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Monitoring of Joint Return Operation

Representatives of the Department of Prevention and Monitoring of the Public Defender's Office monitored the Joint Return Operation on September 27, 2016. Representatives of the Department of Prevention and Monitoring attended the deportation of 39 Georgian citizens from various European countries at the airport of the German city of Dusseldorf and the Creek capital Athens.

The deported persons were handed over to the escort of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia on board by border police officers of Germany, Switzerland and Greece (in Dusseldorf and Athens). The deportation was coordinated by the European Agency for the Management of Operational Cooperation at the External Borders of the Member States of the European Union FRONTEX.

The process of checking and travelling was monitored non-stop. No force or special means were used during the return operation.

No incident has taken place on board. However, there were a few gaps. In particular, the doctor of the Georgian escort had not been properly informed in advance of the medical conditions and diagnoses of certain persons on board, while one of them had obvious signs of mental disorder.

The National Preventive Mechanism believes that doctors should be fully informed of health conditions and diagnosis of persons on board in order to be ready for providing an appropriate intervention.

Conversation with the deported persons revealed that the sealing of their cell phones and the opportunity to have telephone contact with families a few hours before the deportation are still problematic.

It should be noted that like the previous monitoring, the deported people were allowed to make telephone calls only after the representatives of the Department of Prevention and Monitoring of the Public Defender's Office notified the FRONTEX representatives of the problem.

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