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The “attacks” debriefing is on the Commission's agenda. New ?

(B2) The meeting of June 21 of the European Commission was the scene of a rather symbolic debriefing. According to our information, European Commissioner Julian King, who is in charge of the fight against terrorism, wanted to inform his colleagues (at the request of President JC Juncker) “ last known elements » on the attempted attack at Brussels central station. He detailed all the elements in his knowledge – notably coming from IntCen, the EU intelligence analysis center – such as the reaction of the police.

The 'terrorism' debriefing, a certain novelty

In a national government, it is a notable practice for an interior minister to report. At the European level, this was not the case until now, unless there was a significant political necessity (for example following the attacks on world trade center in 2001 or Madrid in 2004) or within the framework of security or diplomatic structures (at the EEAS or within the Council of the EU). For an “ordinary” attack attempt, which resulted in neither victims nor other consequences, this was not the case until now. Even less so in a “civil” institution like the European Commission. It is true that this attempt concerns, first and foremost, the European institutions, since it is located in Brussels, a few hundred meters from the European institutions, like the March 2016 attack on the Maelbeek metro which, certainly, caused awareness of the danger to many European agents and civil servants, more than all the television reports.

Awareness of the exchange of information

Basically, the interesting point of this intervention by the Commissioner concerns the exchange of information. Contrary to what is often said, “ the exchange of information between the police services of the Member States has made great progress in recent times said Julian King to his colleagues. A progression due to an awareness “ a change in attitude linked to the awareness of having to face together the same terrorist threat ».


Nicolas Gros Verheyde

Chief editor of the B2 site. Graduated in European law from the University of Paris I Pantheon Sorbonne and listener to the 65th session of the IHEDN (Institut des Hautes Etudes de la Défense Nationale. Journalist since 1989, founded B2 - Bruxelles2 in 2008. EU/NATO correspondent in Brussels for Sud-Ouest (previously West-France and France-Soir).