More than 1,000 official delegates from 195 countries, including 40 ministers and 85 police chiefs from around the world, are attending the 87th General Assembly of the International Criminal Police Organisation (Interpol), which began in Dubai on Sunday.
His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, and Lt-General Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior, inaugurated the Interpol general assembly at Madinat Jumeirah in Dubai.
The opening session was also attended by Sheikh Mansour bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum; Lt-General Dhahi Khalfan Tamim, Deputy Chairman of Police and Public Security in Dubai; Lt-General Saif Abdullah Al Shafar, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Interior; and Major-General Abdullah Khalifa Al Marri, Commander-in-Chief of the Dubai Police and Chairman of the Supreme Organising Committee.
Also present were Kim Young-yang, senior vice-president of Interpol; Jürgen Stock, secretary-general of Interpol; Elias Al Murr, chairman of the organisation; internal ministers; security and police leaders; and international experts from the member countries, including the UAE.
In a tweet on Sunday, Sheikh Mohammed said that “the Interpol is required more than ever to coordinate efforts against transnational and organised crimes to make the future of the world safer and secure”, describing the Interpol “as the oldest police organisation in the world”.
In a speech at the opening session, Sheikh Saif said that the Dubai Government under the leadership of Sheikh Mohammed is a pioneer in spreading social participation and it will continue its cooperation with its global partners in the war against terrorism.
He pointed out the vital and active role played by the Interpol since the organisation was founded more than 100 years ago.
Challenges to be discussed
The two-day meeting, which will see the election of a new Interpol head, will discuss the complexities of terrorism and will address the challenges countries face in this endeavour.
Stock, secretary-general of the Interpol, said in his speech: “As one of the world’s most technologically advanced cities, Dubai is the ideal host for this year’s general assembly, which will be one of the largest in our history, with some 1,300 participants in total.”
The global crime scenario has become more complicated and police authorities across the world are exchanging information about criminals on the run in order to make the world a safer place, Stock said.
He added that the Interpol has strengthened its legal framework during the last two years to issue red alerts and make arrests possible on a daily basis, nabbing rapists, murderers, drugs traffickers, and those who exploit children.
“No one country or region alone can address these issues, which is why meetings such as this are essential in streamlining our efforts and more importantly our actions,” said Stock.
Welcoming the delegates, Major-General Al Marri said: “This year’s attendance is unprecedented. … The meeting will help identify the most important challenges, explore the future role of technology in the fight against terrorism and organised crime, and discuss enhancing cooperation to make the world a safer place.”
The general assembly will be electing a new president along with other members of the executive committee on the final day.
The countries that are competing to succeed former president Ming Hongwei, who announced his resignation after his recent arrest in China, include Russia, South Korea, and South Africa.
The Interpol is also considering the accession of Kosovo, Vanuatu and Kiribati to the organisation, which will make it the largest international police organisation.