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20. 5. 2008 17:29

May 20, 2008: State Security Council Discussed Migration in the Territory of the Czech Republic

Members of the State Security Council today heard a status report on migration in the territory of the Czech Republic in 2007. This document is submitted annually, its purpose being to present objective information on the situation in legal and illegal migration, asylum, integration of aliens as well as projects pursued by the Interior Ministry in these fields.

This year’s report, which evaluates the level of migration in 2007, is designed to serve as a background material for further specification of the Czech Republic’s migration policy (active migration policy, fighting illegal migration, monitoring of migratory movements). Seen in this light, the report reviews primarily the current situation in legislation, visa policy, the Czech Republic’s preparation for its involvement in the Schengen area, and conclusion of agreements on the return of illegal migrants to their countries of origin (so-called readmission agreements).

The report also discussed the reasons for the establishment of the Analytical Centre for the Protection of State Frontiers, situation in legal and illegal migration, crime rate among aliens and other related indicators. According to the report, last year over 700,000 visa applications were filed, almost 267 million people were checked at the borders, more than 390,000 aliens with residence permits and some 160,000 aliens with permanent residence permits were registered in the country. As many as 1,878 new asylum seekers were registered last year, while 191 persons were granted asylum. The report goes on to say that there is a declining trend of illegal entries and stays in the country, while almost 8,000 people were detected last year.

Today’s session of the State Security Council also discussed Information on the Implementation of the Action Plan to Combat Illegal Migration for 2007. The tasks in the Updated Timetable were divided into the following four sections – prevention, control and punishment, interdepartmental cooperation, international cooperation. All the tasks are being met. Proceeding from the implementation of some of its tasks, new findings and requirements, the Interior Ministry has proposed partial changes to be made in the document, namely reformulation of some of the tasks and addition of two new tasks. These involve primarily the need of making consistent checks on how aliens comply with their residence regime, and fostering cooperation among Analytical Centres.

Today’s session of the State Security Council also discussed the current issues concerning the North Atlantic Alliance and the European Union in the security sector focused on the security situation in Afghanistan; members of the State Security Council also heard information on the dispatch of a reserve company to Kosovo.

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