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European Council Turns European Asylum Support Office Into a Fully-Fledged Agency

The Council of the European Union has adopted the Regulation on the EU Asylum Agency, which aims to facilitate the application of the asylum policy within the bloc by transforming the existing European Asylum Support Office (EASO) into a fully qualified agency.

Based on the newly approved regulation, the agency will now be responsible for improving the functioning of the Common European Asylum System by providing advanced technical and operational assistance to member states, reports.

In addition, the same will contribute to a greater convergence of the assessment of applications for international protection.

“Having a full-fledged EU asylum agency is an important step in building our common EU policy on asylum. This agency will be able to provide rapid and tangible support to member states where the need arises. Commenting on the adoption of the new regulation, the Slovenian Minister of the Interior, Alec Höggs, said It will also contribute to our cooperation with third countries, and demonstrate in a very tangible way the strength of our joint work.

In addition, the regulations for the EU Asylum Agency strengthen the existing mandate of EASO and facilitate the deployment of experts to member states that request operational support.

Moreover, the objective of the EU Asylum Policy is to develop a Common European Asylum System (CEAS) in line with humanitarian traditions and the values ​​of the Union.

CEAS is based on common standards for international protection procedures and recognition offered at the EU level.

Apart from that, the new legislation helps the agency support cooperation between member states and other countries. Hence, this will contribute to solidarity among the member states and the overall external dimension of the European Union.

According to the Council, reform of the EU’s common asylum system aims to:

Create a common framework that assists in a comprehensive approach to the management of asylum and migration. Make the current system more resistant and efficient. Eliminate secondary kinematics and pull factors.

Other legislative proposals on the table include the introduction of a new mandatory pre-entry screening, which will consist of identification, health and security checks, as well as registration and fingerprinting. All concerned persons will be directed to the relevant procedure at the end of the examination.

The new screening regulation aims to ensure the rapid identification of the appropriate procedure applicable to a person entering the EU without meeting entry requirements.

>> EU Parliament debates the current status of immigration and asylum policy in the bloc

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