President Paul Kagame has lauded the work of international police organisation, Interpol, in making the world a safer place by promoting and enhancing cooperation among the world’s police forces to fight crimes.
While officially opening the 84th General Assembly of Interpol in Kigali, yesterday, Kagame described security as essential.
“Security is the foundation for everything. When it breaks down, the costs are huge: loss of life, destruction of trust within society and in public institutions, and economic stagnation. We experienced the worst of this in Rwanda where the country’s security forces at the time were at the forefront of the genocidal machinery.”
“Allow me to express our sincere gratitude to Interpol for your efforts in tracking down fugitives wanted for Genocide in Rwanda, and helping to deliver justice for victims and survivors – even though there remains much work to be done. Many more of these fugitives are still at large and we will have to continue working with Interpol, and the international community, to ensure justice is done,” Kagame said, adding that “the world could learn a lot from how Interpol has conducted its affairs: quietly, effectively and collaboratively.”
‘RNP embodies good governance’
Speaking on Rwanda’s work to build institutions that serve the interest of citizens, President Kagame pointed to Rwanda National Police as key to good governance.
“In the last 21 years, Rwanda has worked to build effective, citizen-focused governance institutions. One of them, notably, is the Rwanda National Police, which this year marks its 15th anniversary. Today, this young police force, working closely with communities, provides one of the most secure environments in the world, where Rwandans can pursue socio-economic transformation,” the President said.
The cooperation of the Rwanda National Police (RNP) with Interpol has led to many successful results, including the arrest of a number of fugitives of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi, the handling of more than 36 cases of human trafficking since 2009 involving 153 victims, and the interception of several stolen vehicles.
Rwanda National Police has also been working with Interpol to detect and intercept drug traffickers, forged documents and counterfeit money, illicit goods, and fake pharmaceuticals, among others.
Interpol’s role is to enable police around the world to work together to make the world a safer place.
Speaking at the summit’s opening, Interpol President Mireille Ballestrazzi paid tribute to the victims of the Genocide against the Tutsi and commended Rwanda’s progress to date.
“I wish to salute the women and men of this country for the extraordinary resilience they have shown in the wake of the genocide 21 years ago that left the country in mourning,” Ballestrazzi said.
“While paying tribute to the memory of the victims of this barbarity, I also wish to highlight the long way Rwanda has come since, and the concrete results it has achieved in progress and development.”
Ballestrazzi also emphasised at the organisation’s summit yesterday that the cooperation among the world’s police forces to counter crimes remains crucial in a globalised world.
“In our globalised environment – a threat for one of us constitutes a threat for all of us. International cooperation is essential for each and every State to guarantee its security. Cooperation is the only way forward,” Ballestrazzi added, quoting President Kagame’s speech at the 70th United Nations General Assembly.
Running under the theme, “Interpol 2020: Policing Global Threats in a Dynamic Environment,” the four-day meeting opened yesterday with the presence of 850 delegates from 149 countries out of the 190 countries that make up the organisation.
They will discuss a range of current policing and security issues, including cross-border challenges faced by police such as terrorism, the organised criminal groups behind drug and human trafficking, and the different facets of cyber crime.