Portugal will strengthen its participation in operations of the European Border and Coast Guard Agency (Frontex) in 2018 through a contingent of more than 500 police and military personnel to combat trafficking in human beings and support refugees.

“The tragedy of refugees and migration is now a central issue in the European challenge” and “Portugal has a very active participation in Frontex, which will be strengthened in 2019, both through the governance area of ​​the Internal Administration and through the Armed Forces” , said the Minister of Internal Administration.

“This is a commitment to participate in solidarity” of the European project, in the areas of border management and coastguard action in maritime areas, said Eduardo Cabrita.

“Portugal is one of the states that contributes the most human resources and technical equipment to the Frontex operations, which take place throughout the year,” said Eduardo Cabrita.

According to official data, the country has increased its participation in the operations of this Agency for two years, with 487 personnel in 2016 and 536 last year. Frontex is a structure related to the security and control of the external borders that the SEF has as a point of contact in Portugal.

The GNR will participate with a total of 113 military personnel, including border surveillance experts, crew members, cinematographic teams, vessel registries and tracking, as well as a coastal surveillance vessel, a surveillance vehicle and a patrol cars in operations in Poland, Greece, Spain, Bulgaria and Italy.

The PSP plans to participate with 49 personnel, 10 dog unit teams and 29 police for registration of immigrants. Their detachments will be in Italy, Spain, Greece, Bulgaria, Macedonia and Croatia.

SEF will be present in 11 of 13 Frontex joint operations, with a total of 43 inspectors, involving document specialists, interview experts and cross-border crime. They will be deployed in Spain, France, Italy, Holland, Bulgaria, Greece, Poland and Germany.