MARRAKECH, Morocco – With the Middle East and North Africa one of the fastest growing regions for information exchange via INTERPOL, police chiefs are meeting to identify ways for even stronger cooperation.
Whilst terrorism remains a key issue, addressing the threats posed by cybercrime and organized crime, such as drug trafficking, will also be high on the agenda of the fourth Meeting for Chiefs of Police from the Middle East and North Africa.
Operations coordinated by INTERPOL across the region have underlined the links between various types of transnational crime.
Trigger IV, which targeted illicit arms, resulted not only in the seizure of weapons which potentially linked crime scenes in the Middle East, Europe and Latin America but also 98 arrests in relation to migrant smuggling, trafficking in illicit goods and other crimes.
Between July and September this year, Operation Neptune II, which focused on maritime border security on routes between North Africa and Southern Europe, saw the detection of 12 terrorism suspects.
INTERPOL Secretary General Jürgen Stock said the range of current and future security challenges requires continued regional and global cooperation.
“INTERPOL activities in the Middle East and North Africa continue unabated, strengthening our collective understanding of the threat landscape.
“At the same time, we are seeing results around the world because of national law enforcement’s increased collection and sharing of information across the region via INTERPOL. Each piece of policing data adds to INTERPOL’s effectiveness as a global early warning system.”
The two-day (25 and 26 November) meeting brings together some 60 senior law enforcement officials from 17 countries, the Arab Interior Ministers Council, the Gulf Cooperation Council Police Organization (GCCPOL), and the Naif Arab University for Security Sciences.
Countries represented at the meeting were Algeria, Bahrain, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Libya, Mauritania, Morocco, Oman, Palestine, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates and Yemen.