Policy Themes

Crime and terrorism

The European Commission is not in charge of operational activities in the fight against crime and terrorism but supports and facilitates the activities of security practitioners at EU level.

The European Agenda on Security

The main policy framework is the European Agenda on Security (COM(2015) 185 final) adopted on 28th April 2015. The agenda provides a strategic focus for the EU and member states with the overall goal of strengthening the EU security policy framework. The three pillars of the EU Agenda on Security to achieve this goal are:

  • Support the exchange of information
  • Increase operational cooperation
  • Provide training, funding, research, and innovation

The main priorities listed in the agenda are terrorism, organised crime, and cybercrime.

Communication on the delivery of the Agenda on Security (COM(2016) 230 final) was adopted in April 2016acknowledging the common position of the European Parliament, the EU Ministers for Justice and Home Affairs and the European Commission to press ahead with the measures and to deepen the fight against terrorism. For this reason, the communication took stock of the progress made in the previous year to implement the agenda.

Other Relevant Policies

In addition to the agenda, there are a number of more specific EU legislative and policy documents that apply to crime and terrorism. Two of the most relevant are:

  • Regulation (EU) No 98/2013 of the European Parliament and of the European Council of 15 January 2013 on the marketing and use of explosives precursors.
  • Communication COM(2016) 379 final on supporting the prevention of radicalization leading to violent extremism.

European Forensic Science

On 13 and 14 December 2011, the Council approved (17537/11 ENFOPOL 413 COPEN 342) - the vision for European Forensic Science 2020, including the creation of a European Forensic Science Area and the development of forensic science infrastructure in Europe. The aim is to foster cooperation between police and judicial authorities across the EU and an action plan developed under the Dutch presidency was adopted in June 2016.

Additional Support

The European Commission assists member states in the implementation of existing legal instruments such as the Data Retention Directive and Visa Information System. The European Commission also participates in specialised working groups of the Council such as COSI, and agencies such as Europol and CEPOL Support to security practitioners is also given via financing of national and multinational projects that enhance police cooperation.

More information

Details of projects in this theme can be found on the JRC database