Today, a group of 109 officers from 16 European Member States graduated from their basic border and coast guard training after a six-month course in the Policia Nacional academy in Avila, Spain.
The newly graduated officers are now fully-fledged members of the European standing corps and will soon join their colleagues already working all along EU’s external borders and in non-EU countries. They will wear blue uniforms that represent the entire European Union and protect the European area of freedom, security and justice.
“Today shows that the European Union and Member States are working together to build an even stronger protection for our external borders. I am grateful to Spanish authorities for hosting this training,” said Frontex Executive Director Fabrice Leggeri in his speech during the graduation ceremony.
“We are there to make sure that hundreds of millions of Europeans can feel safe at home, knowing that our external borders are secure,” he added.
The six-month course, led by experienced trainers from Frontex and Member States and delivered despite challenged posed by the covid-19 pandemic was designed to provide the officers with the necessary theoretical and practical competences to work together in an operational area, fully complying with the applicable EU law and ethical standards.
The next batch of 180 officers will start their basic training in Avila in January 2022.
The European Border and Coast Guard standing corps helps make the Schengen Area, the largest free travel area in the world, stronger and more resilient. The standing corps began operating in 2021 and will grow to up to 10,000 officers by 2027. Frontex currently deploys about 500 standing corps officers from the first category, the agency’s statutory staff. The standing corps also consists of officers on long- and short-term secondments from Member States.