Background information: From an early stage, the JHA research unit of CEPS has closely monitored and critically commented on the development of the Treaty of Prüm. On 23 November 2006, the treaty entered into force between Austria, Spain and Germany, providing a good occasion to take yet another look at its content, the most pressing questions and the current state-of-play.
Abstract:The little towns of Schengen and Prüm lie only around a hundred kilometers away from each other. From an enlarged European angle, this distance is close to nothing. The geo-graphical proximity might be the reason why some are inclined to see the Prüm Treaty of 2005 – following the Schengen agreement of 1985 and its implementing convention of 1990 – as just another positive step in the right direction, towards closer European cooperation of police and judicial authorities in insecure times. ‘Schengen III’, in fact, is often used as an informal label for the Treaty of Prüm. This treaty however bears a fundamental flaw: that of restricted intergovernmentalism, which (potentially if not in reality) smacks of disloyalty within an integrated EU policy by a small group of influential member states.
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