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EU signs Frontex cooperation agreement with Serbia

The Commissioner for Home Affairs, Ylva Johansson, and Serbian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior, Ivica Dacic
The Commissioner for Home Affairs, Ylva Johansson, and Serbian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior, Ivica Dacic Copyright Captura de vídeo de AP
Copyright Captura de vídeo de AP
By Euronews
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By extending cooperation with countries in the Western Balkan region the EU hopes to tackle irregular migration more effectively.

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The European Union and Serbia have signed an operational cooperation agreement on border management with the European Border and Coast Guard Agency (Frontex).

Commissioner for Home Affairs Ylva Johansson and Serbian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior Ivica Dacic signed the deal in Belgrade, meaning Frontex can now work with Serbia more closely.

Johansson stressed the importance of Serbia as a partner in managing migration routes. On her third visit to Serbia, she praised the good cooperation between Serbian border police and Frontex in fighting crime, migrant smuggling and irregular migration. "The Frontex Status Agreement we signed today will upgrade our cooperation," Johansson said. "Under the command and lead of the Serbian authorities, Frontex will support the Serbian border police and law enforcement at the borders with Bosnia Herzegovina and North Macedonia."

This is Serbia’s second agreement with Frontex and, as Dacic said, "police forces will be deployed not only on the state borders with Hungary and Bulgaria as part of operation "Serbia Mainland, but also on the state borders of Serbia with third countries."

This will significantly contribute to the "fight against cross-border crime and irregular migration," he added.

Frontex has over 480 officers deployed in the Western Balkans through joint operations at the external borders of the Union with Albania, North Macedonia and Montenegro; 111 of which are already deployed in Serbia in an ongoing joint operation under the previous status agreement with Serbia at the border with Hungary and Bulgaria.

Video editor • Lucy Davalou

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