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Emergency Resolution of the EPP Presidency on Counter-terrorism

After the Islamic State’s (IS) recent barbaric attacks on unarmed civilian citizens in Belgium, Pakistan, Ivory Coast and Turkey, aiming to destroy our most basic values and principles, the EPP remains firm in its commitments and policies to combat terrorism and the extremist radicalization that leads to it.

  1. The EPP firmly condemns the recent terrorist attacks claimed by IS and expresses its deepest sympathy for the victims and their loved ones. Such inhuman actions are anathema to our values and way of life, and have no place whatsoever in our societies. We are defending our core values: Democracy, Freedom, Tolerance and the Rule of Law.
  1. The EPP family remains united and committed in solidarity with the loved ones of all the victims who will have to suffer the long-term consequences of these tragedies. The EPP fully supports any initiative of the European institutions to protect the victims and their families; these initiatives constitute an enduring testimony to our values and principles.
  1. Freedom needs security. The first obligation of politicians and government is to maintain the security of the people. Because of that, we stress and urge the EU to adopt and implement as soon as possible all necessary measures and systems to enhance the fight against terrorism. The exchange of intelligence between EU Member States needs to be urgently improved. We reiterate our urgent call to adopt and implement the Passenger Name Record (PNR) directive to ensure the exchange of data as soon as possible.
  1. Over the course of several generations, we have welcomed people from other cultures who now enjoy a higher access to security, prosperity and freedom than in their countries of origin. Terrorists and human traffickers are the enemies of our free society. The EPP demands immediate action on the following points:
  • It is important to apprehend and incarcerate the perpetrators, accomplices and both active and passive enablers.
  • We will not tolerate any potential risk of Islamic radicalization. It is essential that our governments succeed at nurturing and sustaining a general climate of civic non-permissibility towards the sociocultural, enabling environment of Islamic radicalization.
  • We must equip our police forces and security services with adequate funding, more personnel and the relevant anti-terrorism-training.
  • People migrating to our countries have to accept the rule of law and adopt our values, not the other way around. We will not tolerate any kind of parallel society.
  • Living together requires ambitious educational efforts to ensure that democratic values are effectively taught and absorbed by diaspora communities.
  • We have to support communities and people, in their immediate surroundings in critical areas, who work to spearhead cultural, political and religious reform among diaspora communities.
  • Practitioners in the preventative areas of counter-radicalization and in the treatment of radicalized inmates in prisons should act in coherence with the national security standards of each country, set by the counter-terrorism community.
  • Our best weapon is the rule of law and criminal justice, which must provide a space for our citizens. In this sense, it is urgent to achieve an integrated and coordinated intervention space where prevention, counter-terrorism, and prison practitioners all work coherently based on, and in pursuit of, principles defined by clear national security standards.
  1. The EPP reaffirms its commitment to stand together with Europe`s main democratic political parties. Contrived and unnecessary delays on important directives and their implementation should no longer be political tools, as this only benefits terrorists and their supporters. We urge swift passage, funding, implementation, and standardization among all Member States of the following directives: Passenger Name Record (PNR), European Fingerprint Database (EURODAC), Schengen Information System II (SISII) and European Criminal Record System (ECRIS), as well as the Directive on Terrorism.
  1. The EPP supports the JHA Council’s recent measures setting up the following:
  • a joint liaison on counter-terrorism in Europol´s European Counter Terrorism Centre (ECTC) to monitor foreign fighters, terrorist financing and illegal arms trafficking;
  • the Radicalization Awareness Network;
  • the Strategic Communications Network;
  • the mandatory exchange of information between intelligence services with regard to persons suspected of being terrorists, illegal weapon dealers or human or drug traffickers, via the European Counter Terrorism Centre (ECTC) at the European level.