EU Justice Ministers Debate European Prosecutor’s Office, Cybercrime

Slovak Justice Minister Lucia Zitnanska (right) and the EU Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality Vera Jourova. (Photo by TASR)

Bratislava, July 8 (TASR) – The setting up of a European prosecutor’s office, combatting cybercrime and electronic communication in judiciary were the main issues discussed by EU justice ministers at an informal meeting in Bratislava on Friday.

It was preceded by a session of justice ministers from the Eastern Partnership countries with representatives of EU bodies in Bratislava on Thursday.

Friday’s talks were headed by Slovak Justice Minister Lucia Zitnanska, with the EU Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality Vera Jourova (Czech Republic) also on hand.

Zitnanska pointed out that the talks on setting up the EU prosecutor’s office have been ongoing for three years, and that Slovakia has now received the draft – in a significantly changed version compared to the original.

“Our ambition is to put on the discussion table a complete version,” said Zitnanska. She added that after the Commission presents an economic analysis, Slovakia will strive to make as much progress as possible.

“We all realise that we need an efficient tool to fight against crime that affects the EU’s financial interests,” said Zitnanska.

Meanwhile, cybercrime has become an especially hot issue following the recent terror attacks in the EU involving IT networking. Zitnanska adds that while there’s a need for the protection of privacy, states need effective instruments to prosecute serious crimes such as terrorism. At the same time, such challenges are virtually impossible to be resolved at the national level, added the Slovak minister.