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INTERPOL CBRNE Programme Nuclear Security Action Plan

The White House today released a statement regarding INTERPOL’s critical role in supporting international law enforcement cooperation and capacity development to counter threats involving nuclear and other radioactive material.

INTERPOL supports the Nuclear Security Summit (NSS) objectives to prevent nuclear terrorism in accordance with its General Assembly resolution of 2011 “On raising awareness of INTERPOL’S CBRNE Programme”.

The Radiological and Nuclear Terrorism Prevention Unit (RNTPU) of the INTERPOL’s CBRNE Sub-Directorate is the focal point of the counter-terrorism activities of INTERPOL in the area of nuclear and radiological threats. INTERPOL provides a forum for collecting operational data, providing investigative support, driving actions and building confidence between national law enforcement communities and coordinating law enforcement aspects of addressing criminal and terrorist offences involving nuclear or other radioactive material.

The White House outlined the following Action Plan to appropriately support implementation of the nuclear security-related mandates of this organization.  This Action Plan also describes measures member countries advocate that the INTERPOL pursue, through its decision-making bodies, in order to appropriately promote and advance nuclear security.

Operational Data Services and Information Sharing

  • Facilitate transnational information exchange between law enforcement agencies and, when relevant, nuclear security institutions on criminal and terrorist offences and threats involving nuclear or other radioactive materials, associated facilities and activities; and strengthen information sharing mechanisms consistent with the INTERPOL Member Countries’ national laws and procedures.
  • Share information on terrorist and other criminal offences and threats involving nuclear and other radioactive material, their perpetrators, associated facilities and activities.
  • Promote further INTERPOL cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency to ensure effective international coordination between law enforcement and technical communities responsible for nuclear security and countering nuclear and radiological trafficking. INTERPOL could actively encourage Member Countries to supply complementary law enforcement information about Incident and Trafficking Data Base cases through INTERPOL’s National Central Bureaus and its secured global communication network I-24/7, consistent with the established procedures approved by the governing bodies of the two organizations.
  • Advocate for INTERPOL to assist Member Countries by providing access to the INTERPOL databases for broader national law enforcement services, including border guard structures.
  • Advocate for INTERPOL to cooperate with the UN, the International Atomic Energy Agency, the Global Initiative to Combat Nuclear Terrorism, the Global Partnership and, when suitable, other relevant organizations and initiatives in coordinating information sharing, lessons learned, good practices, guidance and resources, recognizing the central coordination role of the IAEA, including active participation of relevant INTERPOL officials in IAEA-hosted Information Exchange Meetings in order that the activities of INTERPOL support and complement the work of other international organizations and initiatives.

Support to Investigations and Operations

  • Enhance INTERPOL’s capacity to support multinational investigations of terrorist and other criminal offences involving nuclear or other radioactive material including Operation Fail Safe and facilitating effective prevention, detection, response to, and investigation of, nuclear and radiological offences and the prosecution of offenders.
  • Advocate for INTERPOL to provide assistance to Member Countries to enhance the capability for monitoring and tracking of persons with a known history of involvement in illicit trafficking of nuclear or other radioactive material.
  • Advocate for INTERPOL to provide support to ongoing multinational investigation of terrorist and other criminal offences involving nuclear or other radioactive material. This could be achieved through facilitating the exchange of law-enforcement-sensitive information relevant to ongoing investigations.
  • Advocate for INTERPOL to strengthen its efforts in countering radiological and nuclear threats through the enhancement of coordination among the RNTPU and the other INTERPOL counter-terrorism and border management specialized units.
  • Advocate for INTERPOL to identify good practices relating to existing national law enforcement capacities and technical resources to respond to the terrorist and other criminal offences involving nuclear and other radioactive material and authorize INTERPOL to make this information available to all Member Countries through a dedicated database.
  • Advocate for INTERPOL to identify national law enforcement points of contact within the INTERPOL’s National Central Bureaus who may be contacted in the case of terrorist and other criminal offences involving nuclear and other radioactive material.

Capacity Building

  • Support INTERPOL’s building of multidisciplinary and cross agency capacity through training and exercises to prevent and respond to the terrorist and other criminal offences involving nuclear or other radioactive material, including by developing and providing training resources and good practice guidance to the law enforcement community.
  • Advocate for INTERPOL to develop and provide capacity building activities to national law enforcement agencies with regard to the illegal acquisition, possession, trafficking or other illicit use of nuclear or other radioactive material.
  • Advocate for INTERPOL to work with the IAEA and when suitable, other relevant institutions, on assisting States to develop comprehensive national plans for responding to terrorist and other criminal offences involving nuclear or other radioactive material, and to organize field simulations and exercises.
  • Advocate for INTERPOL to hold workshops and conferences to raise awareness of the threat of illicit trafficking of nuclear and other radioactive material and promote stronger interagency and international cooperation to respond to terrorist and other criminal offences involving nuclear and other radioactive material.
  • Advocate for INTERPOL to develop and execute joint operations with relevant national government agencies to detect and deter illicit trafficking of nuclear or other radioactive material.
  • Advocate for INTERPOL to work with Member Countries to regularly assess the existing INTERPOL guidelines in the field of preventing and combating terrorist and other criminal offences involving nuclear or other radioactive material, identify possible gaps and promote good practices through non-binding recommendations.
  • Advocate for INTERPOL to document and share case studies that demonstrate good practices for successful investigations, seizures, arrests, and prosecutions of radiological and nuclear material trafficking cases, taking into account the different national standards for investigations and prosecutions across the spectrum of INTERPOL Member Countries.
  • Advocate for INTERPOL to develop and leverage existing e-learning modules to enable widely accessible law enforcement training for nuclear security.
  • Advocate for INTERPOL to publish from a law enforcement perspective a comprehensive study of scams and hoaxes involving illicit trafficking of purported nuclear or radioactive material to help inform Member Countries and provide lessons learned, including to provide a more measured response to such events in the interest of preserving limited response assets and capabilities.

Support for Nuclear Security Within INTERPOL

  • For those in a position to do so, generate and provide additional funding and other resources from Member Countries, including support for additional staff, to support INTERPOL RNTPU programs and activities.
  • Advocate for INTERPOL to consider strengthening the activities of the CBRNE Sub-Directorate with a view to increasing its capacity to provide law enforcement guidance, training, and capacity building for prevention, detection and responding to criminal and terrorist related offences involving nuclear or other radioactive material.

Source: White House release, adapted.

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