11th National Selection Conference of the European Youth Parliament Ukraine
Committee on Security and Defence
Chairperson: Jakub TARATUTA (PL)
In the light of recent terrorist attacks in Stockholm and London, European officials remain concerned about the potential for "lone wolf" attacks. What should the EU do to preserve the security of its Member States?

Stockholm attacks: 7 April 2017, truck dashes through a pedestrian area, 5 dead, 15 injured, Furthermore, an unused bomb is found in the truck.

London attacks: 22 March 2017, after a car dashed through the pedestrian area on the Westminster Bridge, thereby killing 4 and injuring 49 people, the attacker left the car, stabbed a police officer to dead and was himself shot dead.

Definition of "lone wolf": somebody unsuspected who is in a "non-war zone", but gets inspired by extremist ideology to commit an act of terrorism. Often these terrorist attacks are meant to spread fear, as they occur in "peaceful areas" where an attack is unexpected and thus shocks people.


Main conflict:

The need to ensure the population's safety

Letting people kill other people is not very nice

Attacks are seen as an attack on "Western values" and the "Western lifestyle"


Need to protect individual privacy

You can't just randomly mass-surveille people without them actually having committed a crime yet


Possible aspects of the topic (and potential approaches to them):

  • Noting that social media is a tool for ISIS to reach/recruit potential lone wolf terrorists

    • → Push for more surveillance

    • → OR: push for more cooperation of national and european intelligence agencies

  • Noting the problem of badly integrated individuals and parallel societies

    • → Integrate them better so that they aren't receptive to extremist ideas anymore

    • → OR tackle down on foreigners

  • Note problems/consequences of xenophobia which serves ISIS as a reason to recruit more people.


Measures in place to monitor potentially dangerous people:

Schengen Information System (SIS):
The SIS enables the police, border guards and visa issuing and migration authorities to enter and check alerts on third-country citizens. If they pose a threat, the authorities can refuse the individual's entry into or stay in the Schengen Area.

European Travel Information and Authorisation System (ETIAS): The European Commission will set up an automated system that would gather information on visa-exempt travellers prior to their arrival, in order to determine any irregular migration, security or public-health risks associated with them. The travellers will have to sign up online beforehand which allows for time to check for any alerts on them.

While the SIS works well and the introduction of ETIAS has generally been noted with approval, they only tracks foreigners entering the EU, but not EU residents. As long as the designated lone wolfs don't leave the country, they can't be tracked (unless through surveillance due to an earlier crime committed by the person which justifies the surveillance.
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