Statewatch journal
monitoring civil liberties in the European Union

vol 22 no 1

Features

European governments step up repression of anti-austerity activists by Kees Hudig
A total ban on protest was imposed in Frankfurt, demonstrations in Greece were met with police violence, and planned legal reforms in Spain will significantly diminish the right to protest.

Growing racism in the EU not just a Member State issue by Marie Martin
Ethnic profiling on the basis of security concerns is not new. However, as the European Commission struggles to get the Anti-Discrimination directive adopted and the European Union attempts to upgrade equality standards in all Member States, less attention has been paid to the growing role ethnic profiling plays in European policymaking. Still, whether at national or EU level, the logic of targeting certain communities to better protect “ourselves” seems to be gaining ground.

Counter-terrorism, “policy-laundering” and the FATF: legalising surveillance, regulating civil society by Ben Hayes
A joint report by the Transnational Institute and Statewatch concludes that the Financial Action Task Force is subject to insufficient democratic control, oversight and accountability and that its evaluation system serves to restrict the political space in which NGOs and civil society actors operate. The report calls for urgent reforms limiting the scope of the FATF and the clarification of its purpose and intent.

“Securitising maritime transport: shipping merchandise and dealing with stowaways” by Yasha Maccanico
Pressure from international, EU and national measures implemented to counter “illegal” migration has led to changes in maritime transport practices. Shipping companies and ports are motivated to get rid of stowaways who are becoming pawns in a game managed on the basis of practical considerations rather than the law.

UK: Nationwide vigils commemorate deaths in custody by Trevor Hemmings
Despite evidence of institutional and systematic failure and 11 verdicts of unlawful killing since 1990, no state official has been successfully prosecuted for a death in custody. On Father’s Day, 17 June 2012, peaceful vigils were held across the UK in remembrance of those who have died in police detention.

“Complex, technologically fraught and expensive” - the problematic implementation of the Prum Decision by Chris Jones
The implementation of the Prum Treaty has been beset with technical and administrative problems with most Member States still unable to share data. Centralised EU bodies and working groups on information exchange have been created to speed up the implementation process and provide coordination and oversight.

* In addition, the bulletin carries a round-up of new books, reports and publications


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