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11 October 2012

Enhancing regional cooperation on terrorism focus of INTERPOL meeting

ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates – Terrorism experts from some 30 countries and organizations gathered for a meeting of the INTERPOL Fusion Task Force to discuss ways to enhance intelligence exchange and operational collaboration, particularly in the Middle East and North Africa region.

The aim of the two-day (9-10 October) Operational Working Group meeting for Project Al Qabdah, which focuses on the Middle East and North Africa, was to promote the exchange of intelligence, support operations and enhance international and regional cooperation on terrorism-related matters. More than 100 terrorism investigators and intelligence officers attended the meeting.

Topics of discussion included terrorist groups, networks and their activities in the Middle East and North Africa; the movement of terrorists; terrorism financing; and particular terrorist organizations known to operate in the region. 

INTERPOL Executive Director of Police Services Jean-Michel Louboutin said countries must collaborate and share critical information in order to effectively prevent and respond to terrorist threats.

“Looking back at what we have achieved collectively through the Fusion Task Force, we can say that member countries have provided an overwhelmingly positive response to the initiative, in particular countries from this region,” said Mr Louboutin. “This meeting presents us with an opportunity to take stock of our achievements and see how we can further improve our efforts.”

Created in 2002 in the wake of the alarming rise in the scale and sophistication of international terrorist attacks, the INTERPOL Fusion Task Force offers a multi-disciplinary approach to assisting member countries in investigations related to terrorism.