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29.10.2012   MEP Zdanoka's speech on EU citizenship report 2010 (29 March 2012)

Tatjana Ždanoka, rapporteur for the opinion of the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs.
– Mr President, first of all, my congratulations to Ms Vălean on her excellent work. It is regrettable that the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs found themselves split into two equal parts when voting on their opinion for the Committee on Petitions. I, as rapporteur, the shadow rapporteurs and the advisers have worked a lot in order to propose a modern approach to the issue. Despite the failure of an opinion due to the final vote, I am satisfied that a number of important proposals were supported by the majority of the members of the Civil Liberties Committee and these are as follows.

The right of Union citizens to move and reside freely within the territory of the Member States cannot be viewed in isolation from other rights and basic principles of the European Union, such as the freedom to provide services, respect for family life and social rights, as well as the mutual recognition of degrees and professional qualifications.

We also urge the Commission to further its analysis of the situation of inter-EU migrants and to take appropriate action to ensure that they genuinely enjoy rights as Union citizens without discriminatory barriers. We call upon the Commission to urge the Member States to systematically bring about a just solution to the situation of stateless persons permanently residing in Member States.

Tatjana Ždanoka (Verts/ALE ).
– Mr President, I am now speaking as a member of the Committee on Petitions and as an MEP from Latvia. I want to remind you of the petitions on the voting rights of non-citizens permanently residing in the Member States.

These petitions were not reflected in the report since they were examined either after 2010, in the case of the Estonian petitions, or before 2010 for the Latvian petitions. But I want to contest here, in the presence of the Commissioner, the position of the Commission and also the explanation just provided by Mr Busuttil that the problem of statelessness and deprivation of basic rights is not within the competences of the European Union. I think that it is within the competence of the European Union because it is discrimination on the basis of origin, which is prohibited by the Charter of Fundamental Rights.


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