Three New Committees at EP
Following a proposal by the Conference of Presidents, the European Parliament set up three new committees:
- A committee of inquiry to look into the Pegasus spyware;
- A special committee to look into malicious foreign interference;
- A special committee to look into the European response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Starting from their constitutive meetings, the three new committees will have twelve months to compile their recommendations.
The “Committee of inquiry to investigate the use of the Pegasus and equivalent surveillance spyware” will look into the use of the surveillance software by Member States and investigate whether the spyware was used for political purposes. The Parliament wants to investigate alleged breaches or maladministration in the implementation of EU law. It will consist of 38 members. Its term of office is twelve months and can be extended twice by three-month periods (see Rule 208 of the Rules of Procedure of the EP).
The “Special Committee on Foreign Interference in all Democratic Processes in the European Union, including Disinformation II” will have a look at existing and planned EU legislation in order to find loopholes that could be exploited by third countries for malicious purposes. It will continue the work of its homonymous predecessor. The committee will have 33 members. Its term of office is limited to 12 months, which can be extended by Parliament before the period expires (see Rule 207 of the Rules of Procedure of the EP).
The Special Committee on “COVID-19 pandemic: lessons learned and recommendations for the future” will take a close look into the European response to the pandemic in the areas of health, democracy and fundamental rights, economy and society, and the EU’s global relationships. The committee will consist of 38 members. Its term of office is limited to 12 months, which can be extended by Parliament before the period expires (see said Rule 207 of the Rules of Procedure of the EP).