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Today on 6 June 2023, mag. Senad Jušić, Acting Director-General of the Police, met prefect Vittorio Pisani, the Chief of the Italian Police and the Director General of Public Safety, and General Police Director Nikola Milina, the Chief of the Croatian Police, in Rome, Italy.

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The main topic of discussions was joint police cooperation between the countries with the emphasis on migration management, provision of internal security and the fight against organised crime on the Western Balkan migration route, which is known as one of the busiest.

Slovenia, which is a transit country for migrants, deals with the so-called secondary migrations that are particularly managed by criminal groups and individuals. Migration flows primarily depend on the developments in the countries of origin and transit countries, which is why control of the EU’s external borders and partnerships with third countries must be enhanced in order to prevent irregular migration and the activities of criminal groups. The chiefs of police forces agreed that close cooperation was mandatory when fighting against smugglers as this also sends an important signal along the migration route. In doing so, active involvement of the partners in the Western Balkans is necessary, since this is a strategic region for Slovenia.

The cooperation within the Brdo Process has served as a platform for addressing topical challenges relating to internal security and migrations for a number of years. Under the auspices of the process, numerous activities have been underway and a network of operational contact points for the exchange of information was successfully established last year. Mag. Senad Jušić, Acting Director-General of the Police, thanked his Croatian and Italian counterparts for all the support and participation at last year’s meeting of police chiefs and, in particular, the cooperation of the police forces of both neighbouring countries in the ongoing exchange of information from the field.

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They also spoke about the importance of the Schengen Area which, as the area of free movement of people, goods and services, was the greatest advantage and a foundation of the EU. The discussion partners agreed that it was necessary to strive for its preservation and efficient functioning.

Migration management and security challenges must be addressed by means of alternative methods compliant with the existing legislation, such as mobile inland control, targeted police activities, mixed patrols and application of modern technology and equipment for border control. These methods have proved to be efficient and do not represent a burden for the border population, travellers and the economy.

At the meeting, which was implemented in a constructive atmosphere, all the participants agreed on the significance of mutual cooperation and harmonisation of measures for effective migration management. They underlined the importance of regular and timely information exchange between the police forces of all three countries. The police chiefs also advocated for enhanced operational cooperation in the fight against smugglers, enhancement of common patrols in border areas and highlighted caring for vulnerable groups of people who are frequently part of migration flows and regarding whom cooperation must be strengthened when providing humanitarian aid and protecting migrants, particularly women and children, and with regard to respecting their human rights.