Cyprus to Install Electronic Surveillance System to Halt Illegal Migrant Crossings

The Cypriot authorities have announced that the country will install an electronic surveillance system along the buffer zone that divides the island nation in order to prevent illegal immigration.

Such a decision has been taken as the number of persons attempting to cross the border illegally has been increasing significantly, reports.

The plan to install the new surveillance system was announced by the spokesperson of the Cypriot government, Marios Pelekanos, after a meeting that was held between defence and police officials.

The most recent data published by the European Union Agency for Asylum, Frontex, shows that the number of the illegal border crossing into Cyprus during the first quarter of 2022 increased greatly.

According to Frontex, the number of irregular migrant arrivals in the Eastern Mediterranean route more than doubled in the first three months of 2022 due to the detection of illegal border crossings in Cyprus.

The number of illegal migrants reaching Cyprus in the first quarter of this year was over 5,100.

“The Eastern Mediterranean route saw the number of arrivals of irregular migrants more than doubled in the January-March period to more than 7,000. The significant increase was driven by the detections of illegal border crossings in Cyprus, which rose three-fold to over 5,100,” the statement of Frontex reads.

Taking into account a large number of illegal crossings, Pelekanos said that his country expects the EU to offer material and financial support as it has been promised.

Previously, the European Commission and the Union’s Agencies came to terms with an action plan with Cyprus in a bid to improve migration management.

The EU Commission revealed that the Commissioner for Home Affairs, Ylva Johansson, and the Minister of Interior of Cyprus, Nikos Nouris, signed an agreement that aims to support and further strengthen the migration management on the island.

The agreement reached between the Commission and Cyprus aims to increase the reception capacities and enhance the material reception conditions for applicants. In addition, the same aims to focus on effective and timely asylum and return policies as well as create and develop integration strategies for migrants.

In addition, Pelekanos revealed that trained personnel would be sent to monitor the buffer zone. Further details regarding the system along the buffer zone are yet to be revealed.

The majority of migrants who attempt to enter Cyprus illegally are nationals of Syria, Pakistan, Bangladesh, India, Nigeria, Congo, and Cameroon.

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