Letter from President George W. Bush to Mr Romano Prodi, President, Commission of the European Communities
Forwarded by the Deputy Chief of Mission to the European Union, October 16, 2001.
UNITED STATES MISSION
TO THE EUROPEAN UNION
16 October 2001-10-26
Dear President Prodi,
I have the honour to transmit to you, from President Bush, a list of proposed actions that the European Union might undertake to help the United States in the international effort against terrorism. This letter is in response to the request made by Belgian Prime Minister Verhofstadt during the Summit meeting in Washington on 27 September. The list includes suggestions to intensify cooperation in the areas of terrorist financing, law enforcement, non-proliferation, border controls, transport security and multi-lateral/diplomatic support.
The US Government deeply appreciates the offer of the European Union to work closely with us against the scourge of terrorism, and hopes that this list will provide a good basis for futre discussion and cooperation.
James J Foster
Deputy Chief of Mission
Mr Romano Prodi,
Commission of the European Communities,
PROPOSALS FOR US-EU COUNTER-TERRORISM COOPERATION
Suppression of Terrorist Financing
- Share with the United States and among member and accession states, through established financial, intelligence and law enforcement channels, all possible information regarding financial activities or accounts of terrorists.
- Expand focus of Financial Action Task Force (FATF), and the Egmont Group of Financial Intelligence Units to include financial flows to terrorists.
- Implement fully UNSC Resolution 1333 targeted at the Taliban and UNSC Resolution 1373.
- Ratify the UN Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism.
- Adopt draft EU Directive on prevention of the use of the financial system for money laundering and the framework decision on the execution in the EU of orders freezing assets or evidence (the scope of which should be extended to terrorist related crimes).
- Block activities linked to terrorism within the framework of the draft EU Directive on insider trading currently under discussion in the EU Council.
- Reinforce exchange of information between financial intelligence units in EU member states to enhance ability to take preventative action against terrorism.
- Ask that future members (i.e. candidate countries, Association Agreement countries, others) undertake the above commitments now
- Provide assistance to candidate countries in setting up financial control and tracking systems to implement these commitments.
Police and Judicial Cooperation
- Authorize and encourage police authorities and local magistrates of member and accession states to deal directly with U.S. law enforcement authorities.
- Revise the EU draft framework decision on recognition of arrest warrants to eliminate discrimination against United State and third countries' extradition requests to member states.
- Mandate EU extradition of nationals for terrorist offences and urge member and accession states to remove remaining "political offense" defenses to extradition in terrorism cases.
- Explore alternatives to extradition including expulsion and deportation, where legally available and more efficient.
Mutual Legal Assistance
- Permit expedited access to critical bank records and other financial records in member states.
- Whenever possible, permit urgent MLAT requests to be made orally, with follow-up by formal written requests.
- Overcome dual criminality obstacles to the rendering of mutual legal assistance.
- Consider data protection issues in the context of law enforcement and counterterrorism imperatives.
- Establish adequate capabilities for investigating terrorism cases that involve the use of the internet.
- Revise draft privacy directives that call for mandatory destruction to permit the retention of critical data for a reasonable period.
- Make available to the United States all information, including information on individuals, that Europol may have on relevant terrorist cases, and susbsequently broaden such cooperation to other criminal cases.
- Encourage exchanges of information at both the bilateral and Europol level
- Share with U.S. authorities summaries of terrorism cases that are within the Provisional Eurojust Docket and updates thereto.
- Ensure that EU aspirants set up and enforce effective export control systems. (Cyprus and Malta are particularly problematic transshipment states.)
- Improve detection and prosecution of front companies and entities involved in the export or transshipment of sensitive items to countries, programs, and end-users of concern, and block related brokering activities.
- Put in place consistent catch-all controls to deny dual-use equipment to end-users in countries that harbor terrorists.
- Coordinate more closely with the United States on export control assistance to supplier countries, key transshipment states, and countries in the former Soviet Union.
- Participate with the United States in a program to enhance export and border controls in Central Asia.
- Increase EU assistance to Russia, the Newly Independent States, and other at-risk states to help control, protect, and account for sensitive chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear facilities and material.
- Increase EU voluntary contributions to the IAEA for its nuclear safeguards and material protection programs.
- Develop U.S.-EU cooperative measures to forestall intangible transfers of technology and expretise (inadvertent transfer of weapon-related knowledge through training, conferences, exchanges, etc.)
- Establish procedures to share information on immigration lookouts for individuals associated with terrorist organizations.
- Explore ways to strengthen transit procedures to combat terrorism.
- Coordinate external U.S.-EU cooperation projects in the area of border security.
- Coordinate U.S. and EU efforts to encourage other nations to utilize secure, machine-readable passports and visas and explore further use of biometrics.
- Inform the United States and other key partners when a breach of passport or visa security has been detected (especially when passport blanks are lost).
- Coordinate efforts to train airline or other appropriate personnel on false documents.
- Improve cooperation on the removal of status violators, criminals and inadmissibles.
Aviation, transport and security
- Ensure implementation of international aviation security measures imposed in the United States after September 11.
- Support the ICAO Assembly resolution on Airline Security currently being negotiated in Montreal, including a strong action plan to prevent, combat, and eradicate this new threat to civil aviation.
- Work with the United States in ICAO on ways to enhance aviation security and anti-terrorism measures in aviation.