The Hungarian Presidency has achieved its main goals in the field of justice, said Minister of Public Administration and Justice Tibor Navracsics in Brussels on 15 June 2011. He drew a balance of the Hungarian Presidency at the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs of the European Parliament (EP).
According to the Minister, the Hungarian Presidency has focussed on the human dimension, serving EU citizens, and this effort has been a success.
A key issue was the Charter of Fundamental Rights. At its informal Council meeting held in January, Hungary initiated a debate on how EU political institutions, primarily the Council, could guarantee the respect of the rights included in the Charter. The issue resulted in a set of formal Council conclusions in May, and the Council adopted guidelines for its own work in June, he explained.
The EU accession to the European Convention on Human Rights has been a priority for the Hungarian Presidency. During its term, the EU concluded the last round of expert meetings which could pave the way for the adoption of internal legislation related to the accession, the Minister said.
The assistance of crime victims has been a priority for the Hungarian Presidency. Hungary hosted a related conference in Budapest in March. As a result of which, it proposed a victim protection roadmap, which was adopted under the name of Budapest Roadmap by the 9-10 June meeting of the Justice and Home Affairs Council, Mr Navracsics pointed out.
In order to repeal the framework decision on combating the sexual exploitation and sexual abuse of children, the Hungarian Presidency started a trialogue with the EP. “We are on the threshold of an agreement and have a reasonable hope that the legislative procedure will come to a successful completion during the Hungarian Presidency”, the Minister said.
In the field of data protection, the Hungarian Presidency achieved its goal: to have a set of Council conclusions adopted.
The negotiations about the EU-US agreement on the protection of personal data have also started, and they have been monitored by different Council formations, said Mr Navracsics.
The draft directive on the right to information in criminal proceedings has also been a priority. “In the course of the trialogue with the European Parliament, we have managed to achieve an agreement, but we must continue to discuss the proposal. I think we will soon adopt a version of the text which is acceptable for both the Council and the European Parliament. This calls for further flexibility from both parties”, Mr Navracsics pointed out.
The 10 June 2011 Council meeting managed to achieve an agreement on the European Investigation Order concerning the general part of the proposal. Thus, the Polish Presidency will only have to discuss the special investigation acts, the Minister emphasised.
“Also, we have continuously kept the draft directive on the attacks against IT systems on the agenda, and managed to develop a preliminary position paper at the Council’s session on 10 June 2011”, Mr Navracsics pointed out.
We set out to make significant progress concerning the succession regulation, and we managed to adopt a package of political compromises at the meeting of Justice Ministers. This allows a “free turnover” of succession decisions of Member States. In other words, it will facilitate the cross-border enforcement of estate claims, he explained.
The amendment of the Brussels I Proposal, i.e. the regulation on the mutual recognition and execution of judgements in civil and commercial matters, has also been a priority for the Hungarian Presidency. The intense expert work enabled us to develop a Presidency draft after adoption of the text at first reading, which could be the basis for further codification, the Minister said.