On 14 September, the Council gave final approval for the adoption of the European Border and Coast Guard Regulation. The European Border and Coast Guard agency will be the successor of Frontex, with expanded competences. The agency’s activities which are set to begin on 6 October include technical and operational assistance in support of search and rescue operations, appointing liaison officers of the agency in Member States, drafting vulnerability assessments of Member States’ border control capacity and organising, coordinating and conducting return operations and interventions.

One of the most contentious provisions in the Regulation is the establishment of a rapid reserve pool of at least 1500 border guards that can be sent to a country without the country’s explicit consent. The European Commission can propose an intervention and after the Parliament’s approval, the Border and Coast Guard agency will then intervene in a crisis situation, even if the country is reluctant to receive help. ECRE has previously published a joint briefing with Amnesty International and the International Commission of Jurists on the original proposal for a Regulation in April in which it expressed serious concerns about the working and competences of the agency.

For further information:

ECRE, Joint Briefing on the European Border and Coast Guard Regulation, 8 April 2016