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Il-Ħamis, 26 t'Ottubru 2006 - StrasburguEdizzjoni riveduta

Question no 71 by Simon Busuttil (H-0810/06 ) 
 Subject: Sea border patrols

How does the Commission assess the first EU sea border patrols in the Canary Islands? How effective have the patrols been in countering the influx of immigration?

How does the Commission propose to improve their effectiveness? Have EU countries who pledged support to these patrols delivered on their pledges?

What are the Commission's plans for the new patrols in the Mediterranean and when will these patrols start? Which EU countries have agreed to support this mission and what means will they provide?


Operation HERA II covering illegal immigration by sea from Africa to the Canary Islands commenced off the African coastline on 11 August. This phase of operations is due to end by 15 November. It is therefore too early yet to say anything definitive about the efficiency of the operation. FRONTEX, however, which is responsible for coordinating the operation, shall carry out a thorough evaluation of the operation - not the Commission - in order to be able to assess the results and, if necessary, enhance the effectiveness of future operations of this kind.

However, the Commission would like to underline that the FRONTEX Agency is a coordinating body, which does not itself have border guard officers or operational assets at its disposal. It is up to Member States to contribute both personnel and assets for operations. In general Member States do deliver the support they pledge; however there is still room for improvement in terms of better internal planning for all Member States involved in operations.

The FRONTEX Agency launched operation NAUTILUS in the central Mediterranean on 5 October with a view to bringing the illegal immigration by sea from Northern Africa under control and significantly bringing down the loss of lives at sea due to immigrants using unsafe ways and means of transportation.

Italy, Greece, Malta, France and Germany contribute to this operation with personnel and assets, including vessels, surveillance planes and helicopters.

Aġġornata l-aħħar: 8 ta' Novembru 2006Avviż legali