G5 Sahel: UNODC trains specialized police officers against organized crime in Mauritania and in Chad
In order to better prevent and combat terrorism and transnational crime affecting the security and stability of Sahelian countries, G5 Sahel countries have created a Security Cooperation Platform, a regional mechanism for police cooperation (in French " Plateforme de Coopération en Matière de Sécurité" or PCMS). The PCMS, which has a national branch in each G5 Sahel country , aims at facilitating the exchange of security-related information and supporting the use of joint investigation teams between the five countries. Its institutionalization and operationalization have been supported by UNODC since 2017.
For several months UNODC has been organizing two-weeks long training sessions on criminal intelligence and joint investigations in each Sahelian countries. After Mali, Burkina Faso and Niger, UNODC has replicated and adapted this training session in Mauritania and Chad, respectively from 18 to 29 June and from 2 to 13 July 2018. These two courses gathered police officers from counter-terrorism units, services combating organized crime, intelligence services, and the judicial police. Over 40 participants in total, including 18 women, participated in the training workshops.
During the first week of the workshop, participants were able to strengthen their knowledge regarding the intelligence cycle, intelligence analysis and the evaluation of the information gathered. They also drafted an analytical note on recent terrorist attacks in the region.
During the second week, participants were trained on the collection of intelligence and the management of informants, both theoretically and in the field. They participated in pedestrian and motorized shadowing exercises in the streets of Nouakchott and N'Djamena. A large-scale exercise through key points of these cities also took place.
" This training course had a double impact: it strengthened my analytical and practical skills, and those of police officers I oversee as I will train them. This will significantly improve performances of my unit" highlights a Mauritanian participant. A Chadian police chief insists on the importance of such training sessions as it " completes his initial training as judicial police officer, in particular in matters of shadowing, surveillance, and questioning, and fills gaps in the fight against organized crime".
The representative of the Ministry of Public Security of the Republic of Chad, Mr Malandjigue Talansadi Didam, thanked UNODC " for this valuable support allowing professional improvement of specialized services of our country in order to better combat transnational organized crime, in all its forms".
Thanks to the support provided by UNODC, police services of G5 Sahel countries have strengthened their capacities, and are all equipped with the same techniques and procedures to fight against organized crime and terrorism. As Mr Didam Malandjigue Talansadi pointed out, the objective is to " make instability in the region a distant memory".
This assistance is part of the support programme for the operationalization of the PCMS of the UNODC Sahel Programme, implemented in coordination with the other G5 Sahel partners, in particular the European Union, the German cooperation (GIZ) and Interpol. These training courses contribute to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 16, and were organized thanks to the financial support of Denmark. UNODC plans to implement a new round of training sessions on the fight against organized crime in the coming months in the five G5 Sahel States.