Countries around the world are facing the growing challenges posed by prison radicalization and the threat individuals with terrorist ideologies may pose to public safety upon their release.
Addressing these challenges, INTERPOL brought together law enforcement officers from counterterrorism, intelligence and prison services for a meeting of its Nexus Initiative Working Group.
Co-hosted by INTERPOL, the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office and Counter Terrorism Command (SO15), the two-day (3 – 4 February) meeting in London gathered more than 50 officers from law enforcement agencies in 13 countries to promote cooperation between police and correctional services on a global level.
During the opening ceremony, Kevin Southworth, Detective Chief Superintendent of the Counter Terrorism Command (SO15) emphasized the importance of such initiatives which bring colleagues together from multiple countries and agencies in a forum where they can share experiences and identify common challenges.
Participants exchanged information on their experiences and methods adopted in their respective countries to address the management of convicted terrorists both during sentences and after release. Discussions also focused on what role INTERPOL can play in supporting law enforcement in the management of offenders, and the wider tools and policing capabilities available to support this.
“The issue of terrorist radicalization in prisons and the threat they might pose after their release is a real concern for our member countries, so INTERPOL will continue to offer a platform for them to discuss measures to tackle this threat and provide our full support to implement them,” said INTERPOL Assistant Director of Terrorist Networks, Karel Pelán.
Funded by the INTERPOL Foundation for a Safer World and the United Kingdom, the meeting was part of the INTERPOL Counter-Terrorism Global Initiative which is focused on assisting member countries to contain and disrupt transnational terrorist activities.