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COUNCIL OF ...

    COUNCIL OF THE EUROPEAN UNION

    Council conclusions on Exchange Programme for

    police officers inspired by Erasmus

    3010th GENERAL AFFAIRS Council meeting

    Luxembourg, 26 April 2010

The Council adopted the following conclusions:

"Whereas:

    (1) In the period since the European Council meeting in Tampere in October 1999 decided to

    set up a European Police College (CEPOL), the European Union's work on cooperation on

    police training has advanced considerably.

    (2) The added value of this aspect of cooperation between the Member States was also

    highlighted by the European Council in the November 2004 Hague Programme on

    strengthening freedom, security and justice in the EU, which stated that the establishment of

    systematic exchange programmes for police officers was an appropriate means of stepping

    up police cooperation.

    (3) The exchange programmes for senior police officers and police training staff, which the

    European Police College has been running since 2006, are a result of the work on carrying

    out this mandate.

(4) The Stockholm Programme - an open and secure Europe serving and protecting the citizens,

    adopted by the European Council on 10 and 11 December 2009, highlights the importance

    for the successful implementation of the Programme of training and of increasing mutual

    trust between authorities and departments in the Member States, as well as between

    decision-makers, since such mutual trust is the basis for efficient cooperation in this field.

    With that in mind, the European Council recommends fostering a genuine European police

    culture and invites the Commission to establish a specific Erasmus-style exchange

    programme in this field.

    PRESS

    Rue de la Loi 175 B 1048 BRUSSELS Tel.: +32 (0)2 281 8239 / 6319 Fax: +32 (0)2 281 8026

    press.office@consilium.europa.eu http://www.consilium.europa.eu/Newsroom

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Recognising that:

    (5) The development of the area of freedom, security and justice was structured on the basis of

    concerted action by the Member States and institutions of the European Union founded

    wholly on the mutual trust called for in the Stockholm Programme. As far as police

    cooperation is concerned, it is necessary to take into account the fact that, since its creation in

    2000, CEPOL has been promoting this climate of mutual trust by bringing together senior

    police officers with a view to facilitating cross-border cooperation on combating crime and

    maintaining public order and security.

    (6) Similarly, the continuation of specific programmes inspired by Erasmus for border guards and

    customs officers is an essential factor if a common professional approach to protection of

    external borders is to be fostered among them.

    (7) An area of freedom, security and justice for the benefit of citizens presupposes the existence

    of national players who are aware of the transnational dimension of the current threats to the

    principles which underpin that area, as well as of human resources better equipped to tackle

    them. In this context, the training aspects are of major importance.

Agreeing on the following:

    (8) Without prejudice to the Member States' competence in drawing up and developing the

    respective training plans for police officers, it is understood that the development of police

    cooperation on combating crime should go hand-in-hand with increased cooperation on police

    training, which should be organised on the basis of enhanced mobility, mutual learning and

    the exchange of experiences and good practices.

    (9) Mobility is a factor which helps strengthen mutual trust between law enforcement personnel

    in the Member States; this is necessary for combating jointly and efficiently the threats

    currently hanging over citizens' security. The evaluations of the EU's education and training

    programmes, including in particular the Erasmus programme, show that mobility breaks down

    barriers between people and groups, makes the advantages of European citizenship more

    tangible and helps people to be more flexible and open in developing their career.

    (10) Police cooperation between the Member States is already sufficiently developed to allow and

    recommend that a step forward be taken and that national law enforcement structures be

    opened up to new models by using the experience gained by the European Union in other

    areas of training in order to ensure mutual trust and deeper cooperation through language

    learning and the exchange of knowledge and best practices.

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    1, as Union body specialised in police training, should eventually be responsible for (11) CEPOL

    managing Union exchange programmes regarding training for all police officers, whether high ranked, middle or basis ranked police officers and police students as well as police experts and training staff. With this goal the Council Decision 2005/681/JHA establishing CEPOL should be amended as appropriate.

    INVITES THE EUROPEAN POLICE COLLEGE (CEPOL):

    - To develop an exchange programme for police officers inspired by Erasmus in accordance with Article 7(g) of the CEPOL Decision, according to the following features:

    ; The programme should initially cover a four-year period.

    ; The aim of the programme, which is intended for all agents and officials in police

    departments in the Member States, is to conduct exchanges for the purposes of study,

    mutual learning and the pooling of knowledge and best practices in police work.

    ; The ultimate aim of these exchanges is to improve, on the basis of adequate target

    recipients, the efficiency of the work and the effectiveness of national administrations

    in connection with the strengthening of the European Union as an area of freedom,

    security and justice; to promote mobility and mutual trust between law enforcement

    departments, to promote the European dimension in police work and to be able to

    assess and demonstrate the benefits of the exchanges in increasing the transference of

    knowledge and mobility.

    ; In drawing up and implementing the exchange programme, CEPOL should study the

    possibility to take into account existing initiatives also to apply the Bologna-related

    criteria in police training, as well as Frontex and Customs training projects.

    ; CEPOL should also take into account its experiences with earlier exchange

    programmes financed by AGIS and ISEC.

    - To present, in the framework of the 5 year-evaluation provided for in Article 21 of the CEPOL Decision, an evaluation report of this programme to the Council.

     1 OJ, L 265, 1.10.2005, p. 63.

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    - When continuing the exchange programme inspired by Erasmus after the four year

    programme period lessons learnt should be taken on board, as well as, the following elements:

    ; The possible complementarity of the Exchange Programme for police officers inspired

    by Erasmus and based on the action programme in the field of lifelong learning 2 established by Decision 1720/2006/EC.

    ; CEPOL's management of the Exchange Programme for police officers inspired by

    Erasmus.

    ; The establishment of a general framework allowing for the adoption of voluntary

    agreements between the competent authorities responsible for police training centres

    in the Member States.

    ; The possibility of establishing an equivalence system for the various training activities

    and, in this connection, existing initiatives also to apply the Bologna-related criteria in

    police training.

    ; Existing Frontex and Customs training projects.

    - To enlarge the scope of the programme to all ranked police officers and police students in

    accordance with any future new provisions of an amended CEPOL Decision once this

    amended Decision has entered into force.

INVITES THE COMMISSION:

    - To examine as soon as possible and at the latest by the end of June 2012 the financial

    implications of a possible legislative proposal to enlarge the scope of activity of CEPOL as

    appropriate in order to allow this body to manage and financially support this exchange

    programme for police officers of all levels as well as police students and present the findings

    to the Governing Board of CEPOL which is invited to inform the Council thereof.

    - Without prejudice to the provisions of Article 76 TFEU, to consider, based on the outcome of

    the above-mentioned evaluation, tabling a legislative proposal to amend the CEPOL Decision

    as appropriate.".

    _________________

     2 OJ L 327, 24.11.2006, p. 45.

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