On 12 May, in Riga, State Secretary of the Ministry of the Interior Dimitrijs Trofimovs and his counterparts from the Baltic and Nordic countries met in the so-called NB8 (Nordic-Baltic Eight) format to discuss current issues related to external border security, instrumentalization of migrants, as well as digital security. The countries agreed on a common approach among European Union (EU) Member States in the context of the current security challenges.
“Given the geopolitical situation, EU Member States need to focus on acting in a united and proactive manner, including by developing legal and institutional frameworks as well as political pressure on migrants’ countries of origin and transit, to address the challenges at hand. Latvia is one of the countries still facing a hybrid attack by the Belarusian authorities on the Latvian-Belarusian border and is actively working on the introduction of technical solutions and innovations in border surveillance, which will allow for a more effective response to any kind of border violations,” emphasized D. Trofimovs during the discussion.
Human trafficking and smuggling of migrants across the external borders of the EU pose a serious threat to the internal security of every Member State. It is therefore important to recognize the areas of common action and to improve the Schengen Borders Code. EU Member States have agreed on amendments to the Schengen Borders Code which aim at improving the management of the external borders of the EU in cases of serious threats to public health or challenges posed by the instrumentalization of migrants, as well as reviewing and strengthening measures at the internal borders of Member States in order to respond more effectively to threats that affect most Member States at the same time and to make full use of alternative measures to reintroducing internal border controls.
The meeting in the format of the NB8 countries – Denmark, Estonia, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, Finland and Sweden – was organized in the context of the coordination of national cooperation launched by Latvia in 2023. The close cooperation between the Baltic and Nordic countries, which started in the early 90s, is based on shared values and political and economic interests.
Ministry of the Interior