Italy and Slovenia Initiate Joint Border Patrols to Curb Illegal Immigration

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ROME — Italy and Slovenia have begun a joint patrol service along the 200 kilometers of shared border between the two nations in an attempt to stem the flow of illegal arrivals into Italy.

The checks began Monday morning from the former border crossing of Lipizza, in the Slovenian municipality of Sesana, with agents of the Italian and Slovenian Border Police riding together in the same patrol vehicles.

 The new mixed patrols reflect provisions of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) between Rome and Ljubljana on cross-border cooperation, recently signed by the respective chiefs of immigration and borders of the two governments.

The MOU “is based on positive experience from similar forms of cross-border cooperation already started by the Department for Public Security and with the police of other bordering countries such as Austria, Switzerland, and France,” said a statement from Italy’s interior ministry.

The agreement, statement continued, “will make it possible to step up activities against irregular migration along the ‘Balkan route,’ which for some time has been seeing a resumption of migration flows that — through Bosnia Herzegovina, Croatia and Slovenia — arrive in Friuli Venezia Giulia.”