Justice and Home Affairs Council:
Extracts from the press conference by Alan SHATTER, Irish Minister for Justice, Equality and Defence; and Viviane REDING, Vice-President of the EC in charge of Justice, Fundamental Rights and Citizenship
Première transmission: 06/06/2013
Luxembourg (town), Luxembourg - Council
Fin de production: 06/06/2013
Today, justice ministers have had and in-depth discussion on certain key issues regarding the proposal for a regulation on the protection of individuals with regard to the processing of personal data and on the free movement of such data (General Data Protection Regulation). The Council was expected to agree a general approach on the draft directive on the fight against fraud to the Union's financial interests by means of criminal law. Furthermore, ministers held a public debate on the proposal for a regulation creating a European Account Preservation Order and on the proposal for a regulation on insolvency proceedings the objective of which is to establish a number of guidelines for the continuation of the work. Ministers have heard a presentation by the Commission on its proposal for a regulation on promoting the free movement of citizens and businesses by simplifying the acceptance of certain public documents in the EU. The Council was expected to adopt conclusions on fundamental rights and rule of law and on the Commission 2012 Report on the Application of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the EU and has been briefed by the Presidency on the state of play on the EU's accession to the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms (ECHR). Finally, the Council was due to adopt the new EU Action Plan on Drugs (2013-2016), followed by a presentation by the Director of the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction of the 2013 European Drug Report.
Only the original language version is authentic and it prevails in the event of its differing from the translated versions.
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||SOUNDBITE by Alan Shatter, Irish Minister for Justice, Equality and Defence and president in office of the Council (In English) saying that: On data protection, as you know this was one of our priority for the presidency. We have managed to bring this regulation along both further and faster that many people may have thought possible. In the context of today's discussion, we were particularly focusing on chapters 1 to 4 of the regulation; there was a general acknowledgment that very substantial progress had been made on a broad range of issues and important developments with regards to the regulation.
||SOUNDBITE by Alan Shatter (In English) saying that: It will provide additional protections for people's privacy. The one thing that everyone agreed upon is that this regulation will enhance the protections available and the privacy available to individuals in the context of the manner in which they can deal with issues and in the context of dealing with consent issues and will provide a more uniform framework to the benefit of business across the EU.
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||SOUNDBITE by Alan Shatter (In English) saying that: Agreement has been reached on key principles of the European account preservation order; a measure which will help businesses recover money owing to EU states. The key issue here is to strike the right balance between the rights of debtors and creditors; I believe that is what we have done and there was a consensus to move forward with that particular measure.
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||SOUNDBITE by Viviane Reding, Vice-President of the EC in charge of Justice, Fundamental Rights and Citizenship (In English) saying that: It is a great day where we have put fundamental rights in practise and not only in discussion because the access to a lawyer is one in a whole package of fundamental rights for the people accused in front of a criminal court which was necessary to put in place because before the Treaty of Lisbon we had the security bond question which has been solved like the European arrest warrant.
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||SOUNDBITE by Viviane Reding (In English) saying that: We have to have the measures in our society for security but we also have to have the measures for the rights of the individuals and you might recall that we did not only look at the rights of the people who were accused of doing something wrong but also the rights of the people against whom something has been done wrong, that means the victims and the whole victim package has been agreed so the progress since the Treaty of Lisbon in only 3 years on the level of rights has been extraordinary.
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||SOUNDBITE by Viviane Reding (In English) saying that: We think that it is our responsibility as political leaders to get these rights in place and that is what we have done under this presidency, it is an enormous step forward but it is not only an enormous step forward for the right of the individual, the right which is inscribed in the chart of fundamental rights and in the treaty; every human being in Europe has a right to his or her personal data.
||Alan Shatter and Viviane Reding leaving the press room