EU: Reactions to proposal for EU-PNR system

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European Airline body dismayed at proposal for EU-PNR system (Association of European Airlines press release, pdf). Ulrich Schulte-Strathaus, Secretary General of the Association of European Airlines said:

"Commissioner Frattini's proposed decentralised system means that our carriers will have to comply with 27 different national data collection systems. We are talking about an operational and technical nightmare – and the Commission totally ignores the financial implications for the airline industry, which we haven't even started assessing yet."

The Association is also calling for the EU-PNR system to be "applied to all transport modes, so as to avoid discrimination and comptetitive distortions" (that is, to sea, rail and land travel).

Green group in the European Parliament: Civil liberties: New anti-terror measures seem unnecessary and incoherent (link) Dutch Green and civil liberties spokesperson Kathalijne Buitenweg said the:

"proposal on the retention of air passenger data in the EU seems unnecessary and incoherent. The Commission has made no attempt to justify why these measures are necessary and why the existing legislation is not sufficient - an existing Directive on passenger data from 2004 has yet to be fully implemented! (1) It is also incoherent to propose a European-level decision on data storage, while leaving the issues of data protection and how the data should be processed fully to national legislators."

ALDE (liberal group) in European Parliament: New EU anti-terrorism measures will further erode our civil liberties (link) Sophie In't Veld (D66, Netherlands) and EP rapporteur on PNR issues for the committee on Justice and Civil Liberties said:

"We should not be compounding the mistakes of the July PNR agreement with the US by introducing our own - at least until there is serious and irrefutable proof that such mass exchange of personal data is resulting in the arrest of terrorists.I remain adamant that PNR data should not be used as an indiscriminate form of data profiling."

Commission proposes EU-PNR: PNR (passenger name record) scheme proposed to place under surveillance all travel in and out of the EU

For full background and the European Commission's PNR proposal see Observatory: EU surveillance of passengers (PNR) (link)

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