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Sinn Féin table amendments to Europol Bill in an effort to boost accountability and safeguard human rights

13 December, 2006


Sinn Féin spokesperson on Justice, Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD has tabled amendments to the Europol Bill in an effort to boost accountability and safeguard human rights. This Bill is scheduled for report and final stages this evening. Deputy Ó Snodaigh said, "Sinn Féin's amendments would insert provisions for judicial and civilian oversight of the activities of Europol."

Speaking in the Dáil today he said, "Sinn Fein are in favour of cross-jurisdictional co-operation by law enforcement agencies, particularly with the purpose of tackling trafficking in humans and drugs. But we are opposed to the establishment of the supranational unaccountable police force endorsed by the government's Bill.

"Europol can store data not only on persons suspected of having committed an offence but also on persons who it believes will commit an offence, so it has far reaching powers that must be balanced by water-tight protections. Unfortunately the safeguards simply do not exist that need to precede the extension of Europol's powers. Sinn Féin's amendments would insert provisions for judicial and civilian oversight of the activities of Europol.

"Ultimately we need to get our own force in order before giving unfettered police powers to members of Europol." ENDS

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