At a glance
TBILISI, 27 March 2009 -The graduation of 25 border police, patrol police and revenue service officers today following an OSCE-organized course marked the end of an OSCE Mission to Georgia programme to support border management reform and border agency co-operation.
The course on combating terrorism was part of the OSCE Mission's Transitional Institutional Support Programme, which addressed the fight against terrorism and trans-border organized crime, crisis and risk management, criminal procedure code, threat assessment and senior management skills.
The Border and Patrol Police as well as the Revenue Service of Georgia and their counterparts in Armenia, Azerbaijan and Turkey were involved in the 11-month programme, funded in part by Finland, Austria and the Czech Republic
The programme also included 10 cross-border workshops at border-crossing points between Georgia and Armenia, Azerbaijan and Turkey that looked at practical aspects of co-operation and introduced Georgia's Integrated Border Management Strategy.
"We are are encouraged by feedback from these agencies, and with feedback delivered to the OSCE offices in Baku and Yerevan," said Ambassador Terhi Hakala, head of the OSCE Mission. "This feedback show that the programme has helped Georgia improve its border management."
The OSCE Mission to Georgia is in a process of discontinuation. The Greek OSCE Chairmanship is leading intense negotiations that aim to find consensus among the 56 OSCE participating States for a continued OSCE presence in Georgia.
The OSCE Chairperson-in-Office, Greek Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis, underlined during a visit to Georgia earlier this week that the OSCE's work in the country is not yet done.