On 25 January the Executive Director of eu-LISA Krum Garkov and the Director of the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) Michael O'Flaherty jointly presented the activities of the nine Justice and Home Affairs Agencies Network to the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs of the European Parliament in Brussels. The Executive Director of eu-LISA reported on the key activities and achievements under eu-LISA chairmanship of the network in 2015 (Read the full Report). The Director of FRA, the Agency chairing the network in 2016, presented the outlook and key priorities for this year.
In the joint presentation the two directors elaborated on the specifics of cooperation among the nine agencies belonging to the network in the field of irregular migration, including Hotspots, in combating foreign terrorist fighters and human trafficking as well as developments related to border control and registration procedures. Video footage of Mr Garkov's presentation can be viewed on eu-LISA's Youtube Channel.
Prior to the LIBE Committee meeting the Executive Director of eu-LISA Krum Garkov and the Director of FRA Michael O'Flaherty held a bilateral meeting. They focused on the collaboration initiatives between the Justice and Home Affairs Agencies and the role that the network has in responding to the current challenges in the area of freedom, security and justice.
Furthermore, the heads of both Agencies took stock of the bilateral cooperation initiatives between eu-LISA and FRA, in particular within the Smart Borders Pilot project. Concerning other joint activities the directors discussed the on-going study, coordinated by FRA, on the fundamental rights implications of the use of biometric data in large-scale IT systems, and the exchange of know-how in the area of information communication technologies.
The network of EU Justice and Home Affairs (JHA) Agencies is composed of EU Agencies eu-LISA, CEPOL, EASO, EIGE, EMCDDA, Europol, Eurojust, FRA, Frontex and the European Commission and the European External Action Service. The Agencies are in charge of the coordination of a wide range of security and judicial matters in the EU ranging from cooperation in police, border control, asylum, judicial and drug related matters to fundamental rights, gender equality, operational management of IT systems and providing training for police authorities. In 2015 eu-LISA held the chairmanship of the network facilitating cooperation on the commonly agreed priority areas, i.e. awareness raising on and wider sharing of existing analysis and reports within the limits of the mandates of the Agencies, identifying synergies in the provision of training to law enforcement authorities, determining the needs for cooperation in IT services and solutions and enhancing the visibility of JHA Agencies at national and EU level.
The full names of the JHA Agencies are:
- eu-LISA - European Agency for the Operational Management of Large-Scale IT Systems in the Area of Freedom, Security and Justice
- CEPOL - European Police College
- EASO - European Asylum Support Office
- EIGE - European Institute for Gender Equality
- EMCDDA - European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction
- Europol - European Police Office
- Eurojust - European Union's Juridical Cooperation Unit
- FRA - European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights
- Frontex - European Agency for the Management of Operational Cooperation at the External Borders of the member States of the European Union