Latvia decides against emergency justice and home affairs meeting
Latvia, which holds the rotating presidency of the EU’s Council of Ministers, has decided against calling an extraordinary meeting of justice and home affairs ministers to discuss the EU’s response to the attacks in Paris.
Instead, the presidency wants to have an in-depth discussion on counter-terrorism measures at an informal meeting of justice and home affairs ministers in Riga on 29 January. That meeting, which was planned before the attacks in Paris, would lay the groundwork for a summit of EU leaders being held on 12-13 February in Brussels.
A spokesman for the presidency said: “The best way to get the best results is to have a well-prepared [European] Council. The best way to do that is to use the 29 January meeting.”
The idea of holding a meeting of justice and home affairs ministers this week was suggested on Sunday in response to the attacks on the offices of satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo and a kosher supermarket that left 17 people dead.
Donald Tusk, the president of the European Council, announced that the February summit would focus on counter-terrorism measures. One issue that is expected to be high up on the agenda is agreeing a European system for the exchange of airline passenger information. Liberal and Green MEPs are opposed to rushing through a deal on the legislation, arguing that a quick agreement could erode civil liberties.
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