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European Council conclusions, 17-18 December 2015

EU News 392/2015

European Council

At their meeting in December, EU leaders focused on migration topics, the fight against terrorism, the Five presidents' report on the Economic and Monetary Union, the completion of the single market, and the UK plans for the referendum. They also adopted conclusions on Syria.

In order to tackle the unprecedented flows of refugees in 2015, the EU has set out a comprehensive strategy and is fully engaged in solving the most pressing issues.
According to a report by the Luxembourg Presidency, implementation has been advancing rapidly in some areas, but significant gaps still remain.

On 17 December, the European Council took stock of the implementation of the decisions already taken and agreed to speed up actions on:

- the operation of hotspots
- the implementation of the relocation decisions and returns
- the control of the EU's external borders
- cooperation with countries of origin and transit

Referendum in the UK
In November Prime Minister Cameron set out the four areas where he is seeking reforms to address the concerns of the British people over UK membership of the European Union.
The European Council debated the UK plans for the referendum and agreed to find solutions in all the four areas at their February meeting.

Fight against terrorism
Following the terrorist attacks in Paris on 13 November 2015, the EU must step up even more its action against terrorism. The European Council discussed further actions in terms of:

- exchange of information and terrorism financing
- control at the external borders
- conditions leading to terrorism, the prevention of radicalisation and violent extremism
- counter terrorism cooperation with third countries


External relations
The European Council finished by adopting conclusions on Syria, Libya, and refugee funding.

Source and additional information:

European Council Shoot location: Brussels - BELGIUM Shoot date: 17/12/2015 Copyright: No commercial use. Credit 'The European Union' URL