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26 June 2002 - Media release

INTERPOL launches new database on stolen travel documents

Key information resource in combating terrorism and transnational crime


With the launch of a new INTERPOL database on stolen blank travel documents police officers around the world have a vital new instrument in their fight against terrorism and transnational crime. Any type of stolen passport for example, issued in any of INTERPOL's 179 member countries, may be recorded directly in the database by the issuing country. The new database will be accessible at any time for member countries, 24 hours around the clock and seven days a week.

'The theft of blank documents might appear a relatively minor crime, but it can be a key characteristic in facilitating terrorist missions. By making it easier to report and assemble theft details, INTERPOL is assisting police with another tool to help protect the citizens of the world,' said Secretary General Noble.

He directed the establishment of this database following an analysis of terrorist movements and a study by an international working group with test period involving three member countries working in three different languages: Bosnia Herzegovina (English), Monaco (French) and Spain (Spanish).

The launch of the database of stolen blank travel documents complements the range of other INTERPOL databases on, for example, DNA, fingerprints, stolen motor vehicles, stolen works of art and drug seizures as well as a nominal database.