PRESS RELEASE BY THE MINISTRY FOR HOME AFFAIRS AND NATIONAL SECURITY AND BY THE PARLIAMENTARY SECRETARIAT FOR EUROPEAN FUNDS AND SOCIAL DIALOGUE: Inauguration of the Passenger Information Unit

Minister for Home Affairs and National Security Michael Farrugia and Parliamentary Secretary for European Funds and Social Dialogue Aaron Farrugia presided over the inauguration of the Passenger Information Unit held at the Police Headquarters.

Minister Michael Farrugia said that the European Union felt the need to implement this directive after the European Union experienced an influx of irregular entrance through its borders in the last three years, and also the continuous threat to internal security. European citizens expect that there is effective control through the EU entrance and exit systems, and through the Schengen areas. Thus, the European Union has developed an information system for further security, border management and migration. The implementation of the Passenger Name Record (PNR) is a system that is used in nember states in reaction to terrorism threats and criminality in the European Union.

Minister Michael Farrugia stated the Malta was one of the first member states that implemented this directive. The purpose of the directive is to process, detect, investigate and prosecute persons associated with terrorism and organised crime. The directive collects and transfers PNR data received from air carriers for flights intra-EU and from third countries. The procedure is based on two push methods�24 hours before the departure and after the closure of the flight.

Minister Michael Farrugia maintained that the passengers are evaluated according to a list of criteria determined beforehand and consequently are evaluated in various databases such as the SIS (Schengen Information System), NSL (National Stop List), and EIS (Europol Information System). Competent authorities which include the Police Force, the Customs Department, and Europol, can request such data.

Parliamentary Secretary for European Funds and Social Dialogue Aaron Farrugia said that through European Funds, Malta is at the forefront amongst EU member states in implementing this system, following the direction of the European Commission.

Farrugia stated that 75% of the Euros 2 million investment were derived from European Funds, which forms part of a holistic plan to strengthen security in Malta. Through the Internal Security Fund, through which Malta is benefitting from more than Euros 84 million, the Armed Forces of Malta and the Malta Police Force will continue to be the largest beneficiaries because of their important role in securing the country. The Parliamentary Secretary explained that work is ongoing to finalise the strategy for funding for the 2020 program.

Inspector Sandra Zammit, the head of the Passenger Name Record Unit stated that the unit is working hand in hand with other member states to strenghten the security nationally and internationally.

The European Commissioner for the Security Union commended the Maltese efforts for being one of the first countries to implement this directive. Commissioner King said that the processing of the Passenger Name Record is an essential instrument to strengthen the EU’s common response to terrorism and serious and organised crime.

Source: Government of Malta


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PRESS RELEASE BY THE MINISTRY FOR HOME AFFAIRS AND NATIONAL SECURITY AND BY THE PARLIAMENTARY SECRETARIAT FOR EUROPEAN FUNDS AND SOCIAL DIALOGUE: Inauguration of the Passenger Information Unit

Minister for Home Affairs and National Security Michael Farrugia and Parliamentary Secretary for European Funds and Social Dialogue Aaron Farrugia presided over the inauguration of the Passenger Information Unit held at the Police Headquarters.

Minister Michael Farrugia said that the European Union felt the need to implement this directive after the European Union experienced an influx of irregular entrance through its borders in the last three years, and also the continuous threat to internal security. European citizens expect that there is effective control through the EU entrance and exit systems, and through the Schengen areas. Thus, the European Union has developed an information system for further security, border management and migration. The implementation of the Passenger Name Record (PNR) is a system that is used in nember states in reaction to terrorism threats and criminality in the European Union.

Minister Michael Farrugia stated the Malta was one of the first member states that implemented this directive. The purpose of the directive is to process, detect, investigate and prosecute persons associated with terrorism and organised crime. The directive collects and transfers PNR data received from air carriers for flights intra-EU and from third countries. The procedure is based on two push methods�24 hours before the departure and after the closure of the flight.

Minister Michael Farrugia maintained that the passengers are evaluated according to a list of criteria determined beforehand and consequently are evaluated in various databases such as the SIS (Schengen Information System), NSL (National Stop List), and EIS (Europol Information System). Competent authorities which include the Police Force, the Customs Department, and Europol, can request such data.

Parliamentary Secretary for European Funds and Social Dialogue Aaron Farrugia said that through European Funds, Malta is at the forefront amongst EU member states in implementing this system, following the direction of the European Commission.

Farrugia stated that 75% of the Euros 2 million investment were derived from European Funds, which forms part of a holistic plan to strengthen security in Malta. Through the Internal Security Fund, through which Malta is benefitting from more than Euros 84 million, the Armed Forces of Malta and the Malta Police Force will continue to be the largest beneficiaries because of their important role in securing the country. The Parliamentary Secretary explained that work is ongoing to finalise the strategy for funding for the 2020 program.

Inspector Sandra Zammit, the head of the Passenger Name Record Unit stated that the unit is working hand in hand with other member states to strenghten the security nationally and internationally.

The European Commissioner for the Security Union commended the Maltese efforts for being one of the first countries to implement this directive. Commissioner King said that the processing of the Passenger Name Record is an essential instrument to strengthen the EU’s common response to terrorism and serious and organised crime.

Source: Government of Malta


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