16. mart 2023 15:13

Gasic meets with Johansson

Autor: Tanjug


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Gasic meets with Johansson


HORGOS - Serbian Interior Minister Bratislav Gasic and EU Home Affairs Commissioner Ylva Johansson on Thursday visited joint border patrols deployed by Serbia and Frontex to the Horgos crossing on the Serbia-Hungary border.

Gasic and Johansson agreed that the level of cooperation between Serbian border police and Frontex, which has resulted in good results in curbing irregular migration, was exceptionally high.

After a meeting with Johansson, Gasic said the cooperation was important for both Serbia and the EU as Serbian and EU borders were being protected from irregular migration through joint efforts, the Interior Ministry said in a statement.

"Since the beginning of the year, 881 attempts to cross the border with Hungary illegally have been thwarted, compared to 172 in the same period of last year," Gasic explained, noting that Serbia would continue the process of aligning with the EU visa policy.

He added that Serbia had demonstrated it was a dependable partner in curbing illegal migration and fighting cross-border crime.

Johansson said the EU was committed to strengthen its partnership with Serbia, especially in the field of efficient border management.

She commended the work done by the Serbian authorities, including by President Aleksandar Vucic, PM Ana Brnabic and Gasic, in the past months on aligning Serbia's visa policy with the EU and noted that it had led to a significant decline of irregular migration into the EU.

She said Frontex engagement in Serbian territory was a practical indication of the EU's commitment to cooperation with Serbia.

She said the joint patrols were protecting borders and working to prevent and curb criminal activities and trafficking.

Johansson added that the next step in the cooperation would be a review of a Serbia-Frontex agreement in order to give Frontex a new mandate and allow its personnel to be deployed to Serbia-EU borders under the command of the Serbian state authorities as well as to Serbia's borders with other neighbouring countries that were not EU member states.

Speaking about Serbia's cooperation with Europol, Johansson said it was extremely good and expressed the confidence it would become even better in the period to come, especially in the field of curbing the trafficking of humans, drugs and weapons.