On 11 June 2021, under the auspice of EU Border Assistance Mission, high-level representatives of the Security and Intelligence Service of the Republic of Moldova (SIS) and the Security Service of Ukraine (SSU) held a trilateral meeting in Odesa. The main goal of the meeting was to broaden cooperation between security services of both countries, enhance information exchange and step-up capacities to fight cross-border crime at the Moldova-Ukraine border.

In the course of the meeting representatives of two security services discuss cooperation in the light of new threats and shifting modi-operandi of organised cross-border crime. The parties exchanged information on criminal activities alongside Moldova-Ukraine border and shared best practices on combating it. Moldovan and Ukrainian high-level security officials discussed counteracting illicit firearms trafficking, smuggling of drugs, tobacco, and alcohol. At the same time, the issue of trafficking in human beings was scrutinized by the participants who highlighted vulnerable areas and possible mitigating measures, as well as prospects for future joint activities.

The Information and Security Service of the Republic of Moldova stressed the significance of further development of trilateral cooperation within the EUBAM platform. “Interaction in this format gives a unique opportunity to debate on concrete issues and identify solutions that help to counter smuggling of narcotic and radioactive substances, alcohol and tobacco products at the Moldova-Ukraine border. Despite COVID-19 international restrictive measures, achieving constant interaction and exchange of information on existing risks and threats in the border area significantly contributes to ensuring security at the national and regional levels”, the Head of the Moldovan Delegation stated. In this regard, he also expressed gratitude to the Head of the EUBAM for his diligent work in maintaining good partnership and cooperation.

On their side, the Security Service of Ukraine welcomed EUBAM’s initiative on bringing together representatives of security services in the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine, underlining the importance of enhancing cooperation with their colleagues from the Republic of Moldova. In this context, the Head of the Ukrainian Delegation mentioned: “Today, we have agreed to strengthen cooperation on intelligence exchange and risk analysis at the Moldova-Ukraine border. At the end of the day, it is the cooperation of our two special services that will make it possible to better combat cross-border crime, illicit trafficking in firearms, explosives, tobacco products, etc.”

Concluding the meeting, General Slawomir Pichor, the Head of EUBAM stated:

“To date, the Mission together with security services of the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine have enjoyed effective cooperation. Today, we were able to step it up even further. Thanks to this meeting, we mapped out priorities and established good foundations for enhancing cooperation. I trust that this trilateral meeting will boost information exchange and improve responses to the challenges both services are facing at the Moldova-Ukraine border. At the same time, I would like to reiterate EUBAM’s readiness to provide strategic, analytical, and operational support.”