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    • On Readmission, Integrated Border Management and Human Trafficking: Representatives of the Ministry of Internal Affairs Guests of the Centre

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    • Date: 09 March 2009

      Representatives of Serbia’s Internal Affairs Ministry, Zorica Đokić-Milosavljević, Snežana Elez and Nebojša Purić were Centre for Civil-Military Relations’ guests on Monday, March 2, lecturing within the „School for European Security“ programme.

      Zorica Đokić-Milosavljević, Head of the Department for Travel Documents and Readmission had said how ever since March 2003, when responsibility for the matter of readmission was handled over to the Ministry, until January 1, 2008 when the Single Readmission Agreement became effective, 26,000 individuals have returned to Serbia. After saying this, she refused to accept the claims how this number is considerably larger. Until the single agreement, 15 separate documents signed with 17 countries have served as the basics for their readmission. „The decision in this matter is brought entirely by the country where person in the matter is staying illegally“, she pointed out, „but, (after this person returns to Serbia) he/she has the constitutional right to decide on the place of stay“.

      What writers of the single agreement were aiming for, was reducing the possibility of the so-called „boomerang effect“, that is, situation where a number of persons keeps coming back, but now to some other EU member state. Finally, she concluded, one should remember that agreeing to the terms of readmission, was part of the effort necessary to make visa facilitation possible.

      Colonel Nebojša Purić, Deputy Head of the Border Police, began his presentation by explaining the nature of border disputes with Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina. Later on, he presented on the demilitarization of state border regime („from green to blue“), which ended in 2007. Finally, great deal of Purić’s attention was dedicated to presenting the on-going reform of the Border Police education and practices.

      Snežana Elez warned upon two worrying trends. One is related to the lowest age for victims of human trafficking, while other is showing that more and more citizens of Serbia every year are becoming victims, thus showing how Serbia is now a place of origin, not only destination. She emphasized the importance of establishing difference between „human trafficking“ and illegal migration (nearest translation is “counter band of human beings“), after the amendments in the Criminal Law were passed.

      Students of the School were interested to learn more, on how Ministry’s employees perceive institutions of state reaction problems they spoke about. Zorica Đokić-Milosavljević emphasized how important it is to implement the recently approved Strategy of reintegration. Snežana Elez, from her point of view, added how it is important to follow the Action Plan against human trafficking, recently approved. Nebojša Purić presented the value of making agreement with Frontex (agency coordinating border security efforts) and announced the upcoming, March 5 and 6 ministerial conferences.

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