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Eurodac
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Recitals

32000R2725

Council Regulation (EC) No 2725/2000 of 11 December 2000 concerning the establishment of Eurodac for the comparison of fingerprints for the effective application of the Dublin Convention

Official Journal L 316 , 15/12/2000 P. 0001 - 0010


Council Regulation (EC) No 2725/2000

of 11 December 2000

concerning the establishment of Eurodac for the comparison of fingerprints for the effective application of the Dublin Convention

THE COUNCIL OF THE EUROPEAN UNION,

Having regard to the Treaty establishing the European Community, and in particular Article 63 point (1)(a) thereof,

Having regard to the proposal from the Commission,

Having regard to the opinion of the European Parliament(1),

Whereas:

  1. Member States have ratified the Geneva Convention of 28 July 1951, as amended by the New York Protocol of 31 January 1967, relating to the Status of Refugees.
  2. Member States have concluded the Convention determining the State responsible for examining applications for asylum lodged in one of the Member States of the European Communities, signed in Dublin on 15 June 1990 (hereinafter referred to as the Dublin Convention)(2).
  3. For the purposes of applying the Dublin Convention, it is necessary to establish the identity of applicants for asylum and of persons apprehended in connection with the unlawful crossing of the external borders of the Community. It is also desirable, in order effectively to apply the Dublin Convention, and in particular points (c) and (e) of Article 10(1) thereof, to allow each Member State to check whether an alien found illegally present on its territory has applied for asylum in another Member State.
  4. Fingerprints constitute an important element in establishing the exact identity of such persons. It is necessary to set up a system for the comparison of their fingerprint data.
  5. To this end, it is necessary to set up a system known as Eurodac, consisting of a Central Unit, to be established within the Commission and which will operate a computerised central database of fingerprint data, as well as of the electronic means of transmission between the Member States and the central database.
  6. It is also necessary to require the Member States promptly to take fingerprints of every applicant for asylum and of every alien who is apprehended in connection with the irregular crossing of an external border of a Member State, if they are at least 14 years of age.
  7. It is necessary to lay down precise rules on the transmission of such fingerprint data to the Central Unit, the recording of such fingerprint data and other relevant data in the central database, their storage, their comparison with other fingerprint data, the transmission of the results of such comparison and the blocking and erasure of the recorded data. Such rules may be different for, and should be specifically adapted to, the situation of different categories of aliens.
  8. Aliens who have requested asylum in one Member State may have the option of requesting asylum in another Member State for many years to come. Therefore, the maximum period during which fingerprint data should be kept by the Central Unit should be of considerable length. Given that most aliens who have stayed in the Community for several years will have obtained a settled status or even citizenship of a Member State after that period, a period of ten years should be considered a reasonable period for the conservation of fingerprint data.
  9. The conservation period should be shorter in certain special situations where there is no need to keep fingerprint data for that length of time. Fingerprint data should be erased immediately once aliens obtain citizenship of a Member State.
  10. It is necessary to lay down clearly the respective responsibilities of the Commission, in respect of the Central Unit, and of the Member States, as regards data use, data security, access to, and correction of, recorded data.
  11. While the non-contractual liability of the Community in connection with the operation of the Eurodac system will be governed by the relevant provisions of the Treaty, it is necessary to lay down specific rules for the non-contractual liability of the Member States in connection with the operation of the system.
  12. In accordance with the principle of subsidiarity as set out in Article 5 of the Treaty, the objective of the proposed measures, namely the creation within the Commission of a system for the comparison of fingerprint data to assist the implementation of the Community's asylum policy, cannot, by its very nature, be sufficiently achieved by the Member States and can therefore be better achieved by the Community. In accordance with the principle of proportionality as set out in the said Article, this Regulation does not go beyond what is necessary to achieve that objective.
  13. Since the Member States alone are responsible for identifying and classifying the results of comparisons transmitted by the Central Unit as well as for the blocking of data relating to persons admitted and recognised as refugees and since this responsibility concerns the particularly sensitive area of the processing of personal data and could affect the exercise of individual freedoms, there are specific grounds for the Council reserving for itself the exercise of certain implementing powers, relating in particular to the adoption of measures ensuring the safety and reliability of such data.
  14. The measures necessary for the implementation of other measures of this Regulation should be adopted in accordance with Council Decision 1999/468/EC of 28 June 1999 laying down the procedures for the exercise of implementing powers conferred on the Commission(3).
  15. Directive 95/46/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 24 October 1995 on the protection of individuals with regard to the processing of personal data and on the free movement of such data(4) applies to the processing of personal data by the Member States within the framework of the Eurodac system.
  16. By virtue of Article 286 of the Treaty, Directive 95/46/EC also applies to Community institutions and bodies. Since the Central Unit will be established within the Commission, that Directive will apply to the processing of personal data by that Unit.
  17. The principles set out in Directive 95/46/EC regarding the protection of the rights and freedoms of individuals, notably their right to privacy, with regard to the processing of personal data should be supplemented or clarified, in particular as far as certain sectors are concerned.
  18. It is appropriate to monitor and evaluate the performance of Eurodac.
  19. Member States should provide for a system of penalties to sanction the use of data recorded in the central database contrary to the purpose of Eurodac.
  20. The United Kingdom and Ireland, in accordance with Article 3 of the Protocol on the position of the United Kingdom and Ireland annexed to the Treaty on European Union and the Treaty establishing the European Community, have given notice of their wish to take part in the adoption and application of this Regulation.
  21. Denmark, in accordance with Articles 1 and 2 of the Protocol on the position of Denmark annexed to the said Treaties, is not participating in the adoption of this Regulation and is therefore not bound by it nor subject to its application.
  22. It is appropriate to restrict the territorial scope of this Regulation so as to align it on the territorial scope of the Dublin Convention.
  23. This Regulation should serve as legal basis for the implementing rules which, with a view to its rapid application, are required for the establishment of the necessary technical arrangements by the Member States and the Commission. The Commission should be charged with verifying that those conditions are fulfilled,

    HAS ADOPTED THIS REGULATION: