Area of ​​freedom, security and justice

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Area of ​​Freedom, Security and Justice: States that fully participate in blue. Great Britain and Ireland have an opt-out with the possibility of opt-in on a case-by-case basis. Denmark has a general opt-out.

The area of ​​freedom, security and justice is a political concept of the European Union that goes back to the cooperation in the area of ​​justice and home affairs and from the areas of judicial cooperation in civil matters , judicial cooperation in criminal matters , police cooperation and policy in the area of ​​border control, Asylum and immigration exist.


In the course of progressive integration, it became clear that the internal market and freedom of movement in particular can pose a threat to the member states and their citizens. Particular mention should be made of cross-border crime , uncontrolled migration , but also the problem of deliberately playing off individual national legal systems against one another.

In response to this, with the Maastricht Treaty in 1992 , the member states expanded their political cooperation to include the policy fields of justice and home affairs. These formed the so-called third pillar of the EU . This was strongly intergovernmental : decisions could only be made unanimously by all member states in the Council of the EU , the European Parliament had no say. In detail, this 3rd pillar comprised the following areas:

With the Amsterdam Treaty of 1997, all these measures are grouped under the heading of the area of ​​freedom, security and justice , and this concept has been expressly promoted to the rank of an objective of the Union. At the same time, with the Treaty of Amsterdam, the JZZ and the accompanying measures for the free movement of persons were transferred from the intergovernmental 3rd pillar of the EU to the supranational 1st pillar (" communitized "), so that now in the co-decision procedure (with a majority decision in the Council and a say for the European Parliament ). The Lisbon Treaty , which came into force on December 1, 2009, now provides for the PJZS to be communitized within the policy areas of judicial cooperation in criminal matters and police cooperation . The earlier “3. Pillar "is dissolved and decisions on home affairs and justice policy in the EU are now generally made in accordance with the ordinary legislative procedure , which corresponds to the co-decision procedure. At the same time, the "accompanying measures for the free movement of persons" were renamed to policy in the field of border controls, asylum and immigration .

Great Britain , Ireland and Denmark have very limited contributions to justice and home affairs policies due to additional protocols.

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