Moldova, Ukraine will exchange information about situation at border via a computer system
Moldova and Ukraine will exchange information about trafficking in persons and goods at the border via a computer system, after a protocol will be signed in Brussels between customs services of the two states at the trilateral meeting Moldova-Ukraine-European Union.
According to the Border Guard Service of Moldova, the document is important from perspective of combating transborder crime and strengthening mutual trust in process of implementation of the protocol. The sides have pledged to work out joint reports on situation at the border, which will be presented at meetings with the E.U. Border Assistance Mission (EUBAM).
The agreement was signed in presence of the European commissioner for external relations, Benita Ferrero-Waldner, European special envoy Adriaan Jacobovitz de Szeged and EUBAM head and General Ferenc Banffy.
The meeting focussed on five issues, including cooperation with EUBAM, joint border control, demarcation of state border and situation at the closed bridge Moghilov-Podolsk. The Ukrainian side says that it has discovered a fissure on the bridge and its renovation could last. The Moghilov-Podolsk bridge is the only border crossing point for excisable goods.
Also, the sides outlined the need of continuing joint actions at the Moldova-Ukraine border with the participation of the E.U. In turn, the European Commission saluted the intention of Kiev and Chisinau to implement European standards in the field.
Ferrero-Waldner was quoted as saying by BBC that "it is an important step toward consolidating reciprocal confidence and transparency, including in the Transnistrian section and I hope that the open exchange of information between Moldovan and Ukrainian border guards and customs officers will contribute to an effective control."
In this context, General Banffy said that lots of smuggled goods, from food products and drugs to motor vehicles stolen from the West" go through Transnistria. He appreciated the cooperation between Ukraine and Moldova which reduced illegal actions at the border.
The deputy foreign minister of Ukraine, Andrei Veselovsky, stated to BBC that the Kiev government wants to continue and work with Moldova in order to reunify the country.
The trilateral meeting took place on November 20-22. Moldova was represented by a delegation headed by Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and European Integration Eugenia Kistruga. This is the 5th meeting of this kind held this year.
The EUBAM was launched on November 30, 2005 at the joint request of Moldovan and Ukrainian presidents. It is a consulting and technical body without executive power. The two-year mission is based in the Ukrainian city of Odessa. It holds now 7 offices at the Moldova-Ukraine Border – 3 on behalf of Moldova and 4 of Ukraine.
The Moldova-Ukraine state border covers 1,222 kilometres long, of which 470 kilometres of the Moldovan border is controlled by the so-called Transnistrian authorities. // BASA-Press