Interpol warn of security threats by organized gangs in East Africa

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Addis Ababa, 27 August 2014  (WIC) - The International police organization (Interpol) on Monday (August 25) warned of new security threats by organized criminal gangs including terrorist militants which have caused instability in the Eastern Africa Region.

The Head of Interpol regional Bureau for Eastern Africa, Rwego Francis, said the organized gangs have become more sophisticated with advanced technology hence need for concerted efforts among countries.

He told the East African Police Chiefs at their Association’s Annual Conference in Mombasa that "All crimes have become transnational, so fighting crime without a regional approach will not assist us.

We need to strengthen cooperation in carrying out simultaneous operation."  He also noted that Al-Shabaab continued to pose a threat to the region and said cyber crime was widely assisting in funding the group’s activities in the region.

He said there was a real need for improved counter terrorism efforts and for the establishment of Financial Intelligence Units (FIU) in every country to in tracking their funding.

He also urged a regional approach for the timely sharing of information, joint investigation and capacity building. The week-long meeting, which will also consider ways to combat drug dealing and poaching, is being attended by the police chiefs of the East African Police Chiefs’ Association which includes Burundi, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Rwanda, Somalia, Sudan, Uganda, Comoros, Eritrea, Seychelles, South Sudan and Tanzania.

Kenya’s Inspector General of Police David Kimaiyo said the five-day meeting is also being attended by security experts from Germany, Turkey, France, Algeria and Nigeria as well as the head of the Interpol secretariat and will devise ways of combating serious crimes that involve networks across countries.

It is expected to come up with appropriate recommendations which will serve to make policing in the region more effective.(MoFA)