Civil Liberties Committee MEPs have endorsed the Commission's proposal for a standard EU travel document to ease the return of non-EU 'irregular' migrants who do not hold valid passports or identity cards.
The proposal aims to ease the process of returning residents with'irregular' immigration statuses to their countries of origin in a safe and lawful manner.
Member States currently face difficulties arranging these returns as destination countries frequently refuse to accept the substitute travel documents issued to the returning residents.
Mr Jussi Halla-Aho, the Finnish MEP, who drafted the text stated that,"the low enforcement-rate of return decisions is detrimental to the credibility and legitimacy of the European asylum and immigration policy in the eyes of our citizens, and it also encourages abuse of the asylum system".
The new scheme proposed would introduce a standardised format for the EU travel document, which would include a passport photograph together with details of name, age, gender and distinguishing marks.
The new Regulation, having been endorsed by the Civil Liberties Committee, will now have to be agreed with the Council via the usual legislative procedure before it enters into force.