Justice Minister Tudorel Toader met in Brussels on Tuesday with European Parliament Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs Legislative (LIBE) chair Claude Moraes, discussing, among other things, the priority of making the European Public Prosecutor’s Office (EPPO) operational and improving mutual trust and mutual recognition in criminal matters.
According to a Justice Ministry (MJ) press release, the meeting took place in the context in which Minister Tudorel Toader was scheduled to present the Justice priorities of the Romanian Presidency at the EU Council on Wednesday.
“The Romanian Justice Minister expressed the openness for a close collaboration between the Romanian Presidency at the EU Council and the European Parliament in the pending legislative dossiers. Among other things, it was highlighted the priority given to legislative proposals on electronic evidence in criminal matters, the operation of the European Public Prosecutor’s Office (EPPO), and improving trust and mutual recognition in criminal matters,” the press release points out.
Regarding the EPPO’s operation, the source shows that the Justice Minister has highlighted the importance of collaboration between the Council and the European Parliament with a view to appointing the European Chief Prosecutor in the current legislature, and with regard to the appointment of European prosecutors he voiced confidence that the timetable will be respected, as Romania will nominate candidates until the end of March 2019.
“The President of the LIBE Committee expressed full confidence in Romania’s ability to achieve its justice objectives as Presidency at the EU Council and showed that it could count on the support of the European Parliament to complete as many legislative files as possible in the short interval until the European legislative elections,” the MJ release also reads.
Toader at LIBE: Romania won’t stray from observing rule of law principles
The Romanian Presidency at the Council of the European Union will not stray from the principles of respecting the common European values, fundamental rights and freedoms and the rule of law, Justice Minister Tudorel Toader gave assurances on Wednesday in presenting the priorities in the field of justice in the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice And Home Affairs of the European Parliament (LIBE).
“We will not stray from the general guidelines, from the respect for common values, fundamental rights and liberties, the rule of law,” the Romanian minister highlighted.
The Romanian official mentioned that in the work of the Romanian Presidency at the EU Council in the Justice area there will be used the “consensus method where possible and the compromise method where necessary”.
He announced that a priority in this area will be the advancement in the dossier of creating the European Public Prosecutor’s Office, an extremely important project to combat crime in the European Union.
The European Public Prosecutor’s Office should be operational by no later than November 2020.
With “criminality on the rise at European and international level, the means of fighting it must in turn rise on the European and international level,” Toader said.
Responding to the criticisms expressed by many LIBE MEPs who have voiced concerns about the situation of rule of law and corruption in Romania, the Romanian official said that those criticisms “must be based on correct information and not on anything else.”