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22 September 2005 - Media release

INTERPOL creates new tools to fight global crime, terrorism

BERLIN – INTERPOL's unique role at the centre of global law enforcement has been significantly enhanced by a series of resolutions agreed on at its 74th General Assembly.

Decisions endorsed by delegates were aimed at supporting member countries in combating terrorism and other international crime and to provide a united police response to major international incidents and natural disasters.

Access to INTERPOL's stolen travel documents (STD) database was recognised as an essential tool for border and customs agents to limit the movements of criminals and terrorists. With nearly 8 million records already entered in the database, finding technical solutions to allow border guards instant access to the information via INTERPOL's I-24/7 communications system was highlighted as a priority.

A new INTERPOL notice will also be created to support the United Nations Security Council in the fight against terrorism. Details of individuals on the UN Al Qaeda/Taliban Committee list and subject to anti-terrorism sanctions will be circulated to police around the globe via the new INTERPOL notice and added to INTERPOL's databases.

The UN peacekeeping Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) will also be given access to INTERPOL's databases and the I-24/7 communications network.

The General Assembly called on member countries to introduce legislation to assist investigations and prosecutions related to Internet websites which support terrorism. An international meeting for an exchange of intelligence will also be convened by the INTERPOL General Secretariat.

A proposal by host country Germany to establish an international missing persons/unidentified bodies database was endorsed by delegates to assist in the rapid identification of victims following a terrorist attack or natural disaster.

'The message from the world's police is that terrorism, in whatever form, will not be tolerated. The creation of a new INTERPOL notice specifically in support of UN anti-terrorism sanctions further underlines our commitment to identifying and bringing to justice those individuals who have such little regard for human life,' said INTERPOL Secretary General Ronald K. Noble, who was unanimously confirmed during the General Assembly for a second five-year term.

'These resolutions show that INTERPOL has never been so relevant or needed as it is today. This is a dynamic, responsive organization which continues to draw strength from the diversity of its membership and the dedication of its staff to serve the citizens of the world.'

With the support of the G8, INTERPOL recently launched the latest phase in the development of its international database of child sexual abuse images. A General Assembly resolution called on all member countries to create or further develop legislation to prevent online child sexual abuse and identify offenders.

National Central Bureaus were also encouraged to share information on criminal networks involved in human trafficking and for Sub-Regional Bureaus to monitor and co-ordinate such activities. The need to increase the flow of information in relation to money laundering activities was also underlined.

'There are many areas where INTERPOL and its National Central Bureaus can make a real difference to police investigations, and the work we have done during this conference will ensure that we continue to offer this valuable support,' INTERPOL President Jackie Selebi said.