Coalition Provisional Authority
Contact: Shane Wolfe
STATEMENT BY AMBASSADOR BREMER
Baghdad, Iraq…March 13, 2004 – Ambassador L. Paul Bremer III,
Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA) administrator, today issued the following
statement on our new border security initiative:
“Foreign terrorists are present in Iraq. The numbers are not
known with precision, but recent attacks and their continuing presence
underscores the importance of improving security at Iraq’s borders.
“That is why we are accelerating border security efforts. This program is the
first stage in a multi-stage effort to address security problems exacerbated
by Iraq’s porous borders. But it will also assure that when we turn over
sovereignty to an Iraqi government on June 30 that government will have the
equipment, staff, training and materials necessary to operate each of its 20
major border crossing points.
“We will monitor, limit and control to limit and control the number of people
crossing into Iraq from other nations.
“We will do this with a combination of increased personnel, new technology and
• Right now there are about 8,000 law enforcement personnel devoted to border
security. We will double that number and then determine if more are needed.
• We have tested and will begin deploying a system called PISCES—a system to
positively ID everyone entering or leaving Iraq.
• Beginning with the Iranian border, we will limit the number of Ports of
Entry across Iraq’s borders. The Iran-Iraq border will be reduced to three
Ports of Entry. All visitors arriving to Iraq by land will need to present a
passport, fill out an entry form, be issued a temporary entry period, and be
entered into an immigration monitoring system.
• Data from entry cards will be loaded into the PISCES system, which will also
provide Border Enforcement officials a means to conduct checks for wanted
subjects and provide a photograph of each visitor.
“We expect this process will increase security without unduly burdening
legitimate travelers or commerce.
“We are aware of and have taken into account the importance of religious
pilgrims visiting Iraq’s holy sites. Special procedures will be put into place
to accommodate increased flows during religious holidays.
“We recognize the challenges inherent in trying to secure Iraq’s porous
borders. But we must continue to do more. We owe this to the Iraqi people.
And, having consulted with the Iraqi Minister of Interior and other Iraqi
officials, we will begin implementation of this program.”
Note: Dan Senor, CPA spokesman, and BG Mark Kimmitt, CJTF7
Deputy Chief of Operations will be available to answer questions about this
border security initiative today at their 5pm briefing at the Baghdad Convention