Central Asian border management agencies advancing border check standards

Border control standards were discussed during a regional workshop on border checks held in Ashgabat between February 19-21. A total of 15 border guards and customs officers from Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan were trained to use modern techniques and apply international standards in carrying out border checks and to manage mixed migration flows in accordance with international standards. Participants shared their experience and discussed the issues of border control organisation in their countries - administrative rules, regime, tools and methods of control with a focus on flow management. FRONTEX experts presented latest technological solutions in border control. Also, the participants broadened their knowledges of international standards in provision of basic services to vulnerable migrant groups crossing the border - refugees. This means that border guards/customs officers must be able to correctly identify migrants and assess their needs, provide services or refer them to a service provider, and establish cooperation for effective migrant referral. A separate session was dedicated to border check ethics and public service standards, which include sensitivity to gender, ethnicity, protecting migrants' data and respecting migrants' rights and dignity.

During the visit the participants have had opportunity to visit the airport of Ashgabat, where Turkmen Migration Service demonstrated integrated IT technologies of border control.

This BOMCA activity, conducted in cooperation with FRONTEX and UNHCR, aimed at strengthening the capacity of border and customs control officers, enabling them to better categorise the different types of persons crossing the borders while also respecting document security, ethics and human rights.