16 Jul

The informal Council meeting of the home affairs ministers, organized by the Slovenian Presidency of the Council of the European Union, was held in Brdo (Slovenia) on 15 July 2021, at which Hungary was represented by Deputy Prime Minister Sándor Pintér, Minister of Interior.

With the participation of the EU JHA agencies, Member States held a debate on the implications of artificial intelligence for the law enforcement sector and the opportunities of fighting crime in a digital age. In his contribution, Minister Sándor Pintér emphasized that criminals adapting to a virtual environment without geographical constraints are becoming more prepared. He also outlined that the success of the measures against those criminals can be achieved by ensuring technological superiority, cooperation, sharing data on a mutual basis and elaborating joint trainings, to which the European Police College (CEPOL) - established in Budapest - could contribute. The achievements in the field of technology and innovation must also be followed by the legislative framework, for which the 20-year-old Budapest Cybercrime Convention provides an excellent foundation.

The Presidency provided information on the Brdo Process (established in 2010 bringing together the countries of the Western Balkans) Ministerial Meeting, held on 10 June 2021, stressing the need for the countries of the region to develop effective cooperation with the European Union in the field of migration and internal security.

Over the working lunch, home affairs ministers reviewed options for taking forward negotiations on the EU Pact on Migration and Asylum. Maintaining its previous position, Hungary emphasized that migration-related issues could only be agreed by consensus, adopting the relevant legislative proposals as a package. Mandatory relocation is not a viable solution to stop illegal migration, but border protection and cooperation with third countries provides the right answers.

Member States discussed the proposals for the practical implementation of the recently presented EU Schengen Strategy. The Schengen area without borders represents one of the greatest achievements of the EU integration, but it has faced a number of challenges in recent years. At the conference, Sándor Pintér emphasized: Hungary consistently supports the proper functioning of the Schengen area. Maintaining internal border controls cannot be a solution to the challenges that arise at European level, and an area without internal borders is inconceivable without the proper control of the external borders.