Answer given by Mr Avramopoulos on behalf of the European Commission
1. The coastal regions in Algeria, Tunisia and Libya can be monitored on the basis of risk analysis by the European Border and Coast Guard Agency (EBCGA) with optical and radar satellite imagery as part of Eurosur Fusion Services.
2. The EBCGA will work on improving the existing service portfolio. Airborne surveillance is expected to cover new areas.
The possible use of unmanned aircrafts will depend on the results of test flights and feasibility studies currently conducted. If successful, the use of unmanned aircraft for surveillance purposes may become part of the Eurosur Fusion Service portfolio.
3. The Eurosur Fusion Service ‘Large Area Pre-Frontier Monitoring’ delivers a combination of pre-frontier monitoring and reference mapping capabilities over large areas (above 500 sq. km). Areas to be monitored are identified following a risk analysis, and in order to support the strategic and operational assessment of illegal migration and cross-border crime related activities.
The service may be requested by the National Coordination Centres of Member States and by the Risk Analysis Unit (RAU) of the EBCGA. As the test phase for this service is about to be concluded, this service is not yet in operation.