Staff Reporter
THERE have been reports in the media that part of the national police force will be transferred to the Peninsula over the next few weeks. The response of the local government has been immediate. “The Balearic government cannot consent to a reduction in the presence of the national police” as this would “break the trend which began at the end of last year, to raise the general margins of security,” Balearic minister of the interior José Maria Rodriguez said yesterday.

He said that as a result of the media reports, he was seeking an urgent meeting with the central minister, José Antonio Alonso “to confirm the truth of the reports.” And, he added, if they are true, he would “ask that no officers should be transferred from the islands.” He went on to say that it was “incomprehensible that events which require special security measures (such as the forthcoming royal wedding) should be carried out by reducing the presence of police in the Balearics.” He pointed out that some regions had their own police forces, which was not the case in the Balearics.

He said that the decision to move the police was “unjust and arbitrary” and it eroded the efforts which the Balearic government was making to train new officers and improve citizen security.

He pointed out that a new force of 120 tourist police has just been set up and will be operating in the biggest tourist resorts this summer.
He lamented the fact that the decision to transfer officers should be taken just when the high season was starting and as a result, there were more people in the Balearics.

Minister Rodriguez went on to say that it wasn't “possible that the promises to increase the national police force should now be translated into the transfer of police officers to other destinations.” Rodríguez said “a permanent effort should be made so that residents of this community and the millions of visitors who come here every year should receive the attention they need in the field
The Balearics have no regional police force under the control of the local government. Security is provided by local police forces, dependant on town and village councils, national police officers and the Guardia Civil.

In summer, the number of national police officers is usually increased, to provide greater security during the tourist season, when the population swells, and also to provide security for the Spanish royal family, who traditionally spend the month of August here, at Marivent Palace.

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