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Interpol to set up Kenya office

28 June 2014, 10:37

Nairobi - International police organization Interpol on Friday said that it is planning to expand its presence in Eastern Africa so as help national governments combat poaching and other forms of environmental crime.

Assistant Director of Environmental Security David Higgins said that Interpol will deploy more personnel at its regional bureau in Kenya by the end of October.

"We want to stimulate the follow of intelligence, so that we can defeat the criminal networks, who are now using modern technology to escape detection," Higgins said during a media round table at the UN Environmental Assembly.

He said that China, Brazil, Netherlands, France are among the countries that will provide personnel to boost responses to environmental crime.

Higgins noted that eliminating poaching is not only about more foot soldiers on game reserves and national parks but increasingly about the efficient use of available resources.

He added that Interpol is aware that environmental crimes pose a serious transnational law enforcement challenge.

"Unfortunately, national and regional responses to environmental crime are not usually accorded sufficient budgetary resources despite their growing threat," he said.

"As such the international donor community should consider establishing an environmental law enforcement fund," Higgins said.

He added that the international nature of wildlife crime which involves source, transit and destination countries calls for a global response to combating the vice.

The global police body is well placed to support international enforcement efforts due to its global reach.

Convention on International Trade on Endangered Species (CITES) Secretary General John Scanlon said that only an inter-agency national law enforcement collaboration will eliminate wildlife crimes.

He urged eastern Africa to develop an environmental security task force so allow for greater cooperation. CITES noted that the eastern African region needs long sustainable investments and commitments.

"This will enable countries in the region to more effectively exchange law enforcement information and intelligence. The aim is to conduct a real-time joint investigations and operations which drive positive impacts against criminal networks," he said.

- Xinhua

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