Europol signed a strategic agreement with the Israel Police on Tuesday, marking the first-ever working agreement signed between the European Union criminal intelligence agency and a non-EU country.The agreement was signed in The Hague by Israel Police Commissioner Roni Alsheich and Catherine De Bolle, Executive Director of Europol.The signing of the “Police to Police” agreement followed intensive discussions and a vote at the Europol headquarters which was unanimously approved by 28 representatives of member countries. Europol said in a press release that the agreement will be important for tackling priority crime areas affecting both the European Union and Israel, such as fraud, cybercrime and terrorism.Investigations in the EU have occasionally established links to Israel in the field of financial crime, the press released noted, adding that “as Europol supports EU Member States in identifying cross-border links, the Israeli contribution in such cases continues to be of utmost importance.”In his speech at the signing ceremony, Alsheich said: “A global threat profile requires a global response profile. Cooperation and the transfer of knowledge are the basis for coping, and our ability to guard and preserve [both] human life and the values of a free world.Without a strong national police force on the Internet and a dramatic expansion of the national police’s foreign relations abroad, there is no chance of dealing in an effective way with this threat.”“Terrorists and criminals use commercial technology that has been developed for civilian purposes and the welfare of citizens in the free world; we are required to stay one step ahead of them. It requires us doing this together,” he added. “Adopting and implementing these principles are a basis for joint analysis of the threats...Exchanging operational, research information and intelligence; developing training methods; and building technological capabilities will ensure public safety and security of both European citizens and the citizens of Israel.”De Bolle said: “Today, I am signing the first-ever Europol working arrangement between Europol and a non-EU country. These provisions were introduced last year in the Europol legislation. It is a major step forward in enhancing the relationship between Europol and Israel. The arrangement will multiply contacts at all levels and open doors to closer cooperation, making the European Union and Israel safer.”The agreement allows the Israel Police’s representative in Europol, superintendent Dror Gutworth, to be a regular member of the professional discussions relating to Israel Police criminal activities, according to a police press release.