Statewatch 18 May 2011 What is a document?

18 May 2011 — Statewatch

European Parliament to revisit the definition of a “document” and adopt its report on the changes to Regulation on access to EU documents

– “the definition of ‘document’ is an issue of primary law, ie the interpretation of the Treaty by the Court of Justice – it is not open to the institutions to define it in a way which limits the correct interpretation and application of the Treaty. In other words the rules on access to documents must apply to all ‘documents’ as defined by the Treaty – they cannot exclude entirely from their scope anything which is a document as defined by the Treaty.” (Professor Steve Peers)

– “If the price of getting discussions on the Regulation moving is to limit or restrict the current definition of a “document”, which has been in place since 1993, then it is far too high a price to pay. The definition is the bedrock of the right of access and of EU accountability.” (Tony Bunyan)

– Reject any changes to the definition of a “document”, abolish the “space to think” in Article 4.3 of the Regulation (ie: to refuse access to EU documents under discussion) and no secret “trilogues”

Press contact: Tony Bunyan:
00 44 (0) 208 802 1882

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

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