Reinforcing the Surveillance of EU Borders: The Future Development of FRONTEX and EUROSUR

Tuesday, 19 August 2008
CHALLENGE Papers (closed in 2009)
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This paper assesses the implications of the European Commission Communications on the evaluation and future development of FRONTEX (European Agency for the Management of Operational Cooperation at the External Borders of the Member States of the European Union) and the establishment of EUROSUR (European border surveillance system). It emphasises that the evaluation of the activities conducted by the EU’s external borders agency over the period 2006–07 fails to address the impact of such undertakings on fundamental rights and freedoms, solely focusing on technical issues and overall efficiency. It argues, furthermore, that the prospects for the development of FRONTEX, including through the proposal for EUROSUR, do not sufficiently address this matter either, while envisaging a significant reinforcement of the modalities of surveillance aimed at the EU’s external borders. The paper discusses the proposals presented in the two Communications, showing how they raise issues from a legal, technical, budgetary and political (i.e. the political desirability of additional measures for surveillance at the EU borders) standpoint. It concludes with a set of recommendations regarding how the prospects included in the two Communications should be approached.

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