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Ford addresses European Justice Council on cross-border co-operation

Justice Minister David Ford is attending the first meeting of the European Justice and Home Affairs Council hosted by Ireland during its Presidential tenure.
Thursday, 17 January 2013

The Justice and Home Affairs Council meeting is an important opportunity for ministers from throughout the EU to hear from other justice ministers about how they are dealing with issues that are very real for us - issues such as community safety and combating hate crime

Minister for Justice David Ford MLA,Northern Ireland Department of Justice

David Ford said: "The Justice and Home Affairs Council meeting is an important opportunity for ministers from throughout the EU to hear from other justice ministers about how they are dealing with issues that are very real for us - issues such as community safety and combating hate crime.

"I am able to informally share with delegates our new Community Safety Strategy and how the introduction of the Policing and Community Safety Partnerships will make a real difference to delivering specific projects to local communities.

"In the final session, the President of the Council, Alan Shatter TD, will be updating delegates on the work of the Criminal Assets Bureau in the Republic of Ireland and on cross border co-operation. I will have the opportunity to contribute a local perspective on north-south partnership, with arrangements which are unique in Europe.

"I regularly meet the Minister for Justice and Equality to promote co-operation on criminal justice matters. Alan Shatter and I are pleased that our officials and law enforcement agencies on both sides of the border have developed a strong partnership approach to combat organised crime. We have had great successes in closing down fuel laundering plants and the interception of shipments of counterfeit tobacco products.

“The fight against drugs and people trafficking are also areas where close co-operation has produced successes. I look forward to strengthening relationships further for the mutual benefit of people on both sides of the border and to ensuring that both jurisdictions continue to benefit from such co-operation, both across the border and beyond."

Notes for editors

  1. The Justice and Home Affairs Council comprises member states of the EU and meetings cover areas of mutual interest, such as hate crime, internal security and dealing with criminal assets. This meeting was held in Dublin.
  2. Media enquires should be directed to the Department of Justice Press Office 028 9052 6444. Out of office hours please contact the duty press officer via pager number 07699 715440 and your call will be returned.