To address cross-border cooperation issues arising from the European Union's eastward expansion and to strengthen dialogue on asylum and irregular migration issues among countries along the eastern borders of the European Union, a proactive initiative “Operation Soderkoping” was launched in early 2001. The process includes Belarus, Estonia, and Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Poland, Romania, Slovakia and Ukraine are supported by the European Commission, the Swedish Migration Board, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and the International Organization for Migration.
The Secretariat for Cross-Border Cooperation / Soderkoping Process (CBCP) was established in May 2003 by the European Commission project to act as a service and coordination center on behalf of countries and organizations participating in the Soderkoping process.
The European Union's eastward expansion called for partnership and strengthening cross-border cooperation between the newly independent Western states (NIS) and the European Union. In early 2001, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and the Swedish Migration Board (SMB) jointly launched a proactive initiative to promote dialogue on asylum and irregular migration issues between countries along the eastern border of the European Union in the future. The initiative was named "Operation Sudkking", after the town of Sudkking in Sweden, where the first meeting took place. The conference was attended by senior immigration and border management officials from Belarus, Lithuania, Poland and Ukraine, as well as representatives of the Swedish government, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the European Commission and the International Organization for Migration.
The strategic objective of the Sudkking Process is to facilitate cross-border cooperation between the new EU member states, candidate countries and newly independent Western countries on asylum, immigration and border management issues.
Since 2001, Operation Sudkking has grown to now include ten countries located along the expanded European Union's borders: Belarus, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, and Ukraine. This process is supported by the European Commission, IOM, SMB and the Commission.
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