The European Parliament’s new 30-member Special Committee on Counter Terrorism chose its chair, vice-chairs and co-rapporteurs in Strasbourg on September 14.

Nathalie Griesbeck (ALDE, FR) was appointed chair, along with four vice-chairs: Elena Valenciano (S&D, ES), Judith Sargentini (Greens/EFA, NL), Jeroen Leaners (EPP, NL) and Geoffrey Van Orden (ECR, UK).

The committee’s task is to assess the extent of the terrorist threat on European soil, highlight any potential faults, deficiencies and gaps in counter-terrorism measures, and recommend solutions.

The committee’s mandate, which was approved during the July 6 plenary session, will run for a period of 12 months. According to a European Parliament press release, it will focus on how external border management measures are implemented, as well as deficiencies in sharing judicial, law enforcement and intelligence information among member state. It will also assess the interoperability of European information-sharing databases, and the impact of EU anti-terror laws on fundamental rights.

Other issues covered include the radicalisation and the effectiveness of de-radicalisation programmes, money laundering and terrorism financing, including its links to organised crime, and best practices for protecting soft targets and critical infrastructure, such as airports and train stations.

The committee will schedule hearings with other EU institutions, the Europol law enforcement cooperation agency, the national parliaments and governments of member states and non-EU countries, law enforcement agencies, intelligence services, judges and magistrates and victims’ organisations.

It is to deliver a mid-term and a final report containing factual findings and recommendations.