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EU 'Fundamental Rights and Justice' programme is arse about face - Ó Snodaigh

4 October, 2005

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Justice, Equality and Human Rights Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD has called for a full debate on the Hague Programme. Speaking during today's Justice Committee discussion deputy Ó Snodaigh said, the action plan for the implementation of the programme is "arse about face".

Speaking after the Committee he said, „Minister McDowell agreed with me that in light of the rejection of the Constitution the Hague programme will have to be looked at again.

"The stated objective of the Hague Programme is to create an Area of Freedom, Security and Justice but Sinn Féin is concerned that contentious measures relating to the transfer of sentenced persons and judicial and police co-operation are being frontloaded ahead of measures relating to minimum standards in the taking of evidence, pre-trial detention procedures and work with respect to police standards. The action plan for the implementation of the programme is arse about face.

"The fact that a series of individual motions relating to the Hague programme have been sent to Committee without debate and back from the Committee without debate, ensures that the Committee is the only forum for discussion. A meeting is to take place in Brussels shortly discussing judicial and police cooperation and national parliaments but the chair indicated that representatives of this parliament's Justice Committee will not be attending.

"The government are smothering debate on EU policy in the area of Justice, with the implicit consent of the other opposition parties." ENDS

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