Agreement on Europe cross-border crime fighting

(7 Oct 2022)
Amsterdam – 7 October 2022
1. Various of Dutch Minister of Justice and Security Dilan Yeşilgöz-Zegerius
2. SOUNDBITE (English) Dilan Yeşilgöz-Zegerius, Dutch Minister of Justice and Security:
“We will set up a platform to share information, expertise and best practices on countering criminal infiltration of ports and airports, work on stronger cooperation with private partners, and look into ways of reinforcing legislation to raise barriers against corruption and improve security measures. Secondly, we will pursue the strengthening of our screening capabilities regarding financial flows, legal persons, vessels and vehicles through various actions. Thirdly, we will work together with the European Commission and EU agencies on realising a comprehensive approach on addressing the abuse of innovations by criminals while upholding the fundamental rights and data protection requirements we all hold dear. Fourthly, we will intensify the cooperation with Latin America countries through a joint task force on organised drugs-related crime and by joint activities such as the EU-financed El PAcCto program. We will also work together on our approach toward the Western Balkans.”
3. Belgian Justice Minister Vincent Van Quickenborne talking
4. SOUNDBITE (English) Vincent Van Quickenborne, Belgian Justice Minister:
“Well, it is a very important meeting because I mean, criminals do not know borders, so we have to work together. And for example, we have seen that in Antwerp, with the 23 incidents that you’ve seen – bombs and grenades in Antwerp – that 40 of them were Dutch nationals. In 2021, last year, of those people extracting the cocaine from the containers, of the 109 people that were arrested, 57 of the people were Dutch nationals. So that means there was a huge influx of Dutch people in our country and therefore we have to work together.”
5. Van Quickenborne seen in camera screen
6. SOUNDBITE (English) Vincent Van Quickenborne, Belgian Justice Minister:
“Of course this has been a very tough period for myself, especially for my family, my wife and my children. But I mean, I feel a lot of support also for this meeting, for a lot of ministers in our parliament. So the struggle goes on for sure. But I think we’ve entered in a new phase, a new phase called narco terrorism, a phase where the narco terrorists try to destabilise the society and get their grip on society. And of course, we will never allow our countries to become narco states like you see them often, sometimes in Latin America.”
7. Van Quickenborne talking
8. SOUNDBITE (English) Vincent Van Quickenborne, Belgian Justice Minister:
“You know, the thing that they’re doing, the things that they’re trying to do against me is because, I mean, we are putting them into a corner. I mean, they’re feeling the pain. We’ve concluded treaties with Dubai to transfer those drug criminals back to our country. We’re doing a lot on the security of our ports. We voted a lot of laws in Belgium just before the summer to continue that crime fight. And we will never give up.”
10. Van Quickenborne talking into microphone
Ministers from six European nations agreed Friday to step up cross-border cooperation in the fight against organized crime that they warn is undermining society as drug barons violently battle for control of the lucrative drug market.
The ministers met in the Dutch capital that has seen a series of underworld hits in recent years including the slaying of crime reporter Peter R. de Vries and a lawyer representing a witness in a gangland killings investigation.

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