|1. The Union shall develop a common policy on asylum and temporary protection with a view to offering appropriate status to any third-country national requiring international protection and ensuring compliance with the principle of non-refoulement. This policy shall be in accordance with the Geneva Convention of 28 July 1951 and the Protocol of 31 January 1967 relating to the status of refugees and other relevant treaties.|
2. For this purpose, the European Parliament and the Council, in accordance with the legislative procedure, shall adopt laws or framework laws to establish a common European asylum system comprising:
-- a uniform status of asylum for nationals of third countries, valid throughout the Union;
-- a uniform status of subsidiary protection for nationals of third countries who, without obtaining European asylum, are in need of international protection;
-- a uniform status of temporary protection for displaced persons in the event of a massive inflow;
-- a common procedure for granting and withdrawing asylum status or subsidiary or temporary protection status;
-- criteria and mechanisms for determining which Member State is responsible for considering an application for asylum or subsidiary protection;
-- standards concerning the reception of applicants for asylum or subsidiary or temporary protection.
3. In the event of one or more Member States being confronted by an emergency situation characterised by a sudden inflow of nationals of third countries, the Council, by a qualified majority, may adopt regulations or decisions comprising provisional measures for the benefit of the Member State(s) concerned. It shall act on a proposal from the Commission after consulting the European Parliament.
"The draft article is based on the Working Group's recommendations on page 4 of the final report:
.. "That qualified majority voting and codecision be made applicable in the Treaty for legislation on asylum, refugees and displaced persons; - That Article 63(1) and (2) TEC be redrafted in order to create a general legal base enabling the adoption of the measures needed to put in place a common asylum system and a common policy on refugees and displaced persons as set out in Tampere. This legal base should, as in the present Treaty, ensure full respect of the Geneva Convention but enable the Union also to provide further complementary forms of protection not embraced by that Convention".
Paragraph 3 reproduces current Article 64(2) TEC; the temporary measures that may be adopted are not exclusively confined to the area of asylum law.
"Nationals of third countries" must be understood to include stateless persons."
38. Article 11 goes a step further than the current
Treaty by expressly aiming to establish a 'European asylum system'
with uniform standards and common procedures. In so doing it reflects
political decisions already taken. At the Tampere European Council,
Member States decided that a common European asylum system was
to be established by a two-stage process. Member States have agreed
on a number of matters establishing minimum standards to be addressed
in the short (first) term. In the long (second) term a truly common
asylum procedure and a unified status for refugees, valid throughout
the Union, would be established.
39. The first stage requires the adoption of
a number of key measures, including a Directive on minimum standards
in asylum procedures for granting and withdrawing refugee status
(the Procedures Directivestill
under negotiation), a Directive on minimum standards for reception
of asylum seekers
a Regulation (replacing the Dublin Convention) on criteria and
mechanisms for determining the State responsible for examining
a Directive on qualification and content of refugee status and
on subsidiary forms of protection
(still under negotiation).
40. The references in Article 11(2) to "subsidiary
protection" are especially welcome. In our Reports on
the Procedures Directive and the Reception Standards Directive
we drew attention to the absence of provision for those claiming
such protection status. The draft Directive on qualification and
content of refugee status and on subsidiary forms of protection
is the only measure in the current asylum package to address the
position of those seeking such protection. Union action in this
area should take account of all bases for international protection
and any common asylum policy should ensure high standards (particularly
in relation to procedures and reception conditions) and consistency
in application across the Union.
41. The last paragraph of the Praesidium's Explanatory
note on this Article states: ""Nationals of third countries"
must be understood to include stateless persons". We agree.
The text of Article 11 should be amended accordingly.
1. The Union shall develop a common immigration policy aimed at ensuring, at all stages, the efficient management of migration flows, fair treatment of third-country nationals residing legally in Member States, and the prevention of, and enhanced measures to combat, illegal immigration and trafficking in human beings.
2. To this end, the European Parliament and the Council, in accordance with the legislative procedure, shall adopt laws and framework laws in the following areas:
-- conditions of entry and residence, and standards on the issue by Member States of long term visas and residence permits, including those for the purpose of family reunion;
-- definition of the rights of third-country nationals residing legally in a Member State, including the conditions governing the freedom of movement and of residence in other Member States;
-- illegal immigration and unauthorised residence, including removal and repatriation of persons residing without authorisation;
-- combating trafficking in persons, in particular women and children.
3. The Union may conclude readmission agreements with third countries for the readmission of third-country nationals residing without authorisation to their countries of origin or provenance.
4. The European Parliament and the Council, in accordance with the legislative procedure, may adopt laws and framework laws providing incentive and support for the action of Member States with a view to promoting the integration of third-country nationals residing legally in their territories.
"This draft article is based largely on Article 63(3) and (4) TEC, but applies qualified majority voting and the legislative procedure (codecision), as recommended by the Working Group (see page 5 of the report). Paragraph 4 adds a legal base, as recommended by the Working Group (see page 5 of the report:
"that a legal base should be provided to allow the Union to take incentive and support measures to assist Member States' efforts to promote the integration of legally resident third-country nationals").
In addition, in paragraph 2, second indent, a slightly different wording has been proposed. It is more in line with the objective set at Tampere of legislating on the legal status held by legally resident third country nationals in their country of residence and in other Member States (on this point, see also page 5 of the Working Group's final report). Lastly, explicit references have been added to combating trafficking in persons and to readmission agreements, in order to highlight the importance place of these two aspects (which are covered by the existing Treaty) in the Union's existing policy.
The definition of this sector as one of shared competence (see Article 12 of draft Part One submitted by the Praesidium) means that Member States may maintain national provisions or introduce new ones in this sector, providing that they are compatible with Union law, without it being necessary to repeat the principle (which is currently set out at the end of Article 63 TEC)."
42. Article 12 is a considerably expanded version
of Articles 63(3) and (4) TEC. Paragraph 1, which refers to the
objectives of the EU immigration policy, mentions for the first
time the 'efficient management of migration flows'a concept
which has been used by the Commission in its work on migration
and recently in the conclusions of the Seville European Council.
Managing migration flows is to be accompanied by fair treatment
of legally resident third country nationals and action to prevent
and combat, by 'enhanced measures', illegal immigration and trafficking
in human beings.
43. EU competence regarding legally resident
third country nationals (TCNs) is considerably extended.
Article 12 is not limited to defining their right of residence.
Paragraph 1 refers to the general objective of 'fair treatment
of TCNs', while paragraph 2 envisages the adoption of EU legislation
defining the rights of legally resident TCNs including (but not
limited to) 'the conditions governing the freedom of movement
and of residence in other Member States'. A further and important
innovation is the inclusion of Article 12(4), which gives the
EU a competence for 'supporting action' with the view of promoting
the integration of legally resident TCNs.
44. Changes are also proposed to the Treaty language
on illegal immigration. Article 12(1) refers for the first time
to its 'prevention', while there is also a reference to 'enhanced
measures' to combat illegal immigration and trafficking in human
beings. It is not clear what the meaning of 'enhanced measures'
is, and whether it signifies a shift to stricter control measures
in the field. Article 12(2) also refers to illegal immigration
and unauthorised residence, which is deemed to include 'removal
and repatriation of persons residing without authorisation'. This
appears to be inspired by the prioritisation of expulsion policies
decided at the Seville European Council, coupled with pressure
towards the conclusion of readmission agreements between the EU
and third countries.
In this respect, Article 12(3) provides a broad legal basis for
the conclusion of such agreements enabling the readmission of
TCNs residing without authorisation to their countries of origin
45. In our Reports and day-to-day scrutiny we
have repeatedly emphasised the need for a 'common' EU approach
to immigration. It remains to be seen whether Article 12 will
provide a basis for a balanced EU approach to immigration which
this Committee has consistently advocated,
combining the opening up of avenues of legal migration with the
effective control of illegal immigration. The reference to more
'inclusive' measures on legally resident TCNs is a welcome step
in this direction. A further impetus towards the enhancement of
EU action in the field, in particular as regards more 'inclusive'
measures, will be provided by the shift from unanimity and consultation
to qualified majority voting and co-decision ('the legislative
procedure') provided for by Article 12(2). This is a positive
step to avoid legislative paralysis in an EU of 25, but will be
controversial in view of Member States' reluctance to relinquish
power in sensitive matters such as the treatment of TCNs.
46. On the other hand, Article 12 contains no
specific references to positive policies to encourage lawful routes
for the admission of migrants currently outside the Union. Further,
the broad wording relating to illegal immigration ('enhanced measures')
and the specific reference in the Article to removal and repatriation
may lead to a greater emphasis on stricter control measures.
Article 13:Principle of solidarity
|The policies of the Union set out in this Chapter and their implementation shall be governed by the principle of solidarity and fair sharing of responsibility (including its financial implications) between the Member States. Whenever necessary, the acts of the Union adopted pursuant to the provisions of this Chapter shall contain appropriate measures to give effect to this principle.
"Draft article based on the recommendation on page 4 (third indent) of the Working Group's final report.
While acknowledging the responsibilities of the Member States, to enshrine in the Treaty the principle of solidarity and fair sharing of responsibility (including its financial implications) between the Member States, applying as a general principle to the Union's asylum, immigration and border control policies. A specific legal basis should enable the adoption of the detailed policies necessary to give effect to this principle.""
47. Article 13 fleshes out the reference to solidarity
in Article 1, where it is considered, along with the fair treatment
of legally resident third county nationals, as one of the bases
of a common policy on asylum, immigration and border controls.
The need for solidarity and the fair sharing of responsibility
between Member States has been raised in the context of the negotiations
of the 'Dublin II' Regulation
as well as, and perhaps most prominently, in the context of the
debate over the need to have an integrated EU management of external
The explicit reference to the 'financial implications' of solidarity
is noteworthy, though it is not clear what it will entail in practice.
Chapter 2: Judicial cooperation in civil
Article 14:[Judicial cooperation
in civil matters]
1. The Union shall develop judicial cooperation in civil matters based on the principle of mutual recognition of judgments and decisions in extrajudicial cases. Such cooperation shall include the adoption of measures for the approximation of national laws having cross-border implications.
2. To this end, the European Parliament and the Council, in accordance with the legislative procedure, shall adopt laws and framework laws aiming inter alia to ensure:
-- the mutual recognition and enforcement between Member States of judgments and decisions in extrajudicial cases;
-- the cross border service of judicial and extrajudicial documents;
-- the compatibility of the rules applicable in the Member States concerning the conflict of laws and of jurisdiction;
-- cooperation in the taking of evidence;
-- a high level of access to justice;
-- the good functioning of civil proceedings, if necessary by promoting the compatibility of the rules on civil procedure applicable in the Member States;
-- the development of measures of preventive justice and alternative methods of dispute settlement;
-- support for the training of the judiciary and judicial staff.
3. The Council, on a proposal from the Commission, shall unanimously adopt laws and framework laws concerning family law; it shall act after consulting the European Parliament. The European Parliament and the Council, in accordance with the legislative procedure, shall adopt laws and framework laws concerning parental responsibility.
"This provision is based on Article 65 TEC. The only amendments to Article 65 TEC which emerged from the Working Group's final report are the following:
-- enshrining of the principle of mutual recognition of judgments and decisions in extrajudicial cases (end of page 6 of the report);
-- development of measures of preventive justice and alternative methods of dispute settlement;
-- training of the judiciary and judicial staff;
-- the codecision procedure for measures concerning parental authority, which would be the only sector of family law in which unanimity would not apply (see pages 6 and 7 of the report).
The Praesidium felt that there was no longer any justification for keeping the current reference to "the proper functioning of the internal market" (Article 65 TEC) in the new provision. The phrase is included in existing Article 65 TEC partly because this provision is an element of Community policies and is linked to the free movement of persons in the context of the internal market.
Once the new Treaty contains a separate title on the area of freedom, security and justice, the reference to "the proper functioning of the internal market" can be considered redundant. Moreover, the most important aspect to be to emphasised in this context is that the envisaged measures under judicial cooperation in civil matters have a "cross-border impact", reference to which is included in the proposed provision.
Finally, in line with the Tampere conclusions, it seemed important to add the explicit statement that the Union must also take measures aimed at ensuring a high level of access to justice. This could have consequences for the future establishment of minimum standards guaranteeing an appropriate level of legal aid for cross-border cases throughout the Union, and special common procedural rules in order to simplify and speed up the settlement of cross-border disputes concerning small commercial claims under consumer legislation or to establish minimum common standards for multilingual forms or documents in cross-border proceedings."
48. Article 14 largely replicates Article 65
TEC. The changes are listed in the Praesidium's Explanatory note
printed above. It is noteworthy that the current limitation in
Article 65 TEC (that measures can be taken only "in so far
as necessary for the proper functioning of the internal market")
has been replaced by a "cross-border implications" test.
The "internal market" criterion has sometimes seemed
rather artificial and strained, for example, in the context of
measures relating to the recognition and enforcement of judgments
in matrimonial matters and to matters of parental responsibility.
The new test is preferable, being more apposite to closer cooperation
in non-economic matters. What is important is that there should
be a genuine and proven need for action at the European level
and that in future the Commission will take full account of the
need to respect different legal systems, and their values and
traditions (as envisaged by Article 1 above).
49. The opportunity should also be taken to clarify
the meaning of "extrajudicial cases" and "extrajudicial
documents". Further, we note that the eighth indent of paragraph
2 of this Article refers to "support" for the training
of judges, while the third indent of Article 15(2) (criminal matters)
refers to encouraging judicial training. What is the significance
of the different wording? Does "support" imply making
Chapter 3: Judicial cooperation in criminal
Article 15:[Judicial cooperation
in criminal matters]
|1. Judicial cooperation in criminal matters in the Union shall be based on the principle of mutual recognition of judicial decisions and shall include the approximation of legislation in the areas referred to in Articles  and .|
2. The European Parliament and the Council, in accordance with the legislative procedure, shall adopt laws and framework laws to:
-- establish rules and procedures for ensuring the recognition throughout the Union of all forms of judgments and judicial decisions;
-- prevent and settle conflicts of jurisdiction between Member States;
-- encourage the training of the judiciary and judicial staff;
-- facilitate all other forms of cooperation between ministries and judicial or equivalent authorities of the Member States in relation to proceedings in criminal matters and the enforcement of decisions.
"The first paragraph of this draft article is based on one of the Working Group's core recommendations:
see page 8: "
the new formulation of these legal bases must reflect the right balance between the principle of mutual recognition and efforts to approximate criminal laws: as it was politically agreed in Tampere, the principle of mutual recognition should be the cornerstone of judicial cooperation, allowing judicial decisions of one Member States to be recognised by the authorities of another Member State. The Group recommends that this principle of mutual recognition of judicial decisions should be formally enshrined in the Treaty. The Group also recognises that some approximation of certain elements of criminal procedure and of specific areas of substantive criminal law, respecting the different European legal traditions - as well as the provisions of the ECHR as reflected in the Charter in particular concerning the presumption of innocence -, may prove necessary in order to facilitate mutual recognition.".
The second and fourth indents of paragraph 2 are based on existing Article 31(1)(a) and (d) TEU.
The first indent includes a recommendation made by the Working Group (see page 12 of the final report:
"In the field of judicial cooperation, the Group recommends however that the legal basis be complemented so as to enable adoption of the necessary measures for the mutual recognition of judicial orders, fines, disqualification decisions, and all other forms of judicial decisions; this would be a logical consequence of enshrining the principle of mutual recognition in the Treaty.".
By way of clarification, the third indent incorporates an explicit legal basis for the training of judges and judicial staff, which was mentioned on page 11 of the Group's report."
50. Article 15(1) restates the principle of mutual
recognition of judicial decisions, now set down in Article 31
(see above), as one of the ways in which the Union shall ensure
an area of freedom, security and justice. Article 15(2) provides
a legal basis for the adoption of measures on judicial cooperation
in criminal matters. It is our experience that the difficulties
and sometimes controversy (eg the European Arrest Warrant)
lie not in the existence of such a power but fears about the way
in which it may be exercised.
29 The subject of our Report Minimum Standards in
Asylum Procedures (11th Report, Session 2000-01, HL Paper
59). A revised text of the proposal is being prepared. Back
The subject of our Report Minimum Standards of reception conditions
for asylum seekers (8th Report, Session 2001-02, HL Paper
Council Directive 2003/9/EC of 27 January 2003 laying down minimum
standards for the reception of asylum seekers.  OJ L 46/18. Back
The subject of our Report Asylum applications: who decides?
(19th Report, Session 2001-02, HL Paper 100). Back
Council Directive 2003/9/EC of 27 January 2003 laying down minimum
standards for the reception of asylum seekers  OJ L 31/18. Back
The subject of our Report Defining refugee status and those
in need of international protection (28th Report, Session
2001-02, HL Paper 136). Back
See footnotes 29 and 30 above. Back
Defining refugee status and those in need of international
protection (28th Report, Session 2001-02, HL Paper 136, at
paras 42 and 43). Back
For example in the recent Communication on integrating migration
issues in the EU's relations with third countries (COM (2002)
703 final) currently held under scrutiny by Sub-Committee F. Back
Presidency conclusions (paragraph 27). Back
Article 63(4) TEC is a legal basis for the adoption of measures
defining the rights and conditions under which legally resident
TCNs may reside in other Member States. A proposed Directive under
this Article has been the subject of a detailed inquiry by this
Committee. See The Legal Status of Long-Term Resident Third-Country
Nationals (5th Report, Session 2001-02, HL Paper 33). Back
Presidency Conclusions, paragraphs 30 and 33-36. Back
See our Report A Community Immigration Policy (13th Report,
Session 2000-01, HL Paper 64) and our latest Report A Common
Policy on Illegal Immigration (37th Report, Session 2001-02,
HL Paper 187). Back
The Committee examined this proposal in detail: Asylum Applications-Who
Decides? (19th Report, Session 2001-02, HL Paper 100). Back
Sub-Committee F is currently examining the issue in the context
of its "European Border Guard" inquiry. Back
Once it has considered Part Two in its entirety, it will be for
the Convention to take a decision across the board on any exceptions
to the qualified majority rule and, consequently, on the voting
rules which should apply in this and other Articles of this draft
which refer to unanimity. Back