Bulgaria, Turkey to Launch Joint Border Patrols, Contact CenterDiplomacy | September 29, 2012, Saturday // 18:31| views
The Interior Ministers of Turkey and Bulgaria, Idris Naim Sahin and Tsvetan Tsvetanov, met in Turkey on Saturday. Photo by Interior Ministry
Bulgaria and Turkey are set to launch joint border and customs patrols, Bulgarian Interior Minister Tsvetan Tsvetanov has announced after meeting with his Turkish counterpart Idris Naim Sahin.
On Saturday, Tsvetanov and Sahin talked discussed the setting up of a joint police and customs contact center on the Bulgarian Turkish Border, the Bulgarian Interior Ministry press service reported.
Both interior ministers expressed their satisfaction with the bilateral cooperation in police affairs.
"Turkey is a a very important partner for Bulgaria in combating drug trafficking, human trafficking, and illegal migration," Tsvetanov declared about his meeting with Sahin.
He urged an acceleration of the projects for joint border patrols and a joint border contact center between Bulgaria and Turkey.
"I believe that the creation of this contact center will help for preserving order and law at the border," the Bulgarian Interior Minister stated.
He added that Bulgaria already has border contact centers with all of its other neighbors – Greece, Romania, Macedonia, and Serbia – which have been praised by the neighboring nations and the EU institutions.
According to Tsvetanov, Bulgaria can provide a building for the setting up of a trilateral border contact center – apparently not only with Turkey but also with Greece – at the Kapitan Andreevo border crossing point – where the borders of Bulgaria, Turkey, and Greece come together.
Turkey's Interior Minister Idris Naim Sahin has expressed interest in deepening the police cooperation with Bulgaria "based on long-term strategic interests".
In his words, Turkey is ready to work for the establishment of a trilateral border contact center.
Both ministers spoke in favor of the formation of joint patrols on the Bulgarian-Turkish border between the Bulgarian Border Police and the Turkish Gendarmerie.
Tsvetanov further said Bulgaria supports the launch of visa dialogue between the EU and Turkey, and hopes that the two parties will soon sign a readmission agreement in order to boost migration management.
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