Press Release - Minister of Interior presented the Cyprus Presidency priorities to the European Parliamentary Committee on Civil Liberties Justice and Home Affairs
10.07.2012, 12:59 (CET)
Migration and asylum issues, the proposed EUROSUR Regulation, the fight against human trafficking and 2013, the European Year of Citizens are some of the issues presented by the Minister of Interior Ms Eleni Mavrou to the Committee of the European Parliament for Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE).

During her presentation to the LIBE committee of the European Parliament (EP) on Tuesday July 10, Minister of Interior Ms Eleni Mavrou stressed the importance of fiscal consolidation in view of the financial crisis and the urgent need to guarantee democracy, solidarity, equality and respect for human dignity.

Concerning immigration and asylum issues, the minister informed the members of the Committee that the Cyprus Presidency will closely monitor the implementation of the conclusions on a common framework towards genuine and practical solidarity towards member states, whose asylum systems are placed under particular pressure. She added that "in the field of asylum, the first priority remains the completion of the Common European Asylum System by the end of 2012 in accordance with the Stockholm Programme".

Referring to the challenges arising from demographic changes in Europe, the minister stressed the importance of cooperation between the member states, which is based on mutual trust and solidarity, for a comprehensive European migration policy based on common procedures of reception and fair treatment of third country nationals.

Regarding the issue of legal immigration, the minister said that "we are committed to working closely with Parliament in order to complete the proposals under negotiation for directives on seasonal workers and intra-corporate transferees"

In reference to the issue of border management, the minister informed the Committee that "the Cyprus Presidency is committed to promoting, in close cooperation with Parliament, the proposed Regulation for EUROSUR". Referring to the issue of visas, the Interior Minister said that "we will continue negotiations with the Parliament in a constructive spirit to reach agreement on the issue of visa regulation, a pertinent issue for the EU's visa policy that needs to be resolved."

The minister added that special attention will be given to the fight against human trafficking, which remains a major challenge for member states, "the Cyprus Presidency will promote Council conclusions on the new EU strategy to eliminate human trafficking."

Aiming for an EU closer to citizens, the minister stated that "the Cyprus Presidency will work closely with the EP to ensure that 2013, the European Year of Citizens will have a significant and far reaching impact, and we will make every effort to successfully complete consultation with the Parliament as soon as possible. "

In reference to the regulations regarding the Financial Tools within the Home Affairs area under the Multiannual Financial Framework, the minister said, “The promotion of proposed Council Regulations is a key challenge and priority of the Cyprus Presidency at the next stage of the codecision procedure, whilst always being in compliance with the principles of transparency before the member states, the Council and the EP”

Concluding, the minister assured the Committee that the Cyprus Presidency "will act as an honest broker and will work towards a better Europe in the spirit of the fundamental principles of the Union for a Europe that means more for its citizens, in solidarity and social cohesion towards a Europe closer to its neighbors". In closing, the minister stressed that the European Parliament's contribution to this effort is essential.

Presidency Spokesperson in Brussels
Nikos Christodoulides

Coreper II

Telephone: +32 27395152
Mobile: +32 473400441
Administrative Officer
Natasa Economou

Ministry of Interior
Coordinator of European Affairs Unit
Telephone: +357 22867733