In a letter to the European Commission, dated June 27, Seehofer warned Brussels that it’ll put EU citizens’ lives at risk with its unyielding approach to Brexit, that it hinders reaching an “unlimited” security deal with Britain.
According to the minister, “ensuring the security of citizens in Europe should take precedence over all the aspects of exit negotiations.”
“Weakening the European security architecture would affect all EU citizens and undermine their fundamental need for security. The ever present threat of cross-border terrorism shows the need for unlimited cooperation in future,” the letter continued.
Seehofer’s letter echoes UK Prime Minister Theresa May’s remarks at last week’s EU summit, when she noted that the Commission is putting people’s lives in jeopardy by restricting post-Brexit security cooperation.
Last month, Michel Barnier, the European Union’s chief Brexit negotiator, stated that Britain would lose EU security perks – it would be excluded from the European Arrest Warrant and EU crime databases; Europol policing agency and Schengen Information System which contain information about suspects and missing people; details about air passengers as well as the European Criminal Records Information System – after Brexit is delivered.
“Otherwise, without a new basis for a security partnership, we in Germany would have to delete all UK data from our databases. Once made, such a decision is essentially irreversible,” Seehofer wrote.
His letter came days before Theresa May’s meeting with the German chancellor, who has played a crucial role in shaping the bloc’s approach to the UK’s exit. Before her talks with May, Merkel stated she wanted to maintain close ties with Britain, “especially in the area of foreign and security policy.”
The prime minister’s cabinet, which has been split over the policy, is set to hold a meeting later on Friday to discuss a “third way” customs plan for Brexit, ahead of the publication of a White Paper.