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[Luxembourg 2005 Presidency of the Council of the European Union]
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Press Release
Agreement on a policy for the retention of telecommunications data

Date of release : 02-06-2005

Policy area : Justice and Home Affairs Justice and Home Affairs

Event : Justice and Home Affairs Council

As part of the fight against terrorism and organised crime, the European Ministers for Justice met in Luxembourg on 2 June in the "Justice and Home Affairs" Council, chaired by Luc Frieden, Luxembourg’s Minister for Justice, and they reached an agreement on a policy in regards to the draft framework decision on the retention of data processed and stored by telecommunications services providers. This framework decision seeks to facilitate judicial cooperation in the criminal area by aligning the legislations of the Member States. The key questions raised during the discussions were: the list of the data to be kept, the amount of time the data are kept, and the legal basis for the instrument.

A broad consensus emerged on the "step-by-step" approach presented by the Luxembourg Presidency. For Luc Frieden, "that does not mean that all telecommunications data should not be included immediately." First of all, the Council should start with fixed telephone lines and mobile telephones. As for the Internet and calls not completed, the representatives of the Member States agreed on a transitional period to take into account problems that some national providers may encounter in implementing this type of retention. The Member States want to prevent these providers from incurring costs that are no longer in proportion to the Council’s objective.

At the press conference, Luc Frieden stressed that "despite the problems, we have made progress. All the Member States agree on the necessity for a data retention instrument to prevent and effectively control certain types of organised crime."

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This page was last modified on : 02-06-2005

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