Ebook: Addressing Security Risks at the Ukrainian Border Through Best Practices on Good Governance
With the current security crisis in the Ukraine, border security has become a pressing issue. Both the annexation of Crimea and the temporary occupation of the Donbas region represent serious violations of the country's territorial integrity and of the wider international legal order.
This book contains 13 presentations delivered during the two-day NATO Advanced Research Workshop (ARW) 'Addressing Security Risks at the Ukrainian Border through Best Practices on Good Governance – Sources and Counter Measures', which took place in Kyiv, Ukraine, in February 2016. The workshop consisted of 5 expert panels devoted to various aspects of building the integrity of the Ukrainian border management agencies to enhance the border security of the eastern flank of NATO. The topics of these panels were: the integrity of the security sector in Ukraine; corruption as a security risk in border management; institutional tools to combat corruption in border management; increasing preparedness for cross-border crises; and bilateral and multilateral dimensions of international cooperation to enhance the integrity of border management agencies.
The workshop contributed to raising awareness of emerging border security challenges, as well as providing a forum for the close cooperation of and the exchange of knowledge between the most relevant local and international agencies. It also made possible the discussion of issues such as the current refugee crisis and the implications - for security - of corruption in border management in a wider context.
This volume contains selected presentations delivered at the Advanced Research Workshop on “Addressing Security Risks at the Ukrainian Border through Best Practices on Good Governance – Sources and Counter Measures” that took place in Kyiv on 25–26 February 2016. The main aim of the joint Polish-Ukrainian initiative, supported by the NATO Science for Peace and Security Programme and organised by the Kosciuszko Institute, Ukrainian Institute for Public Policy as well as the partner Pentacomp, was to discuss the possible incentives to increase the integrity and transparency of the Ukrainian border management agencies.
Border security is a pressing issue for Ukraine, given the current security crisis in the country. Both the illegal annexation of Crimea and the temporary occupation of the Donbas region are severe violations of Ukraine's territorial integrity and the international legal order. Promoting good governance in the State Border Guard Service of Ukraine is one aspect of the problem that needs to be addressed. It is important due to the fact that the “border security of Ukraine shall be considered in a wider context – as border security of the whole Eastern flank of NATO,” as underlined by Yehor Bozhok, Acting Head of the Mission of Ukraine to NATO in his keynote speech that inaugurated the conference. “Current developments in the East are also a vivid example that NATO's partnerships are key to Euro-Atlantic security,” added Michael Gaul, Senior Advisor in NATO's Emerging Security Challenges Division. Therefore, providing support for institutional development and integrity building of border management agencies of Ukraine should be considered as one of the crucial tasks intended for strengthening security and the rule of law in NATO's neighbourhood.
The Advanced Research Workshop on “Addressing Security Risks at the Ukrainian Border through Best Practices on Good Governance – Sources and Counter Measures” gathered 67 participants from 22 countries representing almost 30 different international organisations, government agencies, members of academia, and civil society. They included the Embassy of the Republic of Poland in Kyiv, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Lithuania, the European Union Advisory Mission to Ukraine, the Delegation of the European Union to Ukraine, the European Union Support Group for Ukraine, Frontex (European Agency for the Management of Operational Cooperation at the External Borders), OECD, OSCE, World Customs Organization, DCAF (Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces), Transparency International (from Moldova, Latvia, the UK, Ukraine chapters), the Polish Central Anti-corruption Bureau and representatives of the border management agencies from Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Poland, and Ukraine. Other contributors to the discussions held during the Advanced Research Workshop included members of the Ukrainian parliament. The event was awarded with the honorary patronage of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Poland, the Minister of the Interior and Administration of the Republic of Poland, the Head of the Polish National Security Bureau, the Main Headquarters of the Polish Border Guard, the State Border Guard Service of Ukraine, the Head of the Polish Customs Service – Deputy Minister of Finance of the Republic of Poland and the Ukrainian branch of Transparency International Transparency International – Ukraine.
The two-day event consisted of five expert panels devoted to diverse aspects of building the integrity of Ukrainian border management agencies to enhance the border security of the Eastern flank of NATO. The panel topics were:
• Integrity of the security sector of Ukraine – key to Euro-Atlantic integration of Ukraine
• Corruption as a security risk in border management
• Institutional tools to combat corruption in border management – international experiences
• Increasing preparedness for cross-border crises through enhancing the integrity and transparency of border management agencies
• Bilateral and multilateral dimensions of international cooperation to enhance the integrity of border management agencies: cross-border initiatives, international assistance, and NATO Building Integrity Programme
Twenty-eight presentations were delivered during the event. Each of the five panels was followed by an open discussion and a Q&A session. The Advanced Research Workshop was completed with a conclusive debate which was moderated by the honorary guest, Irina Friz, a member of the National Security and Defence Committee of the Ukrainian parliament.
The Advanced Research Workshop created a unique chance to hold an expert debate on a wide array of emerging border security challenges. This included both security risks resulting from the multiple violations of Ukraine's territorial integrity as well as the negative effects of the current irregular migration trends that affect the EU and NATO. It contributed to raising awareness about military and non-military dimensions of border security that are essential to the maintenance of peace and stability of the Alliance. Debates held during the event included both the diagnosis of the main border security challenges of Ukraine and its neighbouring NATO member states, as well as presented recommendations and solutions that could be applied in order to address them effectively. The format of the event enabled the local actors to present their real needs which were later assessed and discussed in diverse contexts including the sociological, criminological, and legal point of view. Finally, the wide range of border security risks presented was addressed in presentations concerning their possible solutions with recommendations delivered by experts, analysts, and practitioners. In order to increase their applicability to the Ukrainian context, the Advanced Research Workshop engaged a significant number of representatives of countries from the region (Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Poland, etc.) who shared similar experiences or used to face comparable challenges as Ukraine and thus could contribute with important lessons learned.
The event also contributed to rising awareness of the human and social aspects of security related to NATO's strategic objectives. It enhanced the understanding of corruption as a security risk. In Ukraine, corruption emerges as a top priority political challenge in terms of both the internal needs (the lack of integrity hinders any reforms undertaken by the authorities) and external requirements, i.e. international obligations assumed with regard to the Euro-Atlantic integration of Ukraine (e.g. EU visa liberalisation, NATO Building Integrity Programme, Ukraine-NATO annual programmes). What is more, corruption affects key institutions responsible for border management and their personnel and, as a result, undermines the security of the border. Therefore, the prevention of corruption in order to enhance security through integrity, accountability, and transparency should be considered as a key challenge Ukraine faces.
The Advanced Research Workshop contributed to a comprehensive understanding of corruption with regard to border management by providing historical, theoretical, sociological, socio-psychological, anthropological, economic, and legal-institutional perspectives. Firstly, the specific context of the post-Soviet transition must be highlighted, both in terms of the decay of the institutions of the post-totalitarian state, economic collapse, and developed informal network-oriented cultures where corruption is deeply embedded into social and organisational relationship structures and serves to reproduce socio-cultural systems in which improperly functioning state institutions trigger an informal survival mechanism of society. Given the persistence of the “shadow state” in Ukraine – i.e. a vast structure that lies beneath the formal shell of the state aiming at a specific “privatisation” of the public sector and at the same time maintaining the appearance of a functioning formal state – informality remains the realm in which society must exist.
Due to the weakness of the formal state institutions (and their dependency on the shadow state actors and rules), their limited resources in terms of providing public services, corruption might sometimes serve as a tool to increase “personal competitiveness” in order to attain the effective execution of civic rights or claims. What is more, border regions (border crossings) are the areas where law is derogatory, exceptional, and specific. As a result, a huge power and knowledge asymmetry emerges between the people and border management/customs officers. This might lead to diverse infringements as long as the actors are confronted by two contradictory constraints of border control and movement – namely, the formal demand of law enforcement and the informal demand of the seamless movement of people and goods. Therefore, the normative rules and bureaucratic procedures of the cross-border movement and control are usually negotiated (secondarily informalised) by the local actors. All this happens in an environment of structural secrecy because the centralised supervision of the usually remote border lands is difficult.
Additionally, the network aspect must also be taken into account. Here we find that the local actors (smugglers and border officers) have usually known each other for a long time as they come from the same area. What is more, corruption in border management agencies might also be fostered by the phenomenon of particularised trust. It is a specific form of trust between people, an example of which are clan-based societies, where helping each other is more important than impartial relations such as general trust towards the abstract and formal state institutions or normative rules which have proven to be less effective. This creates a potential risk of normalisation of corruption in border management and control through its institutionalisation (corruption becomes routinised), rationalisation (specific self-serving ideologies are developed to justify corruption), and socialisation (newcomers are educated to follow the established informal rules).
Due to a culture of silence which is inherent to total institutions such as “law enforcement agency of special assignments”, in this case the State Border Guard Service of Ukraine, the process might remain incomprehensible for external supervisors. Given the high level of collectiveness, complex interdependencies and an internal hierarchy of such an entity, it is necessary to underline that corruption is rarely a singular act but rather a common code of conduct that enables participants to increase the shared benefits and lower the shared costs. Such a code of conduct includes diverse forms of corruption.
On the one hand, “corruption without theft” is either the extortion of money for services that are free, or else requires extra money beyond official fees. On the other hand, “corruption with theft” covers a wide scope of activities that lead to uncontrolled cross-border movement as a result of which the state is losing resources. Both of the above-mentioned examples refer to the corrupt “privatisation” of the border control which results in a situation where border control agencies no longer work in the interest of the state, but rather serve as a shadow state income producer whose prime aim is to earn profit, not mitigate dangers to the state. Therefore, both phenomena give rise to serious security implications on both side of the border as they affect both neighbouring countries. In the case of Ukraine, such corruption is even more dangerous because it is a neighbouring country of the EU, NATO and Russia. Additionally, corruption leads to the decrease of legitimacy and obedience to the law. Any intensification of these phenomena in neighbouring countries' borderlands would have a very negative impact on the security environment of the Alliance.
According to Transparency International's Government Defence Anti-Corruption Index, Ukraine is placed in Band D, which indicates a high risk of corruption. Interestingly, looking at the details of the ranking, it is evident that what Ukraine lacks the most is the very technical or practical dimensions of corruption prevention. Despite lively debate on corruption and a widely provided international assistance, the procurement procedures or financial packages are still not transparent; tenders are not open for competition; government strategies do not include measurable benchmarks and requirements to be met. Despite organised anti-corruption training, this sector still faces shortcomings in terms of the code of conduct coverage and the code of conduct breaches addressed (values and standards area). This confirms the previously discussed difficulties in implementing anti-corruption measures in the field.
When the relationships between corrupt actors are based on social bonds and interdependencies, top-down policies have major limitations. Simply increasing “formalisation” (through developed legislation, law enforcement, etc.) will rarely work in the area where “informality” serves as a well-established modus vivendi. As a result, the efficiency of anti-corruption measures can be increased by developing a general organisational culture which is intolerant of corruption through a bottom-up organisational approach. What is more, efficient anti-corruption measures should also refer to the socio-anthropological theory of opportunities. Under this framework, corruption occurs when in the absence of a capable guardian a motivated offender (corruptor) finds a suitable target (motivated corruptee). Therefore, in order to combat corruption, all three aspects need to be addressed. This should result in reducing marginal perceived rewards (marginal benefits) and increase the expected costs and risks (marginal costs) of corrupt behaviour at the border.
The Advanced Research Workshop on “Addressing Security Risks at the Ukrainian Border through Best Practices on Good Governance – Sources and Counter Measures” attracted meaningful media attention. The conference received media support from the leading media dealing with the Euro-Atlantic integration and a security policy such as European Pravda (eurointegration.com.ua), Euractiv.pl, defence24.pl or biznesalert.pl. Almost 30 articles concerning the conference were published in English, Polish, and Ukrainian, and were printed by both national press and online media. The event was also promoted in social media reaching 137,563 impressions and 521 engagements, including references made by the Embassy of the Republic of Poland in Kyiv, the Embassy of the United Kingdom in Warsaw, the Consulate of the Republic of Poland in Cologne, Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Polish National Security Bureau, Polish Institute of International Affairs (PISM) and Polish Border Guard. The Advanced Research Workshop was also featured in coverage of the official State Border Guards Service of Ukraine's TV channel.
The Advanced Research Workshop contributed to deepening the comprehensive understanding of corruption and its implications to border security of Ukraine. The issue was presented as a multi-dimensional complex phenomenon that affects the ordinary functioning of state institutions and society. Effective and enduring prevention as well as the fight against corruption were highlighted as the pre-conditions for structural reforms and a fundamental shift in security. The unique aspect of the conference was that it confronted the most recent developments in the interdisciplinary research on corruption in the context of Ukraine, Central-Eastern Europe, and border security and management. It is important to recognise that corruption in the post-communist (Soviet) states of Central and Eastern Europe is a very specific phenomenon caused by the weakness and ineffectiveness of state institutions, endemic social distrust and unsustainable economic development of the post-communist transition. Therefore, the analysis of the shortcomings of integrity, transparency, and governance of the Ukrainian border management agencies has to take into account all the above mentioned factors as well as the aggressive intervention of Russia and the occupation of Crimea and Eastern Ukraine. The Advanced Research Workshop successfully met these demands, leading to the presentation of recommendations and guidelines taking into account the Ukrainian context.
Also, the Advanced Research Workshop contributed to raising awareness of emerging border security challenges. The workshop was a great opportunity to discuss the current refugee crisis in a wider context of increased preparedness for border management crises and risk analysis. Additionally, it afforded an opportunity to discuss the possible perspectives of the development of the refugee crisis. One of the possible scenarios considered is the establishment of the new Black Sea migration route that would directly affect Ukraine, Poland, and Belarus. Also, the current changing tendencies of migration and asylum applications in Ukraine were discussed. Moreover, the current problems of Ukraine were presented as a challenge and a threat that need to be addressed by NATO.
Close cooperation with the Bureau of International Cooperation of the Main Headquarters of the Polish Border Guard during the preparation stage for the Advanced Research Workshop enabled the organisers to contact all of the border management agencies of Central and Eastern Europe (Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Romania, and Slovakia). Some of them decided to send their representatives to the event. All of them were interested in the outcomes of the project and expressed their desire to see the guidelines and recommendations published within the NATO Science Series. This shows that the Advanced Research Workshop touched upon a very important and acute problem. The creation of a network among the relevant institutions could contribute to increasing the integrity, transparency, and security of the borders of the whole Eastern flank of NATO. As a consequence, it could also enhance cooperation among the border management agencies in the context of the establishment of the European Border and Coast Guard as well as the European Union's operational and technical strategy for European integrated border management. Finally, the participation of the respective institutions of the region safeguards the actual implementation of the Advanced Research Workshop's findings as all of them will be interested in their implementation in the partner countries.
Finally, the conference served as a meeting forum for the main international institutions involved in the reform assistance and policy advice for the Ukrainian authorities in their relevant fields. They include the European Union Advisory Mission to Ukraine (Strategic Border Guard and Advisory Unit), Delegation of the European Union to Ukraine, European Union Support Group for Ukraine, NATO Liaison Office in Ukraine, OSCE, OECD, Frontex, DCAF, ICMPD and the representatives of the Embassy of the Republic of Poland in Kyiv. Also, the representatives of the national institutions invited to the event shared their extensive international experience in the field (e.g. the representative of the Polish Central Anti-Corruption Bureau previously served in the European Union Border Assistance Mission to Moldova and Ukraine, or the representative of the Polish Customs Service in charge of the twinning project supporting the State Fiscal Service of Ukraine). In short, the Advanced Research Workshop contributed to enhancing close cooperation and exchange of knowledge between the most relevant entities engaged in the reform process of the Ukrainian border management agencies. This should also facilitate a subsequent satisfactory continuation of the project.
Rafał Kęsek, Maxim Boroda, Ziemowit Jóźwik
Increasing the effectiveness of border security of Ukraine requires further improvement of Integrated Border Management. The key element of the effective counteraction of transnational crimes on the border is the development of mutual relations, close interaction and cooperation with the European partners, especially within the format of conducting common risk analysis and joint work of operational structures. New challenges and threats prompted the review of the doctrinal provisions of the formation and implementation of the modern border security policy.
The purpose of this article is to describe possible conceptual approaches to the renewal of control over the state border of Ukraine with the Russian Federation under the circumstances of the military aggression and temporary occupation of the sovereign territory of Ukraine by Russia. With regard to the usage of the only political-diplomatic means of conflict solving, two conceptual approaches were developed. The first one focuses on the assistance of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine. The second one touches upon the deployment of the OSCE Police Armed Mission on the territory of the temporarily uncontrolled districts of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions of Ukraine.
The purpose of this article is to consider the features of different routes of illegal migration to Europe. Thus we will reveal in more details the specifics of two routes: the Central Mediterranean route and the route through the eastern borders of the EU. The first of them focuses on a number of criminogenic threats regarding migrants. The second is considered as an interesting one taking into account the nature of our professional activity.
Since independence, Ukraine and the international community have spent, allegedly with little results, a substantial amount of resources trying to reduce the role of informal practices, and corruption, in a variety of sectors. This essay proposes several reasons behind the failure of these measures and their incapacity to bring about a substantial change. First, the use of an excessively comprehensive definition of corruption has prompted domestic and international actors to concentrate their efforts on fighting a too vast variety of practices, resulting in excessive spreading of resources. Second, there has been limited attention to the issue of state trust and the possibility that informal practices are a way to bypass a state in which few believe or are willing to take into account for their daily life. Finally, domestic and international interventions have tended to take for granted certain mechanisms and institutions that, failing to consolidate, have not been able to support reforms the way they were intended to be.
Corruption in the defence sector diminishes public trust, reduces military effectiveness, and damages the legitimacy of the state. In Ukraine, high levels of corruption are having an impact in the conflict in the East. Despite some reform efforts, tackling corruption remains a vital need. Drawing on the findings of the Government Defence Anti-Corruption Index 2015, published by Transparency International, this paper examines the main corruption risks facing the Ukrainian defence establishment. It identifies policy and budget transparency, procurement, operations, personnel and public engagement as key corruption risk areas, and makes recommendations for reform.
This analysis contains the characteristics of the operation of Ukrainian checkpoints located on the so-called demarcation line in eastern Ukraine and on the administrative border with Crimea. The operation of checkpoints is analysed in the context of real and potential risks related to corruption.
This article argues that anti-corruption is not just a set of technical tools, but a complex political exercise in modernisation that mobilises key resources and different categories of actors. It shows that, historically, the international community's concern with good governance in Ukraine has been materialised in the form of numerous anti-corruption conditions attached to transnational aid flows. Despite important improvements at institutional levels, the local practices and everyday routines have not changed fundamentally. The article develops a more nuanced explanation of the new “war on corruption” in Ukraine by focusing on three main elements: actors, institutions, and practices of anti-corruption.
Armed forces and security agencies are highly trusted national institutions. However, that does not make them unsusceptible to corruption. Even minor cases of corruption damage their reputation and impact their capacity to protect the country and people. If not curbed, corruption may permeate the fabric of security institutions and allow “state capture”. With this understanding, allies and NATO partners launched the Building Integrity (BI) initiative. This paper presents the activities of the Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces (DCAF) in this initiative and the follow-up programme. DCAF's approach to the problem of corruption in security and defence organisations builds on an evolving body of knowledge and experience, setting BI activities in security sector governance and an institution building framework. The paper presents DCAF's approach, along with the statement that the key to the effectiveness of future counter-corruption efforts and sustainable international support is the collection and sharing of data and evidence on corruption in security and defence and the effectiveness of BI programmes.
Based on both theoretical underpinning and empirical knowledge, this paper addresses the issue of corruption in customs through the analysis of the conditions necessary for the implementation of successful anti-corruption policies. It aims to provide an intellectual framework, a mode of thinking that could be used in Ukraine and beyond, rather than a model to follow. To reach this objective, the paper addresses a number of areas, starting from exploring the specificity of corruption at borders and particularly in customs. The reflection proceeds by providing counter-arguments to some common ideas on the fight against corruption, exploring the political choices that should serve as a basis for any reflection on anti-corruption policies, and proposing an extensive use of quantification or the ‘reform by numbers’. Drawing upon this analysis, the paper develops four conditions necessary for the design of the anti-corruption instruments in customs that could eventually lead to containing this scourge.
Corruption experiences on both sides of the Finnish-Russian border were studied using written questionnaires or interviews with police, customs and border authority representatives, as well as business people active in the region of the border. Finnish business people engaged in road transports were the only category of respondents who volunteered information on victimisation to corruption by the representatives of the Russian authorities. These respondents described a large variety of systematic extortions of bribes under numerous pretexts.
The following material will address the present situation of the occupied regions of Georgia and provide examples of corruption at the occupation line. The first part will focus on the general circumstances in two of Georgia's occupied territories: the Tskhinvali region and Abkhazia. The aspect of the so-called “crawling occupation” will be highlighted. The next part of the article will be dedicated to the topic of the freedom of movement in the occupied territories and problems related to the transportation of goods, as well as related facts of corruption.The last part will present information about instances of kidnapping by the so-called “border guards” of the Russian occupying regime as one of the sources of corruption.The final part of the article will emphasize the importance of international instruments for the solution of the above-mentioned humanitarian problems.
This research paper touches upon aspects like prevention and fight against corruption and the role of the Latvian Law Enforcement authorities and non-governmental organisations in this area, as well as the State Border Guard of the Republic of Latvia and structures within the State Border Guard of the Republic of Latvia responsible for prevention and fight against corruption.
Armenia is currently suffering from various internal and external challenges: closed borders, dependence on foreign capital, unresolved conflict, systemic corruption, oligarchy and monopolies. Such challenges are negatively affecting the country's economy and endangering the development of small- and medium-sized enterprises. This paper identifies the major economic and international trade challenges for Armenian business entities and suggests possible activities the civil society can implement to address these issues.