Έμβλημα Κυπριακής Δημοκρατίας
Υπουργείο Δικαιοσύνης και Δημοσίας Τάξεως

Ομιλίες



02/06/2015





ADDRESS BY THE PERMANENT SECRETARY OF THE MINISTRY OF JUSTICE AND PUBLIC ORDER,
MR. A. MYLONAS AT THE CYPNAVAL CONFERENCE 2015, Sun Hall Hotel, Larnaca

Honorable Ambassadors,
Colleague Permanent Secretary of Ministry of Defense,
Distinguished guests,
Ladies and gentlemen

It is a pleasure for me to be here, to speak on behalf of the Ministry of Justice and Public Order on the opening day of the IIV CYPNAVAL Conference.

The importance of Maritime Operations and especially Search and Rescue Operations could not be stressed enough. Such operations in the Mediterranean, have been at the centre of international attention in recent years and especially in recent months. We have witnessed desperate people falling victims of unscrupulous traffickers and risk their lives in an attempt to escape our war-torn, politically unstable and poverty stricken neighbouring countries.

The challenges that arise from such instability are not only numerous, but also highly complex. Cyprus, as a contracting state to the 1979 Search and Rescue Convention, is responsible for providing Search and Rescue Services by means of coordinating mobile units and surveillance activities in the Eastern Mediterranean, for an area of almost 20 times the size of the island.

This responsibility has created throughout the years a tradition of effective cooperation among all the national authorities involved in search and rescue. The Ministry of Justice and Public Order, as one of these authorities, provides appropriate human recourses and mobile units to cover both Air and Sea Surface Operations, including four fully equipped helicopters with their crews and 18 surface mobile units capable of responding to different incidents at sea. The presence of qualified crew twenty four hours a day, seven days a week, ensures a quick response to any SAR incident.

The systematic training provided in cooperation with the Rescue Coordination Center and other National Authorities, has given additional experience and knowhow to the crews of our helicopters, rescue boats and patrol vessels. Furthermore, it is important to point out the importance of international cooperation that has been established, which is the key to success, especially for a small country like Cyprus with limited resources, but with a massive area of responsibility.

Since our accession to the European Union, Cyprus Police Officers dealing with the protection of the External Borders are called upon to work in a multinational environment, cooperating on a daily basis with Border Guards from other Member States either in the field of information or in joint operations.

The adoption of the EUROSUR Regulation in December 2012, established the European Borders Surveillance System providing all Member States with external sea and/or land borders one common network that allows the exchange of information in almost real time. The operation of the system has contributed to the rescue of hundreds of migrants, who as mentioned above, attempt to enter Europe, usually travelling by unseaworthy overloaded rib boats and fishing vessels or according to the latest trend, by small freighters, the so called “Ghost Ships”. In order to give a brighter view of this situation, I only mention that based on the latest report by Amnesty International, it is estimated that every year more than 3000 persons are drowned at sea in their effort to enter Europe by Sea illegally.

Ladies and Gentlemen; Efforts have been made in recent years to upgrade the capabilities of the Cyprus Police to respond to Search and Rescue Operations. Cyprus Police has been recently equipped with two new modern helicopters and has managed to renew the infrastructure and supporting facilities of its air fleet by making use of European Funds. To that end, part of the maritime fleet of the Marine Police has also been renewed and it is the intention of the Ministry to complete the renewal program for the remaining fleet by the year 2020, also taking advantage of European Funds.

Concluding, I would like to congratulate CYPNAVAL for organizing the present conference and I wish you every success. As a Ministry, we look forward to supporting the continuation of the forum in the future.

Thank you for your attention.
ADDRESS BY THE PERMANENT SECRETARY OF THE MINISTRY OF JUSTICE AND PUBLIC ORDER,
MR. A. MYLONAS AT THE CYPNAVAL CONFERENCE 2015, Sun Hall Hotel, Larnaca Honorable Ambassadors,
Colleague Permanent Secretary of Ministry of Defense,
Distinguished guests,
Ladies and gentlemen It is a pleasure for me to be here, to speak on behalf of the Ministry of Justice and Public Order on the opening day of the IIV CYPNAVAL Conference. The importance of Maritime Operations and especially Search and Rescue Operations could not be stressed enough. Such operations in the Mediterranean, have been at the centre of international attention in recent years and especially in recent months. We have witnessed desperate people falling victims of unscrupulous traffickers and risk their lives in an attempt to escape our war-torn, politically unstable and poverty stricken neighbouring countries. The challenges that arise from such instability are not only numerous, but also highly complex. Cyprus, as a contracting state to the 1979 Search and Rescue Convention, is responsible for providing Search and Rescue Services by means of coordinating mobile units and surveillance activities in the Eastern Mediterranean, for an area of almost 20 times the size of the island. This responsibility has created throughout the years a tradition of effective cooperation among all the national authorities involved in search and rescue. The Ministry of Justice and Public Order, as one of these authorities, provides appropriate human recourses and mobile units to cover both Air and Sea Surface Operations, including four fully equipped helicopters with their crews and 18 surface mobile units capable of responding to different incidents at sea. The presence of qualified crew twenty four hours a day, seven days a week, ensures a quick response to any SAR incident. The systematic training provided in cooperation with the Rescue Coordination Center and other National Authorities, has given additional experience and knowhow to the crews of our helicopters, rescue boats and patrol vessels. Furthermore, it is important to point out the importance of international cooperation that has been established, which is the key to success, especially for a small country like Cyprus with limited resources, but with a massive area of responsibility. Since our accession to the European Union, Cyprus Police Officers dealing with the protection of the External Borders are called upon to work in a multinational environment, cooperating on a daily basis with Border Guards from other Member States either in the field of information or in joint operations. The adoption of the EUROSUR Regulation in December 2012, established the European Borders Surveillance System providing all Member States with external sea and/or land borders one common network that allows the exchange of information in almost real time. The operation of the system has contributed to the rescue of hundreds of migrants, who as mentioned above, attempt to enter Europe, usually travelling by unseaworthy overloaded rib boats and fishing vessels or according to the latest trend, by small freighters, the so called “Ghost Ships”. In order to give a brighter view of this situation, I only mention that based on the latest report by Amnesty International, it is estimated that every year more than 3000 persons are drowned at sea in their effort to enter Europe by Sea illegally. Ladies and Gentlemen; Efforts have been made in recent years to upgrade the capabilities of the Cyprus Police to respond to Search and Rescue Operations. Cyprus Police has been recently equipped with two new modern helicopters and has managed to renew the infrastructure and supporting facilities of its air fleet by making use of European Funds. To that end, part of the maritime fleet of the Marine Police has also been renewed and it is the intention of the Ministry to complete the renewal program for the remaining fleet by the year 2020, also taking advantage of European Funds. Concluding, I would like to congratulate CYPNAVAL for organizing the present conference and I wish you every success. As a Ministry, we look forward to supporting the continuation of the forum in the future. Thank you for your attention.

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