On 1 December, the Executive Director of Frontex, the European Border and Coast Guard Agency, opened the first Euro-Arab Technical Roundtable on Border Management and Security, which brought together 32 countries, among them 18 EU and 14 Arab states, to talk about the many challenges at the borders. The roundtable was organised by Frontex and the General Secretariat of the Arab Interior Ministers' Council.
The virtual discussion centred on common challenges such as health at the borders, cross-border crime, including migrant smuggling and trafficking in human beings, and other multi-dimensional threats facing our regional security.
“International cooperation is key to our understanding of integrated border management and we firmly believe that we can effectively manage the complexity of guaranteeing security while promoting mobility at our borders only together with our neighbours and partners,” said Frontex Executive Director Leggeri.
This virtual meeting is part of larger Frontex efforts to strengthen the cooperation with Arab countries.
Last month, Frontex and IOM-MENA organised a webinar on countering trafficking and smuggling of children in the European Union and the Middle East and North Africa region (MENA) on trafficking of children at the border. One of the tools is the training of border guards. Frontex has been active in this field for years in cooperation with specialized UN agencies and NGOs, producing handbooks for border guards on how to detect potential victims and refer for assistance. The Frontex VEGA Handbook: Children at Airports has been translated into Arabic.
This event was financed and organised in the framework of the EU4BorderSecurity project, which aims to enhance dialogue and cooperation in different areas of border management and security between countries of the EU and those of the Levant and the North of Africa.