"Electronic Shield" launched in Evros

On Wednesday, trial operation of the new automated border control system, located at the border in Evros, began.

It is a network of long-range cameras and radars that have recently been installed along the Greek-Turkish border and transmit real-time images and data on border conditions. The test period will last for one month. The system is expected to be fully operational on November 20.

The network consists of 11 cameras and radars with a range of 3.5 to 15 kilometers within Turkish territory. They provide what officials call “early detection”. From now on, they will be able to identify and record the movements of, among other things, illegal immigrants, before they approach Greek territory.

On a plot of 100 km

The cameras cover an area of ​​several kilometers from the settlement of Sofiko to the Evros River Delta in Alexandroupoli, at a distance of over 100 kilometers. As detailed in the project announcement, images and data from cameras and radars are transmitted to four local (TEK) and two regional (PEK) operations centers, as well as to the Main Police Department at Katehaki Avenue.

Four fuel and energy complexes were created specifically to support the work of the security system: the first at the police school in Didimoteicho, and the other three at the border departments of Soufli, Tihero and Feres. The two PEKs are respectively located in Orestiada and Alexandroupoli.

Yesterday, on the first, in fact, day of testing, the police began work in the operations centers early in the morning and checked the functionality of the system together with the company that provides technical support for the project.

A project worth 14.9 million euros

The project has a budget of 14.9 million euros and is funded by the EU. and, in particular, the Homeland Security Foundation (DG Home). The project was first announced in December 2016, when the European Commission agreed to fund it amid European concerns about a new wave of migration flows similar to the one seen in 2015.

The contract was signed on November 22, 2019 with contractors OTE and Space Hellas. The automated system is now ready to run. Completed work on the construction of a new fence, with a total length of 27 km. The first 9 km are located in the Petalo area of ​​Feron, the next 15 km – in the Tsirozi Estate (Κτήματος Τσιρόζη), and another 2.5 km – in the Nea Egnatia area. Another 25 cameras have been operating for several years along the Greek-Turkish land border from Kastanya to Nea Visa. However, these are short-range cameras, many of which are experiencing technical problems due to long-term use.

The launch of this system means that Greece, despite the pressure from the EU, actually prepared for the expected wave of migrants from Afghanistan in the near future, as well as for possible breakthroughs of any illegal immigrants from the Turkish border.

The main thing is that Brussels does not force the border to be opened …

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