EU Parliaments to Create Joint Group to Supervise Europol Activities

President of European Parliament Antonio Tajani (L) and Slovak Parliamentary Chair Andrej Danko at the summit on April 24, 2017 (photo by TASR)

Bratislava, April 24 (TASR) – EU national parliaments will create a Joint Parliamentary Scrutiny Group (JPSG) to monitor Europol activities, with each member state obliged to nominate up to four members, according to an agreement reached by representatives of EU parliaments at a summit in Bratislava on Monday.

Regardless of the number of members, each country will be entitled to one vote in the JPSG.

“We’ve managed to accomplish really good diplomatic work. Comments from both national parliaments and the European Parliament received thorough attention, and we managed to arrive at a compromise,” said Slovak Parliamentary Chair Andrej Danko (Slovak National Party/SNS) at a press conference.

The European Parliament will be represented by 16 members in the JPSG, which is slated to be called into session twice a year – once in Brussels and once in a presiding country. The first session has already been scheduled for the autumn of 2017, with the Slovak Parliament authorised to choose representatives on behalf of Slovakia. According to Danko, it would be a good idea to give the parliamentary defence and security committee the final say over nominations.

After the conclusion of the summit, Danko confirmed that parliamentary democracy has come under pressure in the EU and faces dangers in several countries. “Cooperation within the EU is rooted in values. The Union has always served as a shining example of decency, tolerance and respect for human rights. I’ve learnt that every national parliament faces problems posed by populist forces, which want to attack the system in which both states and the EU as a whole operate. Therefore, we reflected on what we are doing wrong and discussed how to bring politics and policies closer to people in a way that will restore public trust in the EU,” said Danko.