VIENNA, Austria – The INTERPOL General Assembly has voted to admit the Republic of Palau as a new member country, bringing the Organization’s total membership to 196.
Palau’s application was approved by a more than two-thirds majority vote at INTERPOL’s 91st General Assembly, currently meeting in Vienna, Austria, where the world police body was created 100 years ago.
Addressing the General Assembly, Gustav Aitaro, State Minister of Palau, said:
“We seek to protect our peace and security, to preserve our Palauan values, culture, and the way of life that we have inherited from our forebears.
“The support of INTERPOL will be crucial to the future of our police force and community.”
With membership taking immediate effect, the country will have participation and voting rights for the remainder of the session.
Greeting Palau’s accession to INTERPOL, Secretary General Jürgen Stock said:
“We warmly welcome Palau to the international law enforcement community. It will play an important role in helping close the global net around transnational organized crime. Likewise, we look forward to supporting Palau in its efforts to protect its citizens and environment.”
A new INTERPOL National Central Bureau
Palau will now establish its National Central Bureau (NCB). NCBs are fully staffed and operated by national law enforcement bodies and operate in accordance with national legislation. They are that country’s single point of contact with the INTERPOL General Secretariat headquarters in Lyon, France, as well as for the NCBs of other countries.
Membership of INTERPOL means national law enforcement can instantly both share and receive vital policing information from around the world across a range of crime areas including human trafficking, drug smuggling, cybercrime, vehicle crime and terrorism.
Palau will also benefit from policing capabilities provided by the General Secretariat, such as training, analysis, specialist teams and support from the Command and Coordination Centre.
Through I-24/7, INTERPOL’s secure global police communications network, countries can send messages and also access multiple global databases, including on wanted persons, stolen motor vehicles, stolen and lost travel documents, fingerprints, DNA and face recognition.
While the widest possible cooperation is encouraged, INTERPOL respects the sovereignty of each member country. Member countries retain full ownership of the data they share with INTERPOL and they decide with which other countries their data is shared.