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European network for the protection of public figures

The responsibility for protecting public figures against assaults or attacks when visiting the European Union (EU) lies with the EU countries. Due to the growing number of visits to the EU, this decision sets up a European network for the protection of public figures to act as an official communication and consultation channel for national authorities.

ACT

Council Decision 2002/956/JHA of 28 November 2002 setting up a European Network for the Protection of Public Figures [See amending act(s)].

SUMMARY

The protection of visiting public figures is the responsibility of the host European Union (EU) country. Following a Council recommendation of 6 December 2001 setting a common scale for assessing threats to public figures visiting the EU and an initiative of Spain, the Council adopted this decision to close loopholes in the law on the protection of public figures.

This decision sets up a European network for the protection of public figures. The network consists of national police and other competent services dealing with the protection of public figures. Each EU country designates a national contact point for the network. Candidate countries to the EU as well as Europol may also designate contact points.

The public figures covered by the decision are those who visit the EU either in an official or non-official capacity and to whom a protection service is assigned under the national law of an EU country or the rules of an international or supranational organisation or institution.

The EU country holding the Presidency of the Council is responsible for promoting the activities of the network.

The objectives of the network are to:

  • promote the exchange of general and technical information and experience between the national services participating in the network;
  • promote the development of a set of common best practices for the operational activities of the national services;
  • promote the reciprocal secondment of national officials;
  • allow the national services participating in the network to exchange information, communicate and develop common views on procedures and methods relating to the protection of public figures;
  • encourage the exchange of operational information concerning the application of security when a public figure must be protected in two or more EU countries;
  • encourage collaboration between the authorities of national protection services on the application of protection when the public figure must be protected in two or more EU countries.

The network must report annually to the Council, which is to evaluate the activities of the network every three years.

REFERENCES

ActEntry into forceDeadline for transposition in the Member StatesOfficial Journal
Decision 2002/956/JHA

29.11.2002

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OJ L 333 of 10.12.2002

Amending act(s)Entry into forceDeadline for transposition in the Member StatesOfficial Journal
Decision 2009/796/JHA

19.11.2009

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OJ L 283 of 30.10.2009

Last updated: 08.04.2010
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