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Readout of Secretary Napolitano’s Remarks at the Migration Policy Institute

Release Date: May 31, 2012

For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
Contact: 202-282-8010

WASHINGTON—Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano today delivered remarks at the Migration Policy Institute’s Transatlantic Council on Migration meeting, underscoring the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) commitment to combating transnational threats while facilitating legitimate trade and travel.

“As threats continue to evolve in an increasingly interconnected world, the challenge of managing legal and illegal flows of people has become more complex,” said Secretary Napolitano. “Addressing these challenges requires a collective and sustained effort, as well as strong partnerships with our international, federal, state, and local partners.”

During her remarks, Secretary Napolitano discussed the Department’s cooperation with international partners to expand information sharing, increase cooperation, and improve our ability to identify and address threats. Secretary Napolitano highlighted the recently ratified Passenger Name Record (PNR) agreement between the United States and the European Union. PNR is an indispensible tool in terrorism prevention efforts, and has aided nearly every high profile U.S. terrorist investigation in recent years, including New York City subway bomber Najibullah Zazi, Times Square bomber Faisal Shahzad, and David Headley, who was involved in the 2008 Mumbai terrorist attack and was planning attacks in Europe.

In addition, DHS, in collaboration with the Departments of Justice and State, has signed Preventing and Combating Serious Crime (PCSC) Agreements with 26 Visa Waiver Program (VWP) countries and two VWP aspirants to share information about terrorists and criminals.

Secretary Napolitano also discussed the U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP) Immigration Advisory Program, which stations CBP officers at foreign airports to enhance security by preventing high-risk passengers from boarding commercial aircrafts destined for the U.S and combating the proliferation of fraudulent travel documents. CBP also utilizes pre-clearance, which allows for the advance screening of passengers and baggage before they reach the United States, and the Global Entry trusted traveler program that allows expedited clearance for pre-approved, low-risk travelers upon arrival in the United States.

The Transatlantic Council on Migration is comprised of members from the policymaking, academia, business, and media fields in Europe and North America, with experience in issues related to migration.

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This page was last reviewed/modified on May 31, 2012.