Operational Activities are Headquartered in Strasbourg, (France), its Secretariat being hosted in Tallin (Estonia).

 

 

eus_lisagency_logo_eu_site__eurofora_400

 


Data Protection and EU Information Sharing currently Growing both in parallel, EU-LISAgency's activities and responsibilities, naturally, are recently also Growing fast, needing a Wider Space and more Means, as MEPs observed Today.


- But, will EU's Large Information Systems' Agency (EU-LISA) really meet the Challenge of both Protecting Personal/Private Data, as well as Helping Crime/Terrorism Prevention by adequate Information-Sharing, and how ?, "Eurofora" mainly asked EU's IT CEO Garkov.  

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DATA PROTECTION
---------------------------------------------

 - Questioned in particular, on the Entry into Force of EU's New Directive on Data Protection and how to cope with necessary Changes, Garkov calmly estimated that, -"Well, there woN't be such a Dramatic Impact".


 - "Of course, we (EU-LISAgency) have to Align our Internal arrangementts, related to the (Information) Systems, according to the New (EU Directive's) Requirements", he acknowledged, as a matter of Principle.


- "But", in Fact, "the New Requirements are not so Dramatically Different from what we Already have in place", ensured the Experienced EU-LISA's Chief, who is in charge since its inception and beginning, from 2012-2013, (Comp. relevant Garkov Statements to "Eurofora", already on this Historic Event's occasion, then, at : ...).


- F.ex., concerning "Scrutiny" on EU's IT Agency, we recently had "a Mission" about that, and, "So Far, there is Not something Critical that was found ... that might make Anyone Doubtful about the arrangements in the Agency", he observed, in this regard.


=> "So, there Will be New Requirements, but I'm quite Sure that we shall Successfully Cope with them", EU-LISA's Head promised, optimistically and/or with voluntarism.  

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+ FIGHT AGAINST TERRORISM
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+ On Topical and "Hot" Crime/Terrorism Prevention issues, "Eurofora" asked Garkov how could EU Avoid, in Future, the Gross Blunder (and/or Lacuna) which had allowed for a Persistent Offender, an Afghan irregular Migrant 32 Years old (as his own Father revealed Later-on), who had Already been Convicted and Jailed in Greece (where he had arrived through Turkey, amidst that Unprecedented "Tsunami" of +1,5 Millions Mass Asylum Seekers/Irregular Migrants of 2015-2016) for Brutally Aggressing and throwing over an 8 Meter High Building a Young Girl who survived but was Seriously Wounded after Resisting to his Sexual Assault, to Come, afterwards, in Germany, where he Fooled the Authorities by Claiming to be a Young "Teenager" and a "Refugee",  so that they Gave him a Protected Status, a Foster Family as "UnAccompagnied Child" (sic !), regular Money and Training, until he Brutally Raped and Murdered anOther Young Girl, at Nearby Freiburg, on 2017, who was even Helping Refugees as Volunteer, and whose Father was working at EU Commission in Brussels : German Authorities reportedly did Not Know Anything about that recent Past of that Coward Monster, because of an ill-elucidated yet, Scandalous Flaw in the Information System of Police Cooperation on Criminal matters concering irregular Migrants from 3rd (Non-EU) Countries : The Famous Maria Ladenburger affair, which Recently arrived at the Courts.


-  "Here comes the role of ECRIS-TCN" (the "European Criminal Records Information System" on "Third-Country Nationals"), which is a relatively New System on Criminal Records' exchanges for 3rd Countries (Non-EU) Nationals, recently proposed by the EU Commission, and is Now at the Table" (of EU Council + Parliament), Garko punctually replied to "Eurofora"s above-mentioned Question in EU Parliament - (by a Coincidence, just before Meeting, Later Today, at EU-LISAgency's Headquarters in Strasbourg, with EU's Rapporteur for the Budgetary aspects of ECRIS-TCN, MEP Bernd Kolmel).


- "We (EU-LISAgendy) Shall have to Develop that. We shall do", he confirmed, after a relevant EU Commissions' official announcement, since June 2017.


+ "Mainly, it will provide (EU) Member States with the Information if a particular Individual, National of a 3rd Country, has Previous Convictions, and in what (EU) Member State", Garkov explained.


=> "So, the relevant Authorities, f.ex. in Germany, will be Able to Approach the Authorities, f.ex. in Greece, and Ask for Details :" I.e. "What was the Conviction ?", etc., etc. So that will be Known. This is Coming" asap, he announced.


 - In order to Facilitate things in real Practice, "it will be as Automatic as possible", and, at any case, it will be treated as a "Part of the (EU's) Inter-Operability package" of Measures, which EU Commission proposed recently to entrust to EU-LISAgency, its CEO concluded in reply.


--------------------


- In the Past, indeed, "the System had some Gaps", he acknowledged earlier.


- Particularly "on Identity Fraud", which was "the Most Important" Problem, where a series of "New Technologies Will be <<Game-Changers>>, in the Fight against Crime and Terrorism !", he Optimistically announced, speaking also at EU Parliament's Commission on Terrorism, previously this Morning.

 

eu_lisagency_ceo_garkov_speaking_at_eu_parliaments_counterterrorism_committee_eurofora_400


- "F.ex.", that Islamist Terrorist who Killed many innocent Civilian People "in Germany, at Berlin's Christmas Market", (and refuged at a Turkish Mosque that he used to Visit, nearby), had ... "Forteen (14 !) Different Identities", all "Fake !", he denounced.


+ This was Added to MEP's Questions also on the case of the suspected "Ring-Leader" of the Deadly "2015 Mass-Attacks in Paris", who had, reportedly, "Travelled several Times, from/to Syria", (arriving through Turkey, into EU Member Greece : I.e. crossing again and again EU's External Borders), as it was also pointed out.


- But, Nowadays, "Modern Technology can Contribute to the Fight against Terrorism", (that "95% of EU Citizens cinsider as a Considerable Challenge"), which is mainy "Information-Driven !", Garko stressed, before Describing some More concrete "New Tools", in this regard, (See also Infra).


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 => So that, putting it in a nutshell, he underlined the Fact that, "Today, EU faces the Challenge" of the Need "to be Both Open and Safe !"



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EU-LISAgency's GROWTH
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+ Questioned by "Eurofora" about the forseable Evolution of EU-LISA's Operational Headquarters, here, its CEO confirmed and Highlighted the Importance of the ForthComing Growth of the Agency, but appeared Confident that it will Find, on Time, the required Means :

=>  - In fact, at "the Operational Site here", in Strasbourg, "the Capacity is Not Enough for Everything that is Coming", Garkov admitted, just after telling us also about the New "Inter-Operability package" due to be entrusted to EU-LISAgency, as we've seen above, (Comp. also Infra)


 - So that, "Now, we are Finalizing a ReConstruction Site", he pointed out, as far as it concerns mainly current affairs.


- "But, Immediately, we shall have to Move to a Next Phase of Expansion, in order to Cope with the New Tasks of the Agency".


- This will also "be Here, in Strasbourg", in France, where EU-LISAgency's CEO looks confident that he shall find what is needed, including also the Fact that "we have a Good Cooperation with the Municipality", with "Support from the Mayor of Strasbourg", and "we have all the prerequisivities to go in the (new) site" as required, he told "Eurofora".


------------


- Earlier, Garkov had observed, indeed, that, just for the "Schengen system", Internet "Searches", which, already were More than "4 Billions" on "2016", had Grown "during 2017" for "+ 25%". And, "the Data Shared" until the "End of 2017", grew up to "+35% More" than before, (etc).


+ In Addition, as he had just noted in his speech at EU Parliament's Commission against Terrorism, earlier this (Thursday) Morning, "for EURO-DAC" (the Asylum Seekers-related EU Information System), "since 2017, All Europe is InterConnected".

 

eulisagency_ceo_garkov_in_ep_antiterror_ctee_eurofora_400 


- And, "from March" 2018, "we shall have also the Bio-Metric Data", with "Important", "Efficiency" and "Sophisticated Tools" for EU's "Coast-Guards", etc.


=> So that, in Total, there are Emerging several "New (EU) Capabilities" : F.ex., "on Alpha-Numeric Data, Bio-Metric Data, New EURODAC Regulation, Inter-Operability", etc., EU-LISAgency's Head resumed in fine.

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PRESIDENT NATHALIE GRIESBECK
------------------------------------------------------------

Garkov's Hearing Today had been organized by the President of EU Parliament's Commission on Terrorism, French Liberal MEP Nathalie Griesbeck, from Nearby Lorraine area of Strasbourg's new "Great East" Region.

 

president_of_eu_parliaments_committee_on_terrorism_mep_nathalie_griesbeck__agg_eurofora_400


- President Griesbeck, greeting afterwards, with a smile, "Eurofora", (while rushing for the imminent Plenary's Votes at the Hemicycle), told us that she intends yet to Carefully Prepare all the concrete Issues which may be Discussed at some Long and Important Next Sessions, more than a Month Later in Brussels : On 21-22 March 2018, (eve of EU's Heads of State/Government Summit of 22-23 March, there).


- At any case, our Committee is, in general, entrusted with a Wide Mission :  To Examine both eventual Flaws and Problems, as well as Best Practices and possible Needs and/or Proposals in order to Ameliorate the Efficiency of EU's Fight against Terrorism, as she reminded earlier Today.

 

 ep_terror_ctee_pres_griesbeck_eurofora_400

 

Significantly, Griesbeck had Started EU Parliament's Anti-Terrorism Committee's Hearings in Strasbourg, at the Beginning of this (Thursday) Morning, by a Joint Exchange of views with MEPs by Germany's and France's Top Police Officers :


- Jurgen Ebner, of the German Federal Criminal Police Office (BKA), Head of the Central Information Management's Department, and Jean-Jacques Colombi, from the French National Police's Judicial Directorate, Head of International Relations' division.

Unfortunately, that Interesting, Cross-fire Hearing, concerning the 2 Biggest EU Countries, (which obviously prepared also the subsequent, EU-LISAgency's CEO Krum Garkov's Hearing), was inevitably placed "In Camera", (i.e. behind Closed Doors for Journalists, including "Eurofora", who had to Wait discussing between collegues at EU Parliament's adjacent corridors), so that the Informations exchanged on that important occasion with MEPs, (which as we Witnessed, durated Longer than Scheduled), remain Confidential.

 

eu_parliament_on_its_counterterrorism_committee_meeting_eurofora_400

 

(../..)

 

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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.
----------------------------------
    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.
-------------
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".

----------------------------------

Each MEP's vote will be registered !

-----------------------------------   

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...
 

      ***     
 
     (Draft due to be updated).
 
***

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