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Citizen Protection Min: "Europe needs to re-examine approach to terrorism"

Europe needs to "redesign" its entire approach to dealing with terrorism, Greece's Alternate Citizen Protection Minister Nikos Toskas said on Thursday as he arrived for an EU Extraordinary Justice and Home Affairs Council.

"We are coming here today firstly to express our condolences to the Belgian people and the families of the victims. We are coming to show our solidarity in the struggle against terrorism," Toskas said, while at the same time noting that the tactics adopted until now had not brought results.
"I think it is time to redesign the entire effort to combat terrorism, one that is based on social aims and not contrary to social aims. Isolation until now has not given anything. There has to be a redesign, a re-examination of the method for tackling terrorism, to which we are all naturally opposed," Toskas added.
With respect to creating a European-wide record of airline passenger data (Passenger Name Record - PNR) and the exchange of information, the minister said Greece supported its adoption and said that "these measures, these technical measures for protecting travellers and passengers must be taken".
Asked about the negative reactions of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees and NGOs to the EU-Turkey agreement on migration, Toskas said that Greek authorities were working with all NGOs and the UNHCR, because they goals of accepting refugees and migrants was shared "but under specific rules".
"This is the proper time to declare that we have to combine the democratic values and freedom in Europe with security in a balanced way. Historically this balance was achieved and this specific period the fear has to be confronted by these values," the minister said in a brief statement on his arrival in English.
He underlined that the external borders in Greece were controlled and that despite the continued big flows of refugees, they were all being screened and identified according to the proper European rules.

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