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Regional workshop on improvement of the national contributions to Europol’s TESAT

The project Countering Serious Crime in the Western Balkans – IPA 2019 (CSC WB), in cooperation with the Europol, organized a regional workshop on the “Improvement of the national contributions to the Europol Situation and Trend Report (TESAT)”, which was held on 22nd and 23rd of February 2023, in The Hague, Netherlands. The workshop had two main goals, to enhance cooperation between the Western Balkans and Europol about TESAT, and to reinforce information exchange between the WB delegations.

The two-day event brought together national law enforcement representatives (LEAs) of the WB countries and Europol. The beneficiaries had a possibility to get additional input from Europol representatives on the common understanding of the fields of terrorism, which are reflected in the questionnaire, and on a more substantial contribution to the annual Europol TESAT report. The WB participants also had the opportunity to address the open questions and be aware of the products they should deliver to Europol. The reporting role of the WB LEAs in terrorism issues was particularly highlighted.  Europol assured to provide a methodology, reporting manual, or qualitative questionnaire to facilitate the work of WB LEAs, which could lead to the improvement of the contribution to the Europol TESAT.

Through the work in groups, the WB participants shared and exchanged their views on institutional reporting level related to TESAT.  The importance of good cooperation between the Europol liaison officers related to cross-border cooperation and the sharing of best practices to enhance law enforcement efforts in the region was also emphasized. This exchange of information and experience during the workshop was valuable in promoting mutual understanding.

The project CSC WB IPA 2019 is implemented by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), the Italian Ministry of Interior (IMoI) and the Centre for International Legal Cooperation (CILC), co-financed by the European Union, the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and the Italian Ministry of Interior. Its main objective is to strengthen the cross-border cooperation to counter serious and organised crime in the Western Balkans with institutions and networks of the EU.