Academic journal article Romanian Journal of European Affairs

Internal Security Cooperation under Functional Expectations: Initial Law Enforcement Europeanization - Case of Finland and Estonia

Academic journal article Romanian Journal of European Affairs

Internal Security Cooperation under Functional Expectations: Initial Law Enforcement Europeanization - Case of Finland and Estonia

Article excerpt

Introduction

The European Union (EU) has been in a permanent transition and probably never more than during the first turbulent decade of the 21st century with its challenging enlargements, deepening of the monetary and economic integration, the widening of the Schengen area and struggling with new immigration flows. Currently, the EU is facing the greatest contemporary migration crisis that will likely change the internal security system of the Union. The problem of illegal immigration, including that of cross-border organized human trafficking, is far from being new to the EU, but the increasingly forming pressure is becoming a source of more opinionated positions and thereby nurturing potential radicalism.

Effective management of transition requires both a high degree of cooperation based on mutual trust to shape collective action at the EU level, based on appropriate resources, including common value resources, political will and institutional capabilities. Contemporary security challenges are mostly cross-border and cross-sectorial. Thus, the future of the Union's internal security domain is mainly a matter of effective cooperation in preventing and fighting serious organised crime, terrorism and cybercrime, strengthening the integrated management of the external border and protection of critical infrastructure.2 The ongoing crisis has highlighted the need for more active cooperation of the EU internal security and law enforcement bodies and competent national authorities to prevent, detect and stop transnational illegal networks. Operational cooperation should also be targeted even more towards the external dimension, in order to break the networks of crossborder smuggling. Increasing security challenges give some extra functional pressures to national governments for more effective transnational and supranational cooperation. The EU's efforts on matters of internal security have recently been focused more on operationalizing the existing instruments and intensifying the use of cooperation tools. The main innovation since the start of the ambitious Stockholm Program (2010) is the EU policy cycle on serious and organised crime, developed through the Standing Committee on Operational Cooperation on Internal Security (COSI). At the same time, some critical debates on state sovereignty and EU internal security integration have also been raised (see Bigo, 2008a, 2008b; Burgess, 2009) since policing and law enforcement have been carefully guarded features of traditional sovereignty. So, the constructivist approach to re-define the common security space needs to be re-vitalized to meet the functional expectations and find some further appropriate governance tools.

The adoption of the Lisbon Treaty (TFEU) opened a challenging chapter for the promotion of more supranational actions in EU law enforcement cooperation. The policy context of so-called Lisbonization highlights the call for the European model for Justice and Home Affairs (JHA) and Area of Freedom, Security and Justice (AFSJ) with appropriate operationalization of cooperation tools. Thus, the Stockholm Programme (2010) turns a lot of attention to the development of trust and common culture, stating that mutual trust is essential to make some 'real progress' in the EU, JHA/AFSJ, that also requires the establishment of minimum standards and understanding of the different judicial traditions and methods of the EU Member States (also MS).3 Thus, the governments' activities should be examined from the point of view of national implementation of the EU cooperation principles and law as aspects of Europeanization.

There are some important aspects in characterizing to what extent law enforcement has been transformed in line with EU legislation and principles when analysed to the deepened understanding of whether the respective discursive practices under transitional adaptation pressure have become more European. From that position the study addresses the following questions: (i) how the implementation of the EU provisions on police cooperation manifests into guidance within respective authorities, and (ii) how the implementation of the EU provisions on internal security reflects on the operational level. …

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