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*Law of Aliens

Published on January 26th, 2017 | by Elpida Tsiaka

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2017 EU Citizenship Report: Commission promotes rights, values and democracy

On Tuesday 24 January, 2017, the European Commission published its third EU Citizenship Report taking stock of progress since 2014 and further presenting actions to ensure citizens can fully enjoy their rights when working, travelling, studying or participating in elections. Europeans are more than ever aware of their status as citizens of the Union and the proportion of Europeans wanting to know more about their rights continues to increase. Over four out of five Europeans cherish, in particular, the right to free movement that allows them to live, work, study and do business anywhere in the EU (December 2016 Eurobarometer). However, a lack of awareness means EU citizens do not fully exercise their right to vote in European and local elections and many are unaware of the right to consular protection, for instance.

Věra Jourová, Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality, responsible for EU citizenship rights, said: “87% of Europeans are aware of their EU citizenship, which is more than ever before, but they are not always aware of the rights that come with EU citizenship. (…) We want to empower citizens to know more about their EU rights and use them more easily.”

Dimitris Avramopoulos, Commissioner for Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship: “The European Union exists for the European citizens and through them. To ensure that EU citizens can fully enjoy their rights and freedoms in times of increasing globalisation and transnational challenges, we are committed to continuing our work on strengthening security within the EU and by stepping up the protection of our common external borders.”
The 2017 EU Citizenship Report sets out the Commission’s priorities in further raising awareness of these rights and making them easier to use in practice. It will for instance organise an EU-wide information campaign on EU citizenship rights, strengthen voluntary engagement through the European Solidarity Corps or intensify Citizens ‘dialogues.

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