The 17th Conference of Prosecutors General of the Member States of the CBSS

Prosecutor General’s Office of the Russian Federation hosted the 17th Conference of Prosecutors General of the Member States of the Council of the Baltic Sea States (CBSS) on 19 – 21 September 2017 in the Kaliningrad Oblast.

The  representatives of Prosecution Authorities of Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Latvia, Norway, Poland and Sweden as well as Dr. E. Brandt, President of the Network of Prosecutors on Environmental Crim in the Baltic Sea Region, Ms. V. Polatside, Senior Adviser and Head of the Task Force against Trafficking in Human beings at the CBSS and Ms. J. Hubner, Executive Director of the International Association of Prosecutors gathered in the city of Svetlogorsk to address the role of prosecutors in countering challenges and threats to security such as illegal migration, environmental crimes as well as terrorism and the use of information and communication technologies for terrorist propaganda.

The participants discussed risks of uncontrolled migration that can lead to rising crime, aggravation and expansion of interethnic conflicts and recognised the need to improve control over the channels of illegal migration. Some of the challenges mentioned were lack of interpreters for migrants, especially for people speaking rare dialects, identification of victims at the border crossing points, and the collection of evidence.

Specialisation of prosecutors to investigate environmental crimes was welcomed by the participants and the work carried out by the Network of Prosecutors on environmental crimes in the Baltic Sea region (ENPRO) was specially commended. The aims of ENPRO are to promote prosecution of environmental crimes in the Baltic Sea region, to establish routines for a prompt communication and efficiency of legal assistance, share experiences and to detect and identify existing and “new” types of environmental crimes.  ENPRO is also building up a database of environmental cases in the region. It was recommended during the conference to intensify cooperation between the CBSS and ENPRO.

Terrorism in all its forms was recognised to be one of the most serious threats to international peace and security.  Terrorism and violent extremism is a rather new area of criminality and participants expressed their concern that a number of cases will grow and the need to train specialised prosecutors will become more pressing.

Pursuant to the decision of 15th Conference of the Prosecutors General of the CBSS (Stockholm, 15 – 16 February 2012), it was agreed that the 18th Conference will be held in Estonia in 2019.

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