News

06.05.2020.

Daniel Markić reappointed SOA Director

Daniel Markić, current Director of the SOA, has been awarded another mandate starting on 6th May 2020 by the decision co-signed by the President of the Republic of Croatia Zoran Milanović and Prime Minister Andrej Plenković.

 

The mandate of the SOA Director lasts four years.

 

Daniel Markić has been serving as the SOA Director since 5th May 2016.


27.02.2020.

23 European countries sign Letter of Intent of establishing the Intelligence College in Europe

On 26th February 2020, 23 European countries gathered in Zagreb to sign the Letter of Intent of establishing the Intelligence College in Europe.

 

The ceremony of signing of the Letter was organized by the Croatian Security and Intelligence Agency (SOA) in cooperation with the temporary College Secretariat based in Paris. It was followed by a panel discussion on the European security and intelligence cooperation, featuring representatives of the European intelligence communities.

 

The panel was inaugurated by the Director of SOA Daniel Markić and Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenković.

 

The Intelligence College in Europe is an intergovernmental project bringing together European national security and intelligence communities to promote strategic dialogue between:

  • European security and intelligence communities, providing opportunity for members of different services to meet, share and compare their experiences and know-how at a non-operational level;
  • security and intelligence communities and members of the Academia, through publications and academic programs dedicated to security and intelligence professionals;
  • security and intelligence communities, national and European decision-makers and citizens, to raise awareness on security and intelligence issues and challenges.

 

22 countries joined Croatia as members of the College: France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Hungary, Portugal, Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Norway, Romania, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


06.02.2020.

SOA Director Meets European Commission VP Margaritis Schinas to Discuss CTG

Representing the Counter Terrorism Group (CTG), European Commission VP Margaritis Schinas met with SOA Director Mr. Daniel Markić on 5 February 2020.

 

The topics of discussion included modalities for cooperation between EU institutions and the CTG with the objective of strengthening European security.

 

CTG includes intelligence and security services of EU Member States, Norway and Switzerland. SOA took over the presidency of CTG on 1 January 2020.

 

Among other things, VP Schinas coordinates European Commission’s work at developing the Security Union, ensuring compatibility between external and internal security dimensions and coordinating European Commission’s efforts in strengthening measures for prevention, detection and response to hybrid threats.


29.01.2020.

SOA Director Gives Presentation at Cybertech 2020 Conference in Tel Aviv

As part of the plenary of the Cybertech 2020 global conference taking place 28–30 January 2020 in Tel Aviv, Israel, SOA Director Mr. Daniel Markić gave a presentation on the role of the Security-Intelligence Agency in protecting national cyberspace on 29 January 2020.

 

Cybertech is the cyber industry’s networking platform organising industry-related events all around the globe. Cybertech conferences serve as the go-to place to make business happen and discuss technological innovations, challenges, and solutions to combating global cyber threats.

 

Mr. Markić’s presentation opened the conference, mentioning the impact of technological changes on the security and intelligence industry, and development of new capabilities and digital transformation of SOA’s activities. He referred in particular to SOA’s proactivity in order to protect Croatia’s national cyber space from cyber threats. Mr. Markić underlined the role of SOA’s Cyber Centre as a milestone in developing new capabilities. SOA’s Cyber Centre relies on the potential that SOA has and that it develops in four segments: human resources, advanced technologies, national and international partnerships and information. The Centre acts as a bridge between security-intelligence work and advanced technologies in the area of cyber security.

 

Other speakers at the Conference include top executives from the cyber industry, decision-makers from various countries, technology professionals, investors, entrepreneurs and others.

 


24.01.2020.

Joint Visit to Spain’s Security Authorities by SOA and Poland’s ABW

The joint delegation of Security and Intelligence Agency (SOA) and Poland’s Internal Security Agency (ABW) had consultation meetings with Spain’s security authorities 14–15 January 2020 in Madrid, the Kingdom of Spain. SOA Delegation was headed by SOA Director Mr. Daniel Markić.

 

Meetings were held with Spain’s National Intelligence Centre (CNI), Intelligence Centre for Counter-Terrorism and Organized Crime (CITCO) and law enforcement agencies Guardia Civil and Policía Nacional.

 

The meetings covered the role of services and authorities in preventing and combatting terrorism, radicalisation and role in immigration processes.

 

The ABW and SOA have partnered up to implement EU project aimed at enhancing institutional capacities related to national security. The project is co-financed by the European Social Fund.


24.01.2020.

EU Counter-Terrorism Coordinator Visits SOA

European Union’s Counter-terrorism Coordinator Gilles de Kerchove visited the Security Intelligence Agency on 23 January 2020.

 

Activities that SOA is carrying out in preventing and combating terrorism were presented to Mr. de Kerchove, as well as priorities of SOA’s presidency of the Counter Terrorism Group (CTG). CTG includes intelligence and security services of EU Member States, Norway and Switzerland. In parallel with the Republic of Croatia’s presidency of the Council of the EU, SOA took over the presidency of CTG on 1 January 2020.

 

Gilles de Kerchove plays a crucial role in promoting the counter-terrorism debate within the EU and he sends regular reports to the Council of the EU on implementation of counter-terrorism measures at EU level. He also cooperates closely with EU institutions to enhance EU’s counter-terrorism efforts.

 


24.01.2020.

Europol Director Visits SOA

Europol Director Catherine De Bolle visited the Security Intelligence Agency on 23 January 2020.

 

The meeting focused on current security matters, such as international terrorism, organised crime and illegal migrations. Priorities of SOA’s presidency of the Counter Terrorism Group (CTG) were presented to Ms. De Bolle. CTG includes intelligence and security services of EU Member States, Norway and Switzerland. In parallel with the Republic of Croatia’s presidency of the Council of the EU, SOA took over the presidency of CTG on 1 January 2020.

 

The European Union Agency for Law Enforcement Cooperation (Europol) is the law enforcement agency of the EU tasked with assisting law enforcement authorities of EU Member States. Europol Director is appointed by the Council of the EU.

 


25.11.2019.

SOA Director Daniel Markić at Halifax International Security Forum

SOA Director Daniel Markić participated in the 11th annual Halifax International Security Forum that took place in Halifax, Canada, 22–24 November 2019.

 

Halifax Security Forum is the leading annual conference on security, defense and foreign affairs in North America. The number of participants is limited to 300 persons from more than 80 countries. The Forum convenes democratic leaders, experts and scientists, as well as managers and decision-makers in both public and private sectors from all over the world.

 

Halifax International Security Forum was founded in 2009 as a program within the German Marshall Fund of the United States. Forum is dedicated to strengthening strategic cooperation among democracies and is recognized as the leading gathering of democratic leaders committed to global security and prosperity.

 

 “This weekend we addressed a range of global issues, notably China and the need for a comprehensive strategy to address it, the ongoing challenges in Ukraine, US leadership in the world, and how countries need to adapt to technological and political changes,” Forum President Mr. Peter Van Praagh said in a statement.

 

A special plenary session addressed women’s contributions to global peace and security.


25.11.2019.

The Joint expert visit of SOA and Polish ABW in Berlin

On October 29, 2019, a delegation of the Croatian Security and Intelligence Service (SOA) and the Terrorism Prevention Centre of Excellence of the Poland's Internal Security Agency (ABW) within ongoing project to improve cooperation in the field of internal security held an meeting at the expert level, which took place with the Joint Counter-Terrorism Centre in Berlin (GTAZ).

 

The German Centre is an institution responsible for coordinating the cooperation of special services and law enforcement authorities (police, customs) and military bodies in Germany in the context of Islamist terrorist threats. During the meeting, issues related to the organization of the Center and exchange of information between the entities involved at the federal and international level were raised. At the same time, the role of GTAZ in the area of prevention and research programs to counteract radicalization was emphasized.

 

The Polish-Croatian delegation to Germany contributed to the information exchange on terrorism prevention with German anti-terrorist institutions. On the next day of the delegation, a meeting was held with experts from other German institutions responsible for internal and external security (BMI, BND)


10.11.2019.

SOA Director and associates on October visit to USA and Canada

SOA Director Daniel Markić and his associates visited USA on 21 – 23 October 2019. SOA delegation travelled to USA together with the delegation from the Terrorism Prevention Centre of Excellence of the Polish security service ABW as part of SOA and ABW’s joint EU project of enhancing national security.

 

The visit included high-level meetings between Croatian and Polish officials and American institutions.

 

One of the meetings was held at the USA National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC) on the subject of combating terrorism and preventing extremism. Concrete issues were also tackled, such as preventing dissemination of terrorist content online.

 

The final day of the trip was reserved for talks at the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).

 

Along with the visit to USA, SOA delegation, led by Director, and Polish partners on 7 – 11 October 2019 held consultation meetings with the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) and Integrated Terrorism Assessment Centre (ITAC). The meetings dealt with the issue of preventing and combatting terrorism.


16.10.2019.

SOA Director in panel discussion on fake news and disinformation during the European Commission's Security Symposium

On 15 October 2019, SOA Director Daniel Markić took part in panel discussion on fake news and disinformation as part of the European Commission's 14th Annual Security Symposium.

 

Mr. Markić shared the floor with Madeline de Cock Buning, Chairwoman of the HLEG on Fake news and Disinformation, Alastair Macdonald, Reuters Bureau Chief in Brussels and prof. dr. Iryna Gurevych from Department of Computer Science at Technical University in Darmstadt. The discussion was moderated by Shada Islam, Director of Policy in the Friends of Europe think-tank.

 

Mr. Markić stressed the complexity of hybrid threats and disinformation campaign and presented the panel with the role of security and intelligence system in their prevention, identification and suppression. SOA Director cited adjustments the Republic of Croatia made through the concept of homeland security to respond to new security challenges such as hybrid threats. They call for strengthening the resilience of the entire society, close inter-departmental cooperation, involvement of outside actors such as the academia and private sector as well as intense international cooperation, especially through NATO and EU framework. To illustrate disinformation operations, Mr. Markić mentioned the case of fake news spread by the media and certain officials of a neighboring country, claiming that SOA had been encouraging terrorism on their territory. Further details on this case may be found in SOA’s most recent Public Report.

 

The Symposium also included speeches by Sir Julian King, European Commissioner for Security Union, Dick Schoof, Director-General of the Dutch General Intelligence and Security Services (AIVD), Paraskevi Michou, Head of Directorate-General for Migration and Home Affairs of the European Commission, Lucille Rolland, Head of Central Service of Territorial Surveillance, Bart Somers, Mayor of the City of Mechelen, prof. dr. David Betz from the London King's College and Gunther H. Oettinger, European Commissioner for Budget and Human Resources.

 

European Commission’s Security Symposium is an annual event that brings together representatives of all EU institutions and agencies (EUROPOL, FRONTEX etc.) as well as security experts.

 


06.09.2019.

SOA Director meets Europol Executive Director

On 5 September 2019, SOA Director Daniel Markić and Polish security service ABW Deputy Director Bernard Boguslawski met with Europol Executive Director Catherine De Bolle at Europol HQ in The Hague, the Netherlands.

 

The meeting was part of activities on the EU project of boosting institutional capacities in the area of national security jointly run by SOA and ABW’s Terrorism Prevention Center of Excellence.

 

Participants addressed current security issues such as international terrorism, organized crime and illegal migrations.

 

European Police Office (Europol) is the EU law enforcement agency tasked with assisting EU Member States national law enforcement bodies. Europol Executive and Deputy Directors are appointed by the EU Council of Ministers for Justice and Home Affairs.

 


06.08.2019.

SOA Director at Aspen Security Forum

SOA Director, Daniel Markić was invited to take part at the Aspen Security Forum held in Aspen, USA from 17 to 20 July 2019.

 

This is the tenth edition of the security forum organized by the Aspen Institute, aiming at responding to current key issues of national and homeland security. Top incumbent and former officials of relevant authorities in charge of national and homeland security, managers of businesses working in the field of national security as well as academia members and journalists are among those taking part in the forum.

 

This year's Forum was inaugurated by NATO Secretary General, Jens Stoltenberg.


06.08.2019.

SOA and Polish ABW pursue their cooperation on the joint EU project for terrorism prevention

SOA and Terrorism Prevention Center of Excellence (TPCoE) of Polish CI service ABW held expert consultations on 9 and 10 July 2019 in Split, as part of their joint EU project of strengthening institutional capacities in the area of national security.

 

The talks focused on key issues related to the Center's activity at the international and national level as well as related to strategic plans for the future, which include: launching a security campaign, establishment of an e-learning tool and hosting international terrorism prevention conference on the occasion of the second anniversary of the Centre in 2020.

 

During the meeting, the role of the abovementioned services and institutions in the context of prevention and counter-terrorism was discussed and a scope of counter multi-agency measures in the process of radicalization was analyzed. Furthermore identification of challenges related to illegal immigration were pointed out.


21.05.2019.

First anniversary of the EU project jointly run by SOA and Polish security service ABW

Security and Intelligence Agency (SOA) partnered up with Internal Security Agency (ABW) of the Republic of Poland to carry out the project "Raising capabilities of national security services, public administration staff and research and development centers and developing their cooperation in the domain of national security". The project is co-financed by the European Social Fund.

 

The Agreement on partnership in this project was signed on 22 May 2018 by SOA and ABW directors, on the occasion of inauguration of The Terrorism Prevention Centre of Excellence of ABW.

 

Benefiting from transnational experience, the project aims to prepare the public administration for a more efficient identification and prevention of terrorist and asymmetric threats.

 

To inform the domestic and international public about the project, the Polish side has set up a special site dedicated to The Terrorism Prevention Centre of Excellence of ABW and the project itself - https://tpcoe.gov.pl/cpe


21.05.2019.

NATO Counter Terrorism Panel co-organized by SOA and Slovenian SOVA

NATO security and intelligence panel on fighting terrorism is being held in Opatija, co-organized by SOA and Slovenian Security and Intelligence Agency (SOVA).

 

More than 100 experts from about 30 NATO members states and bodies as well as partner countries will take part in two-day discussions on measures and activities concerning the prevention and fight against terrorism.

 

 

The Panel welcomes directors of military and civil security and intelligence agencies (from left to right): Goran Vasilevski (Military Security and Intelligence Agency of the Republic of North Macedonia), BG Ivica Kinder (Military Security and Intelligence Agency of the Republic of Croatia), Dejan Matijevič (Military Intelligence and Security Service of the Republic of Slovenia’s Ministry of Defence), Daniel Markić (Security and Intelligence Agency of the Republic of Croatia), Rajko Kozmelj (Slovenian Security and Intelligence Agency), Goran Nikolovski (Administration for Security and Counterintelligence of the Republic of North Macedonia’s Ministry of Internal Affairs), Zoran Ivanov (Intelligence Agency of the Republic of North Macedonia)

 


06.03.2019.

SOA Director at the inaugural session of the Intelligence College in Europe in France

On 4 – 5 March 2019, SOA Director Daniel Markić took part in the inaugural session of the Intelligence College in Europe in Paris, France.

 

The Intelligence College in Europe (Collège du renseignement en Europe) is a platform for the exchange of non-operational information aiming to establish a common, European strategic intelligence culture in the context of global security and geopolitical changes.

 

SOA Director was one of the four heads of services taking part in the round table, along with directors of the French internal (DGSI) and external (DGSE) security services and director of the Spanish security and intelligence service (CNI).

 

The round table was closed by the French President Emmanuel Macron, who was behind the idea of establishing The Intelligence College in Europe as put forward in the speech he gave at the Sorbonne in September 2017, discussing the "united and democratically sovereign Europe".

 


18.02.2019.

SOA Director Daniel Markić at the 55th Munich Security Conference

Director of the Security and Intelligence Agency Daniel Markić took part in the 55th Munich Security Conference from 15 to 17 February 2019.

 

This year, the Conference focused on issues such as the strength of the European Union, the trans-Atlantic cooperation as well as possible repercussions of the renewed competition between world powers.

 

Director Markić also took part in the part dedicated to the security and intelligence work as well as a series of bilateral and multilateral meetings.

 

 

Meeting between Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenković and the Secretary General of NATO Jens Stoltenberg. The two discussed continuing cooperation within NATO, celebrating its 70th anniversary this year, the Republic of Croatia’s contribution to the global security and the situation in neighboring countries (photo source: Twitter Vlada RH)


29.01.2019.

EU Counter-terrorism Coordinator visiting SOA

On 29 January 2018, as part of his visit to Zagreb, the European Union's Counter-terrorism Coordinator, Mr. Gilles de Kerchove visited the Security and Intelligence Agency where he met with the Director, Daniel Markić and his associates.

They discussed issues such as a comprehensive EU approach to preventing and combating terrorism and radicalization in Europe, terrorist threats and radicalization in southeast Europe as well as the role of EU institutions and security intelligence agencies in the fight against terrorism.

 


13.04.2018.

Commissioner for Security Union Julian King visits SOA

On 12 April 2018 as part of his visit to Croatia, the Commissioner for Security Union Julian King also visited the Security-Intelligence Agency ant talked to Director Daniel Markić and his associates.

 

European Commission’s delegation accompanying Mr. King consisted of Branko Baričević, Head of the European Commission in the Republic of Croatia and Joanna Deka, member of the Commissioner King's Cabinet.

 

Main discussion topics of the meeting were current security threats and challenges to the European Union such as terrorism, organized crime and cyber criminality.

 

Commissioner for Security Union is in charge of the implementation of the European Agenda on Security and identifying where the EU can help the cooperation between member states, and improving information and intelligence sharing, including a stronger role for EU agencies.

 


15.03.2018.

REPORT ON THE WORK OF SOA FOR 2017 ACCEPTED

Domestic Policy and National Security Committee of the Croatian Parliament accepted at its closed session held on 15 March 2018 the Report on the Work of the Security and Intelligence Agency for the year 2017.

 

Director of the Security and Intelligence Agency Daniel Markić presented the report to the members of the Committee.

 

The Annual Report contains an overview of the work of all the segments of the Security and Intelligence Agency and represents one of the ways in which the Croatian Parliament, through the Domestic Policy and National Security Committee, conducts oversight of the work of the Security and Intelligence Agency.

 

Pursuant to the Security and Intelligence System Act, the Security and Intelligence Agency also submitted the annual report on its work to the President of the Republic, Speaker of the Croatian Parliament, President of the Government of the Republic of Croatia and Head of Office of the National Security Council.


20.02.2018.

SOA Director Daniel Markić at the 54th Munich Security Conference

Director of the Security and Intelligence Agency Daniel Markić attended the 54th Munich Security Conference on 16-17 February 2018.

 

This year's conference focused in particular on the role of the EU as a global actor and its ties with Russia and the United States. Also discussed were the growing threat to liberal international order, a number of conflicts in the Middle East and the political developments in the Sahel region in Africa.

 

Director Markić participated in the work of a special round table dedicated to intelligence work "Dare to Share vs. Need to Know: Globalizing Intelligence" and held a number of bilateral and multilateral meetings.


21.11.2017.

Session of the Council for the Coordination of Security Intelligence Agencies

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defence Mr. Damir Krstičević chaired a regular session of the Council for the Coordination of Security Intelligence Agencies.


The session gathered Minister of Interior Mr. Davor Božinović, Heads of Security Intelligence Agency, Military Security Intelligence Agency and Institute for the Information Systems Security, as well as the Chiefs of Police and General Staff and Head of the Office of the National Security Council.


The session participants adopted the proposed Annual guidelines for the work of security- intelligence agencies for 2018 and discussed the data on current security situation in the Republic of Croatia, assessing it as stable and satisfactory. The Minister of Interior informed the Council members on the elements of envisaged structural and functional changes within MoI aiming towards enhancing antiterrorist capacities.


The Council also discussed a number of topics concerning the functioning of the security-intelligence and defence systems in the effort to optimize investments into capability development and use of< material, human and organizational resources of state institutions intended to protect the security of Croatian citizens.


09.11.2017.

Round table with civil society organizations

On 3 Nov 2017 a round table with civil society organizations’ representatives was held in SOA HQ.


It gathered representatives of civil society organizations dealing with human security issues, asylum seekers’ international protection, human rights and transparency.


The topics discussed included considering the role of the Security Intelligence Agency in procedures of granting international protection in the Republic of Croatia and dissemination and reliability of information appearing in public space in contemporary societies.


27.09.2017.

SOA Director’s visit to OSA BiH

On 26 Sept 2017 Director of the Security Intelligence Agency (SOA) Mr. Daniel Markić and his associates were officially received by the Director General of OSA BiH (Obavještajno-sigurnosna agencija BiH) Mr. Osman Mehmedagić in Sarajevo, following media reports on alleged covert surveillance of Croatian state officials and businesspeople by OSA BiH.


The hosts assured their guests that Croatian state officials and businesspeople are not the subject of OSA BiH’s measures of covert surveillance and that their agency is not working against political and
economic interests of the Republic of Croatia.

 

SOA noted OSA BiH’s assurances with the belief that the legality of OSA BiH’s actions, if they decide to take any, will be confirmed by the appropriate bodies of oversight in Bosnia and Herzegovina in accordance to the proscribed procedure of democratic oversight of the security intelligence sector. As part of its counterintelligence activities, SOA will continue to follow the development of this issue< and its dialogue with OSA BiH.


During their meeting, the Directors also commented on SOA’s 2017 Public Report. OSA BiH confirmed statements and information published by SOA in the Public Report pertaining to the security situation in Southeast European countries.


SOA i OSA BiH are partners in preventing and combatting threats and challenges faced both by Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina, such as terrorism, extremism and organized crime. SOA will continue to actively work on developing this partnership, bilaterally, as well as the EU and NATO Member State. These efforts will include its support in reaching Euro-Atlantic work standards.