New agreement to facilitate Czech-German cross-border police operations
A new agreement between the Czech and German interior ministries has just opened the way to closer cooperation in cross-border police operations such as surveillance, controlled deliveries and hot pursuit. The agreement, which went into force on October 1, should enable more effective action in the fight against drug-abuse, illegal migration and car-theft.
Gradually, the two countries’ police forces established instruments to help crack-down on cross border crime, from information-sharing, cross-border personnel support and joint centres to language courses facilitating direct communication between officers in the regions. Now, the 2016 agreement between the Czech Republic and Germany has taken that cooperation to a new level. Interior Ministry spokeswoman Martina Němcová:
“The primary aim of this agreement is to increase the efficiency of bilateral cooperation in cracking down on cross-border crime and maintaining law and order. It enables joint patrols or joint police operations on the entire territory of the two countries and gives officers of one country the right to intervene 10-kms into the territory of the other without prior warning if people’s lives or health are in danger.”
Germany has an agreement to this effect with all its neighbours, while the Czech Republic is still in the process of replacing bilateral agreements from the pre-Schengen period. Following talks with his German counterpart Thomas de Maizière in Berlin last week, Czech Interior Minister Milan Chovanec said work was underway to replace a Czech-Polish agreement from 2002, setting down conditions which would give the police force of the three countries the same powers in the tri-border area of the Czech Republic, Germany and Poland.