InI Logo
Spies-R-Us
Google
 
Web www.williambowles.info
Statewatch News Online, 15 January 2010

Home page: www.statewatch.org/
Support Statewatch's work: Join Friends of Statewatch: www.statewatch.org/fosw.html
Sitemap: www.statewatch.org/sitemap.htm

1.   EU: European Security Research and Innovation Forum: ESRIF Final Report
2.   Italy: After the racist violence in Italy: a Migreurop mission visits the area
3.   UK: House of Commons Justice Committee: Cutting crime: the case for justice reinvestment
4.   EU: Background documents: inc FRONTEXT Specialised branches, “Friends of VIS” & EU-NATO
5.   EU: Spanish Council Presidency: Informal Meeting of Ministers for Justice and Home Affairs
6.   EU: Council of the European Union: Work stopped on the proposal for a Schengen evaluation system
7.   ECHR-UK: Stop-and-search powers ruled illegal by European court
8.   Belgium: Suspicious death of a Tunisian in Vottem detention centre
8.   UK: MI5 'still using threats to recruit Muslim spies'
9.   ITALY: Southern Italian town world's 'only white town' after ethnic cleansing
10. EU: Council of the European Union: Provisional agendas for JHA Council
11. EU: Council of the European Union: Draft Council Decision on the Schengen Borders Code
12. IRELAND: euro 128,25m to be spent on new public services ID cards for over-16s
13. UK: Voter registration: The Political Parties and Elections Act
14. IN THE NEWS:

1. EU: European Security Research and Innovation Forum: ESRIF Final Report (324 pages, 4MB):
www.statewatch.org/news/2009/dec/esrif-final-report.pdf

Background: Report from Statewatch and the Transnational Institute: NeoConOpticon – The EU Security-Industrial Complex by Ben Hayes:
www.statewatch.org/analyses/neoconopticon-report.pdf

2. Italy: After the racist violence in Italy: a Migreurop mission visits the area (link):
www.migreurop.org/article1600.html

– French: www.migreurop.org/article1598.html
– Italian:  www.migreurop.org/article1599.html

3. UK: House of Commons Justice Committee: Cutting crime: the case for justice reinvestment:
www.statewatch.org/news/2010/jan/uk-hoc-justice-cttee-crime-prisons.pdf

“the Government’s main answer to the current overcrowding of prisons and the predicted rise in the prison population—already at a record high—is to provide more prison places rather than to seek to address the root causes of this seemingly incessant growth.”

4. EU: Background documents

– SWIFT: Agreement between the European Union and the United States of America on the processing and transfer of Financial Messaging Data from the European Union to the United States for purposes of the Terrorist Finance Tracking Program (OJ):
www.statewatch.org/news/2010/jan/eu-usa-swift-agreement-oj.pdf

– FRONTEX: Frontex specialised branches (33 pages). FRONTEXT's role is expanding rapidly and will do so even more under the Stockholm Programme. Here a management consultants report to justify creating Mobile Operations Project Teams (MPOT) operating on the ground/sea, Centres of Excellence (CEO) and Intelligence and Liaison Coordination Offices (ILCO):
www.statewatch.org/news/2010/jan/eu-frontex-specialised-branches-17707-09.pdf

– EAW: European Arrest Warrants: Follow-up to the final report on the fourth round of mutual evaluations – The practical application of the European Arrest Warrant and corresponding surrender procedures between Member States (EU doc no: 17132/09). Discusses a number of recommendations (including “provisional arrest”) which could either be brought about by legislation or by the “back-door” through “soft law” Council Conclusions: “non-legislative action is possible. With regard to some recommendations, a possibility of going forward could be the development of best practices. These best practices could be laid down in Council conclusions, but could also be integrated into the European arrest warrant Handbook.”:
www.statewatch.org/news/2010/jan/eu-eaw-4th-report-T17132-09.pdf

– EUROJUST: Strategic Seminar on the implementation of the new Eurojust Decision in the Member States – “ Building new bridges between Eurojust and the Member States” Stockholm, 7 – 8 September 2009 (EU doc no: 16925/09): “This seminar was part of a series of meetings organised in the framework of the Informal Working Group (IWG) on the implementation of the new Eurojust Decision, initiated by Eurojust together with the Trio Presidency, the Council Secretariat and the Commission”
www.statewatch.org/news/2010/jan/eurojust-seminar-16925-09.pdf

– EU-NATO: PMG recommendations on concrete measures to improve EU-NATO cooperation (17344/09):
www.statewatch.org/news/2010/jan/eu-nato-cooperation-17344-09.pdf

– EU diplomatic representation in third countries – First half of 2010 (EU doc no: 17770/09):
www.statewatch.org/news/2010/jan/eu-diplo-rep-17770-09.pdf

– VISA INFORMATION SYSTEM: Programme of deployment of the VIS – Activities of the Group of Friends of the VIS (EU doc no: 14340/09), including: “the start of operations of the VIS will be delayed beyond September 2010, because of certain problems in both the central system and at national level.”
www.statewatch.org/news/2010/jan/eu-council-friends-of-VIS-14340-09.pdf

– Union for the Mediterranean: Draft EU Guidelines and Proposal for a Work Programme for 2010 : JHA issues from p42 (EU doc no: 17594/09):
www.statewatch.org/news/2010/jan/eu-council-mediterranean-guidelines-17594-rev1-09.pdf

5. EU: Spanish Council Presidency: Informal Meeting of Ministers for Justice and Home Affairs, Toledo, 20-22 January 2010: Agenda:
www.statewatch.org/news/2010/jan/informal-jha-spain.pdf

6. EU: Council of the European Union: Work stopped on the proposal for a Schengen evaluation system – no mention of this proposal in the Spanish Council Presidency agendas. See: Draft Council Regulation and draft Council Decision on the establishment of an evaluation mechanism to verify the application of the Schengen acquis – Proposal for the way ahead (15339/1/09):
www.statewatch.org/news/2010/jan/eu-council-schengen-evaluation-mechanism-15339-rev1-09.pdf

The proposal is a non-legislative act to be adopted by the Council. The “way ahead” says that:

“some parts of the draft Regulation and Decision have raised serious concerns with a substantial number of Member States. Even though a greater efficiency of the evaluation mechanism is welcomed in general, the establishment of a new evaluation mechanism implying the (co)existence of two different but parallel evaluation processes is strongly contested. The proposals suggest one evaluation mechanism for new Member States and one for existing Schengen Member States, which is broadly considered not in line with the enhanced efficiency of the mechanism. Furthermore, there is little support among Member States for the substantial shift of competences from the Member States to the Commission.”

It is no wonder that the Member States (governments) on the Committee could not accept the Commission's proposal as the Council's position in an earlier document showed that over 200 objections to the text are expressed in 53 footnotes, see: EU doc no; 13831/2/09:
www.statewatch.org/news/2010/jan/eu-council-schengen-evaluation-mechanism-13831-rev2-09.pdf

7. ECHR-UK: Stop-and-search powers ruled illegal by European court (BBC News, link):
news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/8453878.stm

Terrorism Act 2000 Section 44: “Police powers to use terror laws to stop and search people without grounds for suspicion are illegal, the European Court of Human Rights has ruled.”

and Full-text of judgment:
www.statewatch.org/news/2010/jan/echr-judgment-gillan-quinton.pdf

8. Belgium: Suspicious death of a Tunisian in Vottem detention centre
www.statewatch.org/news/2010/jan/01belgium-tunisian-death.htm

8. UK: MI5 'still using threats to recruit Muslim spies' (Independent, link):
www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/mi5-still-using-threats-to-recruit-muslim-spies-1857750.html

“MI5 faces accusations that its officers have blackmailed and harassed vulnerable immigrants living in Britain as part of a campaign to recruit spies to report on Muslim communities.”

See also: Institute of Race Relations: Spooked! How not to prevent violent extremism (link):
www.irr.org.uk/pdf2/spooked.pdf

9. ITALY: Southern Italian town world's 'only white town' after ethnic cleansing (Guardian, link):
www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/jan/11/italy-rosarno-violence-immigrants/print

“Rosarno in southern Italy had, by last night, been turned into what one politician termed the world's only entirely white town after a bloody ethnic cleansing that produced scenes reminiscent of the old American deep south. As bulldozers got to work to obliterate shacks belonging to the itinerant crop-pickers who had fled, the last of more than 1,000 such workers were being removed from the area for their own protection. After two days and nights of violence that began with the apparently motiveless shooting of two African workers, the number of injured stood at 53, comprising     18 police, 14 local people and 21 immigrants, eight of whom were in hospital.”

and: Immigrants riot in Italy amid racial unrest (AlertNet, link): “Clashes between immigrants and locals in a southern Italian town entered a second day on Friday, with the government rushing extra police to try to stem one of the worst episodes of racial unrest in years.”
www.alertnet.org/thenews/newsdesk/LDE60716O.htm

10. EU: Council of the European Union: Provisional agendas for meetings of the Council of Ministers (JHA Council pp28-41). Note the new format:
www.statewatch.org/news/2010/jan/eu-council-prov-agendas.pdf

1) Legislative deliberations;
2) Non-legislative activities (which does not mean to say that these issues are unimportant, on the contrary, they can include substantive decisions on implementation under the Regulatory procedure);
3) Mixed Committee: Schengen: (including the Schengen Information System, SIS & SIS II) and includes Iceland and Switzerland and soon Norway;
4) “A” items: Measures “nodded” through without discussion – again can contain substantive measures/legislation which while agreed by to EU governments may raise substantive concerns for civil society (and sometimes national parliaments).

11. EU: Council of the European Union: Draft Council Decision supplementing the Schengen Borders Code as regards the surveillance of the sea external borders in the context of the operational cooperation coordinated by the European Agency for the Management of Operational Cooperation at the External Borders being considered under the “Regulatory procedure”, (EU doc no: 17511/09):
www.statewatch.org/news/2010/jan/eu-council-surv-sea-borders-frontex-17511-09.pdf

12. IRELAND: euro 128;25m to be spent on new public services ID cards for over-16s (Irish Times, link):
www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/frontpage/2009/1231/1224261482444_pf.html

“The government is to spend almost euro 128;25 million on a new public services identity card which will be distributed to about three million people over the age of 16 from next year. The card will contain the holder’s name, photograph, signature and public service number, which is used to access welfare benefits and other State services. In addition, personal details such as a person’s date of birth, former surnames and the mother’s surname are likely to be electronically encoded on the card.”

13. UK: Voter registration: The Political Parties and Elections Act in action:
www.statewatch.org/news/2010/jan/uk-voter-registration.pdf

Voter registration is to switch from those registered in a household to the individual: “From 2011 onwards, the Commission will report annually to Parliament on the progress of the voluntary collection of personal identifiers – National Insurance number, signature and date of birth – from electors, to make sure that the conditions are appropriate before any move to compulsory provision of identifiers.” (emphasis added). NB: Most problems have not beenwith registration but with impersonation through postal voting.

14. IN THE NEWS:

– Robot border guards to patrol future frontiers (New Scientist, link)

– USA: Meet Mikey, 8: U.S. Has Him on Watch List (N York Times, link): www.nytimes.com/2010/01/14/nyregion/14watchlist.html “It is true that Mikey is not on the federal government’s “no-fly” list, which includes about 2,500 people, less than 10 percent of them from the United States. But his name appears to be among some 13,500 on the larger “selectee” list, which sets off a high level of security screening. At some point, someone named Michael Hicks made the Department of Homeland Security suspicious, and little Mikey is still paying the price.” See also: Wikipedia No Fly Lists (link): en.wikipedia.org/wiki/No_Fly_List

– IRELAND: Migrants from new EU states 'denied welfare' (Irish Times, link):
www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/ireland/2010/0111/1224262053852.html

– SWITZERLAND: Police Smash School for Undocumented Migrants (Inter Press Service, link):
ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=49924

 - UK-YEMEN: British Muslims detained in Yemen claim they were tortured in prison (Guardian, link): Group were 'interrogated about London mosques'@
www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/jan/11/british-muslims-yemen-allege-torture/print

________________________________________________
Statewatch: Monitoring the state and civil liberties in Europe
PO Box 1516, London, N16 0EW. UK
tel: +44(0)20-8802-1882; fax: +44(0)20-8880-1727
www.statewatch.org

Back to Main Index | Spies R Us