PPA employees already asking when can they go to Greece
The couple of dozen officials sent to Greece will not affect the Police and Border Guard Board's (PPA) work, and they are more interested in going on a foreign mission, PPS official Toomas Malva told ETV's "Ringvaade" on Tuesday.
On Monday, Frontex, the European Border and Coast Guard Agency, decided to send emergency aid to Greece to secure the EU's borders. Estonia is ready to send two patrol boats and 20 border guards to Greece to counter the migratory pressure from Turkey, Minister of the Interior Mart Helme (EKRE) said on Tuesday.
According to Toomas Malva, there are already dozens of PPA officials in the area, and sending additional boats and personnel will be decided based on what Greece wishes from Estonia.
Malva, who has been on two very similar missions, mentioned that the PPA's work in Estonia is not affected by the 20 people sent to Greece and that its employees are already calling and asking if and when will they be going to Greece.
"If we expect that others help us, then others expect that we help them," he said.
According to Malva, the activity in Greece will be directed by Frontex, and Estonians can't unilaterally decide what will be done with any border crossers.
"Even though we are going there as a team with Frontex, they are establishing the rules and tactics and, according to my knowledge, we will not be using the tactics that Greek border guard boats have been in pushing people away," he said.
According to Malva, the spread of coronavirus is also affecting foreign missions. "We have sent protective equipment to all of the people on the mission, namely gloves, masks and disinfectant. We are considering that hazard, so the people that go would remain safe," he said.
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Editor: Roberta Vaino