UK-EU: BREXIT: UK to seek a deal on continued cooperation on crime, policing and terrorism
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As indicated previously by Ministers the UK will seek to "deal" on future cooperation with the EU:
"As we exit, we will therefore look to negotiate the best deal we can with the EU to cooperate in the fight against crime and terrorism. We will seek a strong and close future relationship with the EU, with a focus on operational and practical cross-border cooperation. We will seek a relationship that is capable of responding to the changing threats we face together. Public safety in the UK and the rest of Europe will be at the heart of this aspect of our negotiation." (para 11.7)
See: White Paper on BREXIT: The United Kingdoms exit from and new partnership with the European Union (pdf). See crime and terrorism on pages 61-62.
The White Paper emphasises the extensive UK contribution to EU policies, databases and operations:
"Our pre-existing security relationship with the EU and its Member States means that we are uniquely placed to develop and sustain a mutually beneficial model of cooperation in this area from outside the Union. We are starting from a position of strong relations with EU Member States, where we have been at the forefront of developing a number of EU tools which encourage joint working across the continent to protect citizens and our way of life:
the UK is one of the biggest contributors to Europol systems, supporting police forces across the UK and Europe in the fight against cross border crime;
the UK currently participates in all 13 of Europols current operational priority projects. We are driving, or co-driving, almost half of Europol projects against serious organised crime;
from 2004 to 2015 we extradited over 8,000 individuals accused or convicted of criminal offence to other EU countries using the European Arrest Warrant;
Schengen Information System II is a European-wide alerts system that includes alerts for wanted or suspected criminals. From April 2015 to April 2016, over 6,400 foreign alerts received hits in the UK, allowing UK enforcement agencies to take appropriate action, whilst over 6,600 UK-issued alerts received hits across Europe.
the UK has been a leading proponent of the new EU Passenger Name Records rules, which mean information will soon be collected in all Member States that will make it harder for organised criminals and terrorists to hide their movements; and
the UK is the fourth largest user of European Criminal Records Information System (ECRIS). In 2015/16 the majority of the over 155,000 requests for overseas criminal convictions information were made to EU countries through ECRIS. EU Member States also benefit from notification messages we provide about their nationals who have been convicted in the UK, with the vast majority of the over 46,000 notifications made through ECRIS." (para 11.2)
"Operational cooperation with our European partners has continued since the
referendum and the UK will continue to participate fully in EU security and criminal justice measures while we remain a member of the EU." (para 11.3)
"Key European partners have made clear that they intend to continue, and indeed deepen, security cooperation, recognising UK expertise in the fight against terrorism, particularly in light of recent attacks and the threat posed by foreign terrorist fighters." (para 11.4)
"Our commitment to cooperation on cyber security with our European and global allies will be undiminished and we will continue to work closely with international partners to build capability in countering cyber threats and to ensure the continuation of a free, open, peaceful and secure cyberspace." (para 11.5)
"Similarly, serious and organised crime is a transnational threat, requiring a cross-border response. The UK has an excellent record on tackling serious and organised crime, but this alone is not enough; if we are to reduce the threat of serious and organised crime we must continue to work together with our European partners." (para 11.6)
The White Paper states that:
"It is in all our interests that we continue our deep cooperation with the EU and its Member States to tackle these threats together."
See also: House of Lords Select Committee: Brexit: future UK-EU security and police cooperation (pdf) and Home Office: The UKs cooperation with the EU on justice and home affairs, and on foreign policy and security issues (pdf)
And: Brexit talks will descend into fist-fighting, warns Sir Ivan Rogers (Guardian, link): "UKs former ambassador to EU tells MPs UK government must make stone-cold sober analysis of consequences of a hard Brexit."
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