New EU Directive 2017/541 on Combating Terrorism published at Official Journal

On 31 March 2017, the Official Journal of the EU has published Directive (EU) 2017/541 of 15 March 2017 on combating terrorism and replacing Council Framework Decision 2002/475/JAH and amending Council Decision 2005/671/JHA.

Paragraphs (31) to (33) of the Directive, related to the increasing risks posed by radicalization and the need to adopt a multidisciplinary approach in this field, are as follows:

  1. As reflected in the revised EU Strategy for Combating Radicalisation and Recruitment to Terrorism of 2014 and in the Conclusions of the Council of the European Union and of the Member States meeting within the Council on enhancing the criminal justice response to radicalisation leading to terrorism and violent extremism of 2015, prevention of radicalisation and recruitment to terrorism, including radicalisation online, requires a long-term, proactive and comprehensive approach. Such approach should combine measures in the area of criminal justice with policies in the fields of education, social inclusion and integration, as well as the provision of effective deradicalisation or disengagement and exit or rehabilitation programmes, including in the prison and probation context. Member States should share good practices on effective measures and projects in this field, in particular as regards foreign terrorist fighters as well as returnees, where appropriate in cooperation with the Commission and the relevant Union agencies and bodies.
  2. Member States should pursue their efforts to prevent and counter radicalisation leading to terrorism by coor­ dinating, by sharing information and experience on national prevention policies, and by implementing or, as the case may be, updating national prevention policies taking into account their own needs, objectives and capabilities building on their own experiences. The Commission should, where appropriate, provide support to national, regional and local authorities in developing prevention policies.
  3. Member States should, depending on the relevant needs and particular circumstances in each Member State, provide support to professionals, including civil society partners likely to come in contact with persons vulnerable to radicalisation. Such support measures may include, in particular, training and awareness-raising measures aimed at enabling them to identify and address signs of radicalisation. Such measures should, where appropriate, be taken in cooperation with private companies, relevant civil society organisations, local communities and other stake­ holders.