Mafia experts to help Macedonia fight organized crime
January 26, 2007 4:06 PM
SKOPJE, Macedonia-Italian experts who deal with the Mafia will help
train Macedonian police in fighting organized crime as part of a program
funded by the European Union, officials said Wednesday.
Justice Minister Mihajlo Manevski said the two-year project will promote
contacts with Italy's Ministry of Justice and the International Institute
of Higher Studies in Criminal Sciences, based in Sicily, as well as Italian
police officers who deal with organized crime.
"This project is timely. Macedonia has intensified its efforts to reform
the judiciary system and is resolved to give the battle against organized
crime and corruption the highest priority," Manevski said.
Macedonia is hoping to start EU-entry talks next year, and has promised
to crack down on organized crime networks as part of those commitments.
The Italian experts will help in a review of Macedonia's legislative
framework, recruit some 40 crime-fighting experts, provide training seminars,
and help upgrade crime-fighting data systems.
The project is being sponsored by the European Agency for Reconstruction.