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Border control gets hi-tech boost from Canada-funded initiative

Nov 25. 2018
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By The Nation

To ensure the safety of vulnerable migrant workers, the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) last week gave the Royal Thai Police Cadet Academy an online learning portal to assist training in detecting fraudulent travel documents, people smuggling and transnational crime.

The portal was developed to complement training materials jointly developed by IOM and the academy that cover 16 of the 28 modules in the Bali Process Curriculum on Standardised Induction Training for Frontline Border Officials.

“Irregular migration induced by smugglers and traffickers undermines the security of states and puts migrants in vulnerable situations,” said IOM Thailand chief of mission Dana Graber Ladek. 

“Cadets who go on to become police officers will be well placed to intercept and intervene to ensure the safety and protection of vulnerable migrants.”

The portal’s handover on November 21 also marked completion of the third phase of a Canadian-funded IOM project “Strengthening Border Management and Intelligence Capacity of Thai Government Officials”. 

The project has trained 613 officers since August 2016, as well as 57 teachers from the police force, its constituent bodies and other government agencies. 

The training covered detection of fraudulent travel documents, cyber-security, information management, inter-agency cooperation and victim identification and assistance.

Fifty-five immigration officials and police officers from Cambodia, Malaysia and Myanmar were also coached on international policing and cooperation in sessions conducted jointly with the Thai Immigration Bureau. 

The project also addressed border management with the introduction of five Verifier Travel Document and Bearer (TD&B) workstations at Thai border checkpoints. 

Developed by IOM, the Verifier TD&B is an automated, standalone system designed to help border officers conduct secondary inspections quickly and efficiently.

Eight workstations are now in operation at key border checkpoints across Thailand, including at Suvarnabhumi, Don Mueang, Chiang Mai and Phuket airports, Nong Khai, Sadao in Songkhla and Aranyaprathet in Sa Kaew.

Since the TD&B system was introduced in Thailand in 2014, 215 fraudulent passports and 154 imposters have been identified.

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