The European Union will implement new regulations to make it mandatory to share the names of people that have travel bans on them with other member states.
The measures come in the wake of the Paris attacks where known terrorists were able to travel in and out of France before and after the attacks. The Schengen Agreement allows free movement within 26 countries that share a database of information on foreign fighters, but not domestic.
“We are working to reach an agreement before the end of the year,” Dimitris Avramopoulos, the European commissioner for migration and home affairs, said at a press conference Wednesday. “I am certain that we share with both the European Parliament and the Council the view that we have no time to lose.”
Belgian authorities were aware of some of the Paris suspects made repeated trips to France in the weeks leading up to the attack, but didn’t find it necessary to inform French authorities. (RELATED: Belgian Authorities Knew Everything About Paris Terror Suspects, Didn’t Act)
“Even if we had signaled them to France, I doubt that we could have stopped them,” Eric Van Der Sypt, a spokesman for the Belgian federal prosecutor’s office, told Politico.
The EU will also move toward shared information of firearms and stricter background checks to make sure guns don’t end up in the hands of terrorists.
“The adoption of the firearms package today is proof of the Commission’s determination to address the new reality we are confronted with,” Avramopolous said in a statement Wednesday. “We need to remove regulatory divergences across the EU by imposing stricter, harmonized EU standards for firearms and ensuring efficient exchange of information between Member States.”
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