Press release
Ministry of the Interior
15.3.2007 13.17

Finnish Government proposes ratification of the Treaty of Prüm to step up cross-border security cooperation

The Government today, on 15 March, submitted a proposal that the President of the Republic should decide on Finland's accession to the Treaty of Prüm on the stepping up of cross-border cooperation, particularly in combating terrorism, cross-border crime and illegal migration. The Government also proposes that the President approve the bill on the implementation of the provisions of a legislative nature in the Treaty and certain other legislative amendments relating to the Treaty. Amendments will be made to such acts as the Firearms Act, the Police Act, the Penal Code and the Aliens Act.

The Treaty of Prüm, signed on 27 May 2005, is a convention between seven EU Member States, namely Belgium, Germany, Spain, France, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Austria. Of the first signatory States, Germany, Spain and Austria are currently the only ones applying it. Finland is the first EU Member State to join the Treaty since it was signed by the above-mentioned seven countries in 2005.

The Treaty of Prüm relates partly to the cooperation agreed and carried out by Member States under the Hague Programme and is open for all EU Member States to join.

The Treaty helps to create, for instance, the basis for improving the exchange of information between the law enforcement authorities of the contracting States. The exchange ofinformation under the Treaty covers only the information that can be stored under the existing Finnish legislation.

The key principles and forms of cooperation laid down in the Treaty of Prüm are taken into account when Member States negotiate the implementation of the principle of availability, which will facilitate access to information for law enforcement authorities. By acceding to the Treaty, Finland will be able to contribute to the development of this cooperation. At EU level, preliminary steps are being taken to introduce the Treaty into EU legislation.

For further information, please contact Director-General Antti Pelttari, tel. +358 9 160 42290, Deputy National Police Commissioner Kimmo Hakonen, tel. +358 9 160 42875, or Inspector General of the Police Marja Kartila, tel. +358 9 160 42850