EP to monitor corruption, media freedom – Slovakia among targets

The European Parliament established a monitoring group to continue the activities of ad hoc inspections scrutinising the murders of one Maltese and one Slovak journalist.

Illustrative stock photoIllustrative stock photo (Source: TASR)

MEPs are set to more intensively monitor the rule of law’s state in European Union member states in the next few months, particularly corruption and media freedom, according to a June 5 statement by the EP’s Civil Liberties Committee (LIBE), which set up this Rule of Law Monitoring Group (ROLMG).

What is the aim of the workgroup?

The Rule of Law monitoring group headed by Dutch MEP Sophia in't Veld will also focus on the progress made in the investigation into the murder of Slovak investigative journalist Ján Kuciak, the TASR newswire wrote on the same day, citing the statement. ROLMG will take a closer look at the murder of Maltese journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia, murdered in autumn 2017, as well.

The aim of the new monitoring group is to give full support to all efforts to seek justice and make sure that the rule of law is observed.

The European Parliament is concerned with the lack of progress in the investigation of these two murders in both countries as well as repeated claims about harassment and threats to journalists and increasing corruption accusations of corruption and frauds. The new monitoring group is to offer full support for efforts to achieve justice and secure the principles of rule of law, the SITA newswire wrote.

Composition and mandate of ROLMG

Other members of the ROLMG incude – apart from its chairperson Sophie in‘t Veld (ALDE, NL) – Roberta Metsola (EPP, MT), Josef Weidenholzer (S&D, AT), Judith Sargentini (Zelení/EFA, NL), Laura Ferrara (EFDD, IT) and Auke Zijlstra (ENF, NL). The ECR and GUE/NGL groups have so far not nominated their members.

The mandate of the group, to expire on December 31, enables it to organise hearings and formal meetings as well as send MEPs for study trips. The group is expected to continuously inform the whole EP on its activities, and to file a draft resolution at the end of its work, Ján Jakubov, of the EP representation in Slovakia, informed SITA.

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