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Justice, Fundamental Rights and Citizenship

One year in office as the first EU Justice Commissioner: "We are taking a quantum leap in building the European Justice Area."

Viviane Reding © EC

Vice-President Viviane Reding marks one year in office as the EU’s first Justice Commissioner, protecting citizens’ rights and creating a single area of justice. Thanks to determined EU action, citizens now have the right to an interpreter and translated documents if they are suspects in criminal proceedings. Citizens will also be given a “letter of rights” – in their own language and drafted in understandable terms. The Commission is making it easier for citizens to take advantage of their right to move, travel and study abroad. For the first time in EU history, Justice Commissioner Reding used the enhanced cooperation procedure to deliver real results to citizens: international couples can now select which country's law would apply to their divorce. Viviane Reding is standing up for fundamental rights. When it became known that France took measures specifically targeted at the Roma, she ensured that France and other EU Member States change their free-movement legislation to grant procedural rights in case of expulsions.