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Community Police spreads to 9 more localities in Malta

Community Police spreads to 9 more localities in Malta

Community policing is underway in 12 areas of the Maltese archipelago where it has proved to be a success

Community police will patrol nine other localities in Malta from this spring, including areas which face specific challenges, reports TVM. The announcement has been made recently during an analysis of the Community Police performance in the first 12 areas of the archipelago where the service has been introduced.

Community cooperation a boost to police efficacy

The concept of Community Policing was launched two years ago in Mellieha, spreading to 11 more localities. The obtained results have shown that the Police Force is more effective in its crime response and prevention efforts if the community becomes a partner in its operations.

To date, Community Police officers have performed 9,500 hours of rounds on foot and 4,000 kms of rounds on bicycle in the 12 localities, reported Police Commissioner Angelo Gafà. He said that residents in Mellieha and Fgura have not spared words of praise for the patrolling officers. The Police Commissioner informed that right now there are 25 officers working as Community Police and 31 more are undergoing training so that this service can be further extended.

Specific challenges

The next locations to have Community Police are: St Julian’s, Cospicua, Vittoriosa, Senglea, Kalkara, Hamrun, Santa Venera, Marsa and Tarxien. Some of these places face specific challenges such as Marsa and Hamrun where foreigners, who have arrived in Malta in an irregular way, have settled.

“Towards the end of this year we will see another extension of this service until it is spread throughout the country to ensure that communities with better collaboration with the Police Force will lead to safer neighbourhoods,”  Minister for Home Affairs and National Security, Byron Camilleri, said during the review. He envisages that  Community Police will set foot in every town and village in Malta and Gozo by 2023.

Low crime rate

Crime rates in Malta have historically been low compared to other EU member states, with 31 instances of crime for every 1,000 inhabitants, while the EU average stands at 59 cases per 1,000 population. Despite increase in population and tourist numbers, reports of crime in Malta have marked a 10 percent decrease over a three year period prior to 2020, according to an annual police report quoted by Malta Today. Malta is geographically close to North Africa and the Middle East, but notwithstanding that, the island nation has encountered no major terrorist threat so far.

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