Valetta, Malta, 22 February 2017: On 21/22 February 2017, the Euromed Police Project held its first High Level Meeting, hosted by the International Institute for Justice and the Rule of Law of Malta.
The purpose of this first High-Level meeting, which gathered representatives from EU Member States and South Partner Countries, was to present and ultimately endorse the Euromed Cooperation Priorities to Increase Citizen Security.
Representatives of the different components of the project were involved in those two days of exchanges, including the project National Coordinators, and the representatives of the Analysis and Capacity Building Networks. In addition, each delegation was headed by a high-level official from the law enforcement services.
The Hon. Dr. Carmelo Abela, Maltese Minister for Home Affairs and National Security, delivered the opening remarks and emphasised the importance of the Euromed Police Project, stating that “over and above domestic plans, we need to ensure that cross-border cooperation continues to be enhanced”. The Minister also pointed out the symbolic dimension of organising this meeting in Malta, an island situated right at the centre of the Mediterranean Sea, and currently holding the Presidency of the Council of the European Union, with an agenda aligned on the Euromed Police foreseen priorities.
Those priorities presented in Malta include counter-terrorism, illegal immigration facilitated by criminal networks and cybercrime. Relying on experts coming from both shores of the Mediterranean Sea, the ambition of this meeting was to bring a “Euromed” dimension on those priorities to be discussed. Specialists from Europol, Interpol, the Cepol or UNCTED also brought their expertise.
The Euromed Police High Level Meeting resulted in the endorsement by the different Partner Countries on the above-mentioned priorities. This means that counter-terrorism, illegal immigration facilitated by criminal networks and cybercrime will form the basis of actions to be implemented throughout the project, including in terms of capacity building.