The European Parliament’s Budget Monitoring Committee has proposed to freeze part of the budget in relation to the financing of the European Union Border and Coast Guard Agency (Frontex) for 2022, the European Parliament announced through a statement.
Additionally, MEPs have also recommended granting the discharge to Frontex for the 2019 budget, which has yet to be approved by the full House of Representatives, TheSchengen.com reports.
“The European Parliament finally adopted, by 27 votes to 2 against and 1 abstention, a request to freeze part of the Frontex 2022 budget, to make it available only once the agency fulfills a number of specific conditions,” the statement published by the European Parliament reads.
MEPs highlighted the agency’s problems with the absence of monitors for fundamental rights, its finances and recruitment procedures. In addition, concerns raised about the agency’s involvement in various illegal matters prompted MEPs to take such a decision.
MEPs have proposed keeping 12 percent of the agency’s draft 2022 budget, or a total of €90 million ($105 million).
The EU budget for 2022 will be discussed in the plenary session of the European Parliament, which will be held from October 18 to October 21.
“It will be voted on by the full House of Representatives during the session of Parliament 18-21 October, prior to negotiations with the Council, with a view to reaching an agreement on the EU budget for the next year by November 15. It can also be put to a vote during the same plenary session”, states the Statement.
Earlier this year, in April, the European Parliament postponed the decision to lay off the agency, urging additional clarification on how Frontex would implement such operations and manage its finances as well as other measures.
Although many organizations across the European Union often accuse the agency of engaging in illegal acts as well as of turning a blind eye to human rights violations reported in the bloc, such a thing has been denied by the agency.
Previously, a report published by the Frontex Scrutini Working Group found no valid evidence of Frontex involvement in human rights abuses, including illegal pushbacks of people seeking international protection in EU countries.
In June, the European Court of Auditors (ECA) stressed that the EU’s border agency was not effectively assisting EU countries and the Schengen area in managing the situation at the EU’s external borders.