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Civil society response to EU’s new counter-terrorism assessment and policy making

ECNL, jointly with partners, is leading the informal, European-wide civil society coalition that works on the impact of EU counter-terrorism policies and regulation affecting civil society. In a number of countries, as well as in the EU, measures and legislations developed to counter terrorism have sometimes curtailed civic space, especially for organizations working for the promotion of fundamental rights and social inclusion. This, in consequence, weakens the fight against terrorism and limits the rights of citizens.

In 2016/2017 the  European Commission is conducting an assessment of the risks of money laundering and terrorist financing affecting cross-border activities, including those of civil society organizations (CSOs). The focus is on the collection and transfer of funds. This assessment will result in recommendations to Member States on the measures suitable for addressing the identified risks. The Commission might be inclined to propose measures that may restrict or hamper nonprofit activities and cross-border philanthropy of EU-based organizations. ECNL is co-leading the efforts of civil society to raise awareness and participate in this process, providing input to the risk and vulnerability assessment, as well as to the proposal on potential new measures.  It is crucial to engage with the Commission, reject ill-founded assessments and request a rights-based and targeted approach that will safeguard civic space.

Read the submission from ECNL and partners here: