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Coordination meeting between UNICRI and INTERPOL

Enhancing capacities of Member States to prevent and counter nuclear and radiological threats

Lyon, France -


The Coordinator of the Radiological and Nuclear Terrorism Prevention Unit (RNTPU) of the International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL), Mr. John Buchanan, met with the Head of the CBRN Risk Mitigation and Security Governance Unit of the United Nations Interregional Crime and Justice Research Institute (UNICRI), Mr. Francesco Marelli, at INTERPOL’s Headquaters in Lyon to discuss the special relationship and effective cooperation between the two organizations in the area of preventing and countering radiological and nuclear (RN) threats.

INTERPOL and UNICRI agreed to continue supporting the United Nations (UN) and INTERPOL member countries in a coordinated effort by recognizing the unique strengths of each organization and their complementary areas of expertise.

During the meeting, representatives of the two organizations discussed further aligning their training programmes to enhance UN and INTERPOL member states' capacities. In particular, INTERPOL provides a national-level programme to build capacity in high-priority member countries to execute law enforcement duties related to radiological and nuclear threats. At the same time, UNICRI delivers a unique capacity-building program on how to conduct intelligence-led operations to prevent radiological and nuclear trafficking through an interagency approach and multi-format support (including train-the-trainers, national trainings and table-top-exercise). These different training curricula address unique needs of and requests from the UN and INTERPOL member states.

INTERPOL and UNICRI also promote and support intelligence sharing at the regional level. For example, through regional Geiger Working Groups, INTERPOL creates opportunities for sharing police data and information on acts and non-state actors related to radioactive material crimes.INTERPOL utilizes this information to deliver targeted analysis and investigative support to all member countries. Similarly, UNICRI through CONTACT program brings together experts from agencies responsible for preventing and prosecuting RN smuggling activities, particularly in relation to the collection and interception of intelligence information and the organization of special operations to prevent and stop criminal activity.

INTERPOL and UNICRI also discussed and agreed to work together to produce a handbook and associated course that provides police, civil prosecutors, and relevant investigative agencies with guidance to support the successful investigation and prosecution of incidents involving the deliberate misuse of RN materials.