EU human rights agency to start in March

15th February 2007, Comments 0 comments

15 February 2007, Brussels (dpa) - The European Union's first human rights agency, a body with limited powers to influence EU law, will start its work in March, EU justice and interior ministers agreed Thursday. The new EU body is designed to replace the more narrowly-focused European Monitoring Centre on Racism and Xenophobia in Vienna. The agency will be tasked with monitoring rights issues in areas such as the bloc's single market and transportation as well as discrimination, domestic violence and racis

15 February 2007

Brussels (dpa) - The European Union's first human rights agency, a body with limited powers to influence EU law, will start its work in March, EU justice and interior ministers agreed Thursday.

The new EU body is designed to replace the more narrowly-focused European Monitoring Centre on Racism and Xenophobia in Vienna.

The agency will be tasked with monitoring rights issues in areas such as the bloc's single market and transportation as well as discrimination, domestic violence and racism.

However, it will not tackle issues involving police and judicial cooperation in criminal matters.

EU member states, in particular Britain and Germany, were afraid that the new human rights body would limit national competences in police and legal issues.

The EU Agency for Fundamental Rights gather and analyze information on fundamental rights and make expertise available to the European institutions and member states, ministers said.

However, EU ministers said earlier that the new agency would not monitor the state of fundamental rights in individual EU member states. They have also said that the new body would not overlap with the work of the 46-member Council of Europe, the continent's top human rights watchdog.

DPA

Subject: German news

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