Enhancing protection of public spaces and critical infrastructures in the Western Balkan

QKEDH, part of the Albanian delegation on a study visit to Norway.
Meeting between the CVE Center and UNICEF Albania: “Strengthening Cooperation for the Prevention of Violent Extremism”.

Enhancing protection of public spaces and critical infrastructures in the Western Balkan

Enhancing protection of public spaces and critical infrastructures in the Western Balkan

Publisher: Cve.gov.al 10/05/2024

On May 7 – 10, 2024 Tirana welcomed a workshop part of the UE project “Enhancing protection of public spaces and critical infrastructures in the Western Balkan” financed by the European Commission, implemented by four member countries of the European Union (EU) led by France (French Ministry of Interior/ Directorate of International Security Cooperation and its operator CIVIPOL, Croatian Ministry of Interior, Italian Ministry of Interior, Center for Security Studies (ΚΕΜΕΑ) of the Hellenic Ministry of Citizen Protection). The workshop was setup under the coordination of the Albanian Ministry of Internal Affairs and full engagement from the Coordination Center for Countering Violent Extremism (CCVE).

Diplomatic representatives attended and greeted the event: French ambassador, Madam Catherine Suard; deputy ambassador of the European Delegation, Mr. Andre Rizzo, representative from the Italian Embassy, ​​Mr. Luigi Mattirolo and representative from the Croatian Embassy, ​​Mrs. Maja Drmac.

The workshop was also greeted by the Albanian deputy minister on Internal Affairs, Mr. Besford Lamallari and the National Coordinator/ Director of CCVE, Ms. Lejdi Dervishi.

In her speech, Mrs. Dervishi thanked the participants and emphasized that Albania remains committed to ensuring positive progress of this program, aiming capacity enhancement of the institutions involved. The CCVE operates under the umbrella of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and in close cooperation with line ministries and international partners, because the multi-agency approach shall guarantee moving forward in fulfilling the agenda and within the framework of the Joint Action Plan on Counter-Terrorism for the Western Balkans, as well as the harmonization of national legislation with the European directives.

The workshop was attended by more than 40 representatives from 21 Albanian institutions whose field of responsibility includes “protection of critical infrastructures and public spaces”. Enhancing the capacities for the protection of critical infrastructures and public spaces, is one of the main recommendations of the European Union for Albania in the field of counterterrorism.

CIVIPOL experts made presentations on the institutions of the European Union, the typology of legislation, procedures for the implementation of acts in the EU; the joint action plan on counterterrorism in the Western Balkans, with demonstrations from the Croatian and French model; as well as a comparative analysis comparing the benefits of the EU legislation in relation to the national legislation.

The presentations focused on an overview of the EU’s Critical Infrastructure Policy and the European legal framework regulating Critical Infrastructure. In an analysis of the CER Directive 2022/2557, the next steps to be taken by the EU member states were presented, where by 17.10.2024 the necessary measures will be adopted in accordance with the CER Directive and will enter into force for implementation from 18.10.2024. While from January 2026, each member state will adopt a strategy to increase the sustainability of strategic entities/infrastructures. Recommendations were also given for harmonizing local legislation with the CER Directive, in order to protect critical national entities with transborder impact.

Presentations on Directive (EU) 2017/541 on the fight against terrorism and Regulation (EU) 2019/1148 were made, including implementation in practice; as well as recommendations were given for alignment with the EU acquis on the protection of public spaces.