In November 2018 representatives of the Montenegrin border police paid a study visit to Poland, organised within the framework of the Visegrad initiative, the Civil Servants Mobility Program. The OSW prepared a week-long program devoted to managing irregular migration in a crisis dimension. Our guests from Montenegro learned about Poland’s system of crisis management and its response procedures in cases of emergency mass migration. They were acquainted with assumptions and practical solutions regarding the protection of the Polish border, as well as the principles of direction, management, command and coordination in crisis situations. During the meetings, they also discussed the specifics of individual sections of the border, with particular emphasis on the challenges related to protecting the EU’s external border. Other subjects discussed include the issue of the Border Guard’s activities in the field of preventing fraud related to the legalisation of foreigners’ residence in Poland. Talks were also held on the prospects for developing Polish-Montenegrin cooperation in exchanging experiences regarding the protection of borders, and on observations concerning the challenges linked to the inflow of migrants onto the territories of Balkan states, including Montenegro itself.
The guests from Montenegro visited the Ministry of Interior Affairs and Administration, the Border Guard’s Headquarters, and the seat of the European Agency for the Coast and Border Guard (Frontex) in Warsaw. They also met representatives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Government Security Centre. The program included a visit to the Centre for Foreigners at Dębak near Warsaw and a meeting with experts from the Office for Foreigners. Part of the visit took place in Podkarpackie Province, in cooperation with the Bieszczady Division of the Border Guard. This made it possible to present the specifics of cooperation between the border guards, both in terms of the external EU border (Poland-Ukraine), as well as on the intra-Schengen border (Poland-Slovakia). The guests learned about the activities of the Centre for Border, Police and Customs Service Cooperation in Barwinek and the Border Guard in Medyka. They also visited the Bieszczady Division of the Border Guard’s headquarters in Przemyśl and the Guarded Centre for Foreigners.
We wish to thank all the people and institutions that supported the OSW in carrying out this project.
Since 2014 the OSW has organised study visits within the framework of the Civil Servants Mobility Program. This is an instrument for cooperation funded by the International Visegrad Fund, implemented by the institutions included in the international Think Visegrad consortium. The program covers visits by functionaries and local government officials from the Eastern Partnership countries, and since 2018 study visits have also been organised for officials from the Western Balkan countries (last year, the OSW organised a visit by officials from Serbia dedicated to issues of cross-border cooperation).