15 May 2021
Like the proposal of the European Commission to recast the Return Directive,7 the proposal for a new Frontex Regulation had its origin in the June 2018 European Council Conclusions.8 The European Council stressed the need for Member States to ensure the control of the EU’s external borders and the need to significantly step up the return of irregular migrants. [...] This includes reporting on the activities of the Agency, the implementation and monitoring of the Fundamental Rights Strategy, the annual activity report of the Agency for the previous year, the work programme for the following year and the Agency’s multiannual programming and any other matter related to the activities of the Agency. [...] ECRE further recommends that, to improve the independence of the mechanism, the FRO should have a formal role in the decisions on the merits of the complaints, should be able to carry out fact-finding, also via the fundamental rights monitors, and be able to issue a binding recommendation to the ED on the findings and the follow up for the Agency.58 As of December 2020, all the complaints submitte. [...] Upon closing the case, the ED should inform the FRO and the CF of the closure of the case and of the final decision resulting from the investigations (Art. [...] This creates a gap, as the FRO does not receive the reports from the duty officer when they are not considered “incidents involving the use of force.” Art.9(4) of the Decision 7/2021 remedies this shortcoming: the FRO should inform the MB and the ED about any diverging conclusions of her/his investigations and the conclusions of the verification by the duty officer.