Montenegro police chief’s visit to INTERPOL highlights country’s leadership in regional police cooperation
LYON, France ‒ Enhancing collaboration with INTERPOL against transnational organized crime in Montenegro and across Europe was the focus of a meeting today between Montenegro’s Director of Police, Božidar Vuksanović, and INTERPOL Secretary General Ronald K. Noble at the world police body’s General Secretariat headquarters.
With Montenegro currently holding the presidency of the Southeast Europe Police Chiefs Association (SEPCA), and with Mr Noble attending SEPCA’s General Assembly in Budva next week, key topics in talks included borderless crimes, drug trafficking and standardizing the use of vital INTERPOL tools such as its I-24/7 secure global police communications system across the SEPCA region.
In this respect, innovative ways to enhance security for citizens and visitors while respecting the rule of law also topped the agenda during Mr Vuksanović’s visit to INTERPOL, with Secretary General Noble highlighting as good practice Montenegro’s use of INTERPOL’s technology enabling officers at key border points to run instant checks against INTERPOL’s global database of Stolen and Lost Travel Documents containing more than 32 million documents from some 160 countries.
“Montenegro has long supported using an international approach in the fight against crime, and of working with key international partners such as INTERPOL in the pursuit of common security goals. My meeting with Secretary General Noble therefore provided an important opportunity to reaffirm the need for international cooperation and to identify areas where we can collaborate even more closely for the benefit of citizens and police in Montenegro and the region,” said Mr Vuksanović.
With Montenegro an active member of INTERPOL’s Project BESA targeting organized crime groups in South East Europe, as well as a leading contributor amongst INTERPOL’s 190 member countries to its Stolen and Missing Vehicles database, Secretary General Noble congratulated Montenegro’s police chief on his country’s ‘strong commitment to international police co-operation’.
“Montenegro understands that international police cooperation with INTERPOL is vital not just for the security of its citizens but also for Southeast Europe and all of Europe, at a time when globalization has seen the expansion and diversification of transnational crime,” said Mr Noble.
Launched in 2009, INTERPOL’s project BESA provides support to member countries in South East Europe in several key areas including, the establishment of a network of officers in each participating country, access to INTERPOL’s global tools and services, including its secure police communications network, and the provision of analytical, operational and investigative support.
To date Project BESA has led to the arrest of more than 200 suspects, the seizure of illegal drugs, including heroin and methamphetamine, and the recovery of weapons ranging from automatic rifles to rocket launchers and explosives.
Mr Vuksanović was accompanied during his visit by the Head of INTERPOL’s National Central Bureau in Podgorica, Dejan Djurovic.
SEPCA member countries include: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Romania and Serbia.