Wednesday

30th Sep 2020

MEPs: Schengen row mars Danish EU presidency

Member states' decision to exclude the European Parliament from monitoring the EU's passport free area has blighted the entire Danish EU presidency, MEPs have said.

Denmark's minister of justice, Morten Bodskov, defended the move in the European Parliament's civil liberties committee on Wednesday (20 June), noting that member states will still seek out parliament's non-binding opinions on the issue.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Become an expert on Europe

Get instant access to all articles — and 20 years of archives. 14-day free trial.

... or subscribe as a group

  • The parliament will continue to boycott the Danish EU presidency and member states on Schengen-related legislation (Photo: mpd01605)

"The Schengen [passport-free treaty] evaluation has attracted a lot of attention. The differences of opinion is too bad," he said.

MEPs - for the most part - remained unconvinced.

The assembly is currently boycotting the Danish presidency on five justice and home affairs dossiers until it gets a legislative role in the passport arena.

"It was much more than a difference of opinion, it was a breach of trust ... It is a pity that you have to end your presidency in this manner," Simon Busuttil, Maltese MEP from the centre-right EPP group, said.

The Socialist group also refuses to continue any negotiations on Schengen-related laws.

"We would have expected more from the presidency," said British centre-left MEP Claude Moraes.

The rift comes amid negotiations on new EU asylum laws on Thursday.

For her part, Romanian Liberal MEP Renate Weber criticised the Danes for failing to promote a "spirit of solidarity" inside Brussels on both the Schengen and the asylum issues.

Parliament wants member states to agree on outstanding points, such as grounds of detention, detention of vulnerable people - including children - automatic judicial review of detention orders and access to the labour market.

Moraes told Bodskov that asylum seekers should be allowed access to the labour market within nine months after lodging an application for international protection.

The European Commission, for its part, had originally proposed six months. Member states are reportedly pushing for 12 months.

MEPs boycott negotiations with member states in Schengen row

The European Parliament decided on Thursday to boycott negotiations with member states on five home affairs legislative packages until a “satisfactory outcome” on how rules governing the EU borderless area are achieved.

Debt-ridden Cyprus takes on EU presidency

Debt-ridden Cyprus took over the day-to-day running of the EU Sunday becoming the first euro state to take on the presidency since the end of 2010.

News in Brief

  1. Spanish court defenestrates Catalan leader
  2. Report: EU helped Taiwan on name dispute
  3. Belarusian writer goes to Germany for treatment
  4. Rapid Covid-19 tests for developing world imminent
  5. Dutch advised against 'non-essential' travel to Belgium
  6. Covid-19 hit Roma community hard, report finds
  7. Merkel visited Navalny in Berlin hospital
  8. EU's new raw materials strategy 'threatens' climate action

EUobserver under attack in wider battle for EU free press

If EU citizens want to know the truth, then journalists need protection from malicious litigation, as EUobserver joined the list of targets, over an article about the late Maltese journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic Council meets Belarusian opposition leader Svetlana Tichanovskaja
  2. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic Region to invest DKK 250 million in green digitalised business sector
  3. UNESDAReducing packaging waste – a huge opportunity for circularity
  4. Nordic Council of MinistersCOVID-19 halts the 72nd Session of the Nordic Council in Iceland
  5. Nordic Council of MinistersCivil society a key player in integration
  6. UNESDANext generation Europe should be green and circular

Latest News

  1. EU tries to avoid lockdowns as global death toll reaches 1m
  2. Reports: Turkey sent Syrian fighters to Azerbaijan
  3. German presidency tries to end EU's rule-of-law battle
  4. 'Sponsored returns' may shuffle failed asylum seekers around EU
  5. German wins election to be mayor of Romania's third city
  6. Minsk on the edge means whole Eastern Partnership is at risk
  7. Caucasus warfare prompts EU alarm
  8. Summit reloaded and last Brexit round This WEEK

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us