World’s police chiefs gather in Dubai to discuss the future of crime fighting

The gathering is considered one of the most prominent police events in the world. (File/Shutterstock)
Updated 18 November 2018
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World’s police chiefs gather in Dubai to discuss the future of crime fighting

  • The event is being attended by 171 countries and 1,000 delegates
  • Global crime had become more complex and more international than ever in today’s digital age

DUBAI: Around 40 ministers and 85 police chiefs from around the world gathered in Dubai on Sunday to discuss innovation in policing as well as today’s major crime threats.

Interpol’s 87th General Assembly will enable 192 of its member-countries, including Saudi Arabia and the UAE, to work together to fight international crime.

“In the age of unprecedented information exchange, police around the world are increasingly facing new challenges,” said Kim Jong Yang, Interpol’s senior vice president, during the event’s opening ceremony.

“Gathering best practices within an international model, Interpol provides a neutral, well-connected platform. Global connectivity is something Interpol strives for among law-enforcement worldwide.”

With 171 countries attending and 1,000 delegates, the gathering is considered one of the most prominent police events in the world.

“Participants will discuss complex terrorism and crime threats affecting all of us and to address future challenges,” said Jurgen Stock, Secretary General of Interpol, during a press conference.

“It is quite clear all these phenomena cannot be fought in isolation. No country or region can fight these in isolation, so this strengthens our global fight against terrorism and crime.”

He said global crime had become more complex and more international than ever in today’s digital age. “We are talking about terrorist threats all over the world where we see terrorist groups being connected,” he said.

“The cyber environment has been adding an element [of] threat to our modern societies, in terms of how it helps terrorists conduct their criminal and terrorist activities. The main purpose is to ensure there are no safe havens for criminals.”
Since 1956, the Kingdom has been working with Interpol to combat transnational crime across the Middle East and beyond, with the country contributing towards some 40,000 foreign terrorist profiles in Interpol’s database.
The Interpol National Central Bureau (NCB) for Saudi Arabia, which is part of the Ministry of Interior, serves as a fundamental gateway for international investigations involving the Kingdom and its citizens.

Interpol Riyadh works regularly with all of the organization’s member-countries to locate fugitives to bring them to justice, among other tasks. “International police cooperation is important,” Stock said.

“Interpol’s database contains 93 million records and they are being checked up to 200 times a second.

This is just a snapshot of the activity of our member countries, which doesn’t include regional and global activities targeting all forms of crime by Interpol – every gap that remains provides opportunities for criminals to hide their activities so it’s important we strengthen this system.” 


Cambodia seizes record 3-ton haul of African ivory

This photo taken on December 13, 2018 shows Cambodian Customs and Excise Officials looking at ivory seized from a shipping container at the Phnom Penh port. (AFP)
Updated 17 December 2018
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Cambodia seizes record 3-ton haul of African ivory

  • Demand from China and Vietnam has fueled the growth of illegal wildlife trafficking via Cambodia

PHNOM PENH: Cambodia seized more than 3.2 tons of elephant tusks hidden in a storage container sent from Mozambique, a customs official said Sunday, marking the country’s largest ivory bust.
The discovery Thursday of 1,026 tusks at the Phnom Penh Autonomous Port followed a tip from the US embassy, the official said, and highlights Cambodia’s emergence as a key regional transit point for the multibillion dollar trade in illicit wildlife.
“The elephant tusks were hidden among marble in a container that was abandoned,” Sun Chhay, director of the Customs and Excise Office at the port, told AFP.
He said the ivory was sent from the southern African nation of Mozambique and arrived at the port last year.
The unidentified owner of the shipment did not arrive to pick up the cargo.
Pictures of the massive haul showed long rows of confiscated tusks spread out on the ground at the port.
Sun Chhay said he did not know whether the shipment was destined for markets in other countries.
Demand from China and Vietnam has fueled the growth of illegal wildlife trafficking via Cambodia.
Weak law enforcement and corruption attract wildlife smugglers, especially at a time when neighboring Thailand is cracking down on the banned trade.
Ivory is prized for its beauty while the market in traditional medicine has led to the smuggling of rhino horn and pangolin scales.
Cambodia has a minuscule elephant population but its emergence as a new trafficking hub has resulted in several headline-grabbing busts over the past five years.
The largest before this week occured in 2014, when Cambodian customs seized about three tons of ivory hidden in a container of beans at the southwestern port of Sihanoukville.
Last year, Cambodia also seized nearly a ton of ivory hidden in hollowed-out logs discovered inside an abandoned container, owned by a company based in Mozambique.