Help Print this page 

Summaries of EU Legislation

Title and reference
Terrorist kidnappings — sharing information

Summaries of EU legislation: direct access to the main summaries page.
Multilingual display

Terrorist kidnappings — sharing information


Council recommendation on sharing of information on terrorist kidnappings



  • It sets out a procedure for the sharing of experiences between EU countries to help resolve terrorist kidnapping situations.


  • Terrorist kidnappings pose a huge challenge to EU countries. To successfully resolve such situations, countries need background information, to establish contacts and initiate confidential discussions. Sharing information can quickly identify whether another EU country already has helpful experience with kidnappings in the same region, by the same terrorist group or in similar circumstances.
  • To achieve this, each EU country is recommended to circulate data sheets to other EU countries on any terrorist kidnapping, after the incident has been resolved.
  • This information should include:
    • country and region in which the kidnapping took place;
    • number and nationalities of the hostages;
    • time and date of the kidnapping and its conclusion;
    • responsible terrorist group or perpetrator;
    • kidnapping method;
    • motivation for the kidnapping;
    • any mediator involvement;
    • contact person in the EU country concerned.
  • The following additional information should also be supplied where appropriate:
    • the hostages’ reason for being in the country, their language skills and gender;
    • the ideology, nationality and language skills of the perpetrators;
    • means used by the perpetrators to address the public;
    • details on the perpetrators’ method of operation.
  • Annexes to the recommendation propose a standard format for this information, as well as suggestions for additional information to be supplied, such as negotiating strategy, delaying tactics and whether ransoms or political demands were involved.
  • Further information and experience should be shared bilaterally in accordance with national law. Handling of personal data should also be in accordance with national law.
  • Each EU country should compile information on any incidents occurring since 1 January 2002 and supply a summary to other EU countries. A list of contact persons should also circulate in order to facilitate direct communication.
  • Information should be shared through the bi-directional link network for EU-wide information sharing on terrorist incidents (see Council Decision 2005/671/JHA). Information should also be shared with Europol, with a review after 12 months to determine whether the amount and type of data requires a database.


For more information, see:


Council Recommendation of 12 June 2007 concerning sharing of information on terrorist kidnappings (OJ L 214, 17.8.2007, pp. 9-12)


Council Decision 2005/671/JHA of 20 September 2005 on the exchange of information and cooperation concerning terrorist offences (OJ L 253, 29.9.2005, pp. 22-24).

last update 03.05.2016