News

 

Please see below a non-exhaustive selection of news items to reflect the richness of contacts and joint activities happening between the EU and UNODC.

 

15 - 16 December 2016 - Exchanges on Maritime Crime in West and Central Africa

Photo credit UNODC BrusselsThe UNODC Global Maritime Crime Programme Team (Ms Julie Hoy-Carrasco from Kenya, Ms Siri Bjune from Vienna and Mr Giuseppe Sernia from Senegal) came to Brussels for two days to meet with key EU stakeholders (DG MARE, DG DEVCO, DG GROW, EEAS) to discuss programme development including continued legal reform and maritime law enforcement capacity work in West and Central Africa. Separate meetings were held with EU counterparts on how to best move forward in joint support to maritime law enforcement capacity in Somalia. 

   

 

14 December 2016 - EU & International Anti-Corruption Agreements: Time to step up the ambition

Ms Candice Welsch, Chief of the Implementation Support Section of the Corruption and Economic Crime Branch, delivered a presentation at an event hosted by MEP Dennis De Jong and organized by the European Parliament Intergroup on Integrity, Transparency, Corruption and Organised Crime entitled " EU & International Anti-Corruption Agreements: Time to step up the ambition". The Council of Europe's GRECO and the European Commission also made presentations. The Intergroup made an appeal for the European Commission to increase its anti-corruption reporting and to participate in the review mechanism to UNCAC.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

12 December 2016 - Exchanges on EU-UNODC Plan of Action on Wildlife and Forest Crime for Central Africa

Photo credit UNODC Brussels Mr Jorge Rios, Chief of the Global Programme for Combating Wildlife and Forest Crime at UNODC Vienna, and his colleague Ms Rhiannon Hudsonjones, came to Brussels to discuss and progress, with counterparts from DG DEVCO and from the Delegation of the EU to Gabon, the proposed EU funded UNODC Plan of Action for Central Africa; to build capacity for law enforcement agencies, prosecutors, and the judiciary to combat wildlife and forest crime in the region. 

 

9 December 2016 - International Anti-Corruption Day 

Photo credit UNODC BrusselsIn celebration of International Anti-Corruption Day on 9 December, UNODC participated in the seminar "Anti-Corruption for Belgian Companies Overseas" organized by  FPS Economy. The event was opened by the Ministers of Economy (Mr Kris Peeters) and Justice (Mr Koen Geens) and supported by the Belgian Federation of Enterprises and the International Chamber of Commerce.  Ms Candice Welsch, Chief of the Implementation Support Section of the Corruption and Economic Crime Branch, highlighted the importance of the  UN Convention against Corruption which represents the universal standard and contains provisions on the role of the private sector in preventing and combatting corruption. The implementation of the Convention will also support the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals, particularly its  goal 16. The contribution of the private sector is critical to the success of efforts to fight corruption. 

 

 

 

8 December - Exchanges on Counter Terrorism and Violent Extremism in third countries

Ms Solongo Dolgor, from the Terrorism Prevention Branch at UNODC Vienna, participated in the workshop "Operationalising and Sustaining the Global Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) Agenda", organised by the Prevention Project in cooperation with CT-MORSE (Counter-Terrorism Monitoring, Reporting and Support Mechanism) - a project of the EU providing policy monitoring and support for the Instrument Contributing to Stability and Peace (IcSP) actions in countering terrorism and violent extremism in third countries. The Prevention project seeks to address the spread of violent extremism by looking at how to operationalize a "whole of society" approach to preventing the spread of violent extremism. At the workshop, Mr Eric Rosand, the Director of the project, presented the findings of the report " Communities First: A Blueprint for Organizing and Sustaining a Global Movement Against Violent Extremism".  The report contains a series of recommendations drawing on the experience and expertise of a wide-range of experts and lessons-learned since September 2001. 

 

22-23 November 2016 - ACP-EU Dialogue on Migration and Development -  Seminar on Trafficking in Human Beings and Smuggling of Migrants 

Ms Aimée Comrie, Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice Officer in the Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling Section at UNODC Vienna, delivered a presentation at the ACP Dialogue on Migration and Development on enacting and strengthening a comprehensive legal and policy framework on TIP and SOM. The presentation highlighted the technical assistance undertaken by UNODC in the area of strengthening legal frameworks to address both crimes, in particular in the context of the Global Action to Address Trafficking in Persons and Migrant Smuggling ( GLO.ACT). GLO.ACT is a four year (2015-2019) joint initiative by the European Union (EU) and UNODC being implemented in partnership with IOM and UNICEF and delivers in 13 strategically selected countries across Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe and Latin America. 

 

16 - 17 November 2016 - Exchanges on Central and West Africa 

Photo credit UNODC BrusselsMr Pierre Lapaque, the Representative of UNODC's Regional Office for West and Central Africa (located in Senegal), came to Brussels to attend meetings with various EU counterparts (DG DEVCO, DG HOME and EEAS) to discuss the major threats and challenges in West and Central Africa, as well as in the Sahel region, and to explore possible synergies for future cooperation. 

 

 

 

 

 

14 - 15 November 2016 - E xchanges on  Counter Terrorism 

Ms Elena Rigacci Hay, the Policy Coordination Officer at UNODC's Terrorism Prevention Branch, was invited by The North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) to attend a "NATO and Partners' Information Day on Counter-Terrorism Cooperation" in Brussels. She took the opportunity to  held meetings with various EU counterparts (such as EEAS, DG DEVCO, DG NEAR, the Council of the EU) to discuss cooperation in terrorism prevention. She also met with the Belgian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Mandate of the Terrorism Prevention Branch
Work of the Terrorism Prevention Branch
Organization of the Terrorism Prevention Branch

 

10 - 11 November 2016 - Exchanges on Eastern Africa

Mr Jose Vila Del Castillo, UNODC Representative of the Regional Office for Eastern Africa in Kenya, was in Brussels from 10 to 11 November 2016,  for the 5th Steering Committee meeting of the Better Migration Management (BMM) project financed by the European Union Emergency Trust Fund for Africa and co-financed by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).  The meeting addressed initiatives to curb human trafficking and smuggling of migrants within and from the Horn of Africa. UNODC is one of the implementing partners. Mr Vila Del Castillo also seized the opportunity of his presence in Brussels to have meetings with DG DEVCO and the EEAS calling for a joint EU/UNODC working group to develop an Action Plan on Transnational Organised Crime and Terrorism in Eastern Africa. 

 

3 - 4 November - Exchanges on the Western Balkans & on West and Central Asia

Mr Alexandre Schmidt, Chief of the Regional Section for Europe, West and Central Asia, came to Brussels to exchange with counterparts at the EEAS and at the European Commission (DG NEAR) on the extended partnership within the IPA (EU Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance) Western Balkan Integrative Internal Security Governance initiative, and the priority attention to support national and regional capacity building to address illicit financial flows in West and Central Asia.

 

27 - 28 October 2016 - the Better Migration Management (BMM) Implementing Committee

Photo credit UNODC BrusselsMr Johan Kruger, Head of Transnational Organized Crime and Terrorism Programmes at the Regional Office for Eastern Africa (located in Kenya), came to Brussels to attend the first meeting of the Better Migration Management (BMM) Implementing Committee hosted by the GIZ Brussels Representation. The BMM project, financed by the European Union Emergency Trust Fund for Africa and co-financed by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), has at its overall objective to improve migration management in the region, and in particular to address the Trafficking of Persons and Smuggling of Migrants within and from the Horn of Africa - especially Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, South-Sudan, Sudan and Uganda. UNODC - through the Regional Office for Eastern Africa (ROEA) and Regional Office for the Middle East and North Africa (ROMENA) - will, as one of the implementing partners of the project, be responsible for coordinating implementation of key components of the project: Coordinating implementation of activities related to regional policy and legislative harmonization, especially the incorporation of the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime and its Protocols against Trafficking in Persons and Smuggling of Migrants; and coordinating capacity building activities related to improved victim-centred law enforcement and prosecution responses to Trafficking in Persons and Smuggling of Migrants.      

 

26 - 27 October 2016 - EU funded Cocaine Route Programme Steering Committee

The UNODC AIRCOP Programme Coordinator, from the UNODC Regional Office for West and Central Africa in Senegal, and Mr Marco Teixeira, the  Programme Officer from the Organized Crime and Illicit Trafficking Branch in Vienna, respectively implementing the Airport Communication Project ( AIRCOP) and the Strengthening Criminal Investigation and Criminal Justice Project ( CRIMJUST), came to Brussels to attend the EU funded Cocaine Route Programme Steering Committee, organised by the Cocaine Route Monitoring and Support Project CORMS III. The UNODC delegation seized the occasion to discuss the trends regarding international cocaine trafficking and ways to continue uploading a synergic approach between both projects. 

  

24 October 2016 - Today we celebrated the 71st  anniversary of the United Nations ! 

On the occasion of the 71st  anniversary of the United Nations,   CIFAL Flanders / UNITAR  hosted, in collaboration with United Nations Association Flanders ( VVN) and the United Nations Regional Information Centre ( UNRIC), the UN Day in the Flemish Parliament. In his opening speech,  Mr  Geert Bourgeois, Minister-president of the Flemish Government, briefed on the cooperation between the UN and Flanders. Senior UN officials, Director of the ILO  Claire Courteille-Mulder, Head of UNIDO  Christophe Yvetot,  Chief of Mission of the IOM-UN Migration Agency  Laura Palatini, and  Ambassador Bénédicte Frankinet, formerly Belgium's Permanent Representative to the UN, were invited to reflect on the mandates of Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the challenges for the coming years. The High Level Panel was followed by a statement from the Belgian artist Ozark Henry, the UNODC national Goodwill Ambassador against Human Trafficking, who urged for intensified action to combat human trafficking. He also recalled that through the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the International Community has committed itself to the promotion of peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, to the provision of access to justice for all and to the building of effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels (SDG 16).  "We have collectively committed to combat all forms of organized crime, including trafficking in persons. Let's give victims hope and justice". 

Read UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's message here.

 

20 - 21 October 2016 - The UNODC - SADC Regional Program

Ms Zhuldyz Akisheva, the Representative of the UNODC Regional Office for Southern Africa (located in Pretoria, South Africa) came on mission to Brussels to meet key EU counterparts working in the Southern Africa region. She met EU officials from DG DEVCO and the EEAS, and she briefed them on the main priorities for UNODC work in the Region under the UNODC - SADC Regional Program "Making the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Region Safer from Crime and Drugs". Discussion allowed exchange of views on the developments in the Region in the areas of security and human rights as well as on possible areas for cooperation between EU and the UNODC Regional Office for Southern Africa.

 

18 - 20 October 2016 - United Nations SDG Action Stand in the European Parliament

On the occasion of United Nations Day (24 October), the UN Team in Brussels organised an SDG Action Stand in the European Parliament to bring the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to the heart of Europe. Building on the long-standing partnership between the United Nations and the European Union, the SDG Action Stand in the European Parliament provided a unique opportunity to engage on how we can jointly advance the implementation of the SDGs in Europe and globally.

Through its work at global, regional and national levels, UNODC provides support to Member States to reach their Targets under the various SDGs.

 

Here are the main goals that UNODC supports.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

18 October 2016 - 10th EU Anti-Trafficking Day

Photo credit UNODC BrusselsIn order to mark the 10th EU Anti-Trafficking Day, the European Commission organised a press conference the day before during the Eighth Conference of Parties of the United Nations Convention on Transnational and Organised Crime (UNTOC) in Vienna, to which the EU is a party. This side event, titled "Countering trafficking in Persons - Contributing to a Global Compact on Migration" brought together EU Member States and international partners in joint efforts on enhancing the implementation of UNTOC's protocol on trafficking in persons in line with the priorities agreed under the New York Declaration. Countries have committed themselves, under the declaration, to start negotiations for the adoption of a global compact for safe, orderly and regular migration in 2018. Mr Yury Fedotov, the UNODC Executive Director, called on all countries to join the fight against traffickers and migrant smugglers: " Success can only come through greater cooperation and collaboration, and the full implementation of the UN Convention on Transnational Organized Crime and its protocols on human trafficking and migrant smuggling." Other participants included Ms Myria Vassiliadou, EU Anti-Trafficking Coordinator, who presented the Comprehensive Policy Review of Anti-Trafficking Projects, a study completed as a deliverable of the EU Strategy towards the Eradication of Trafficking in Human Beings. " The European Commission will continue to support financially such efforts against trafficking in human beings: efforts to protect the victims, prosecute the perpetrators and prevent the crime from happening in the first place".

 

13 - 14 October 2016 - 12th Annual FAFA Working Group Meeting 

Ms Yatta Dakowah, Representative of the Brussels Liaison Office, and Mr Alasdair Taylor, Finance Officer from the Financial resources Management Service at UNODC Vienna, attended the12th Annual Meeting of the Working Group - established under article 13.1 of the Financial and Administrative Framework Agreement ( FAFA) between the EU and the UN. The meeting was co-chaired by Ms. Bettina Tucci Bartsiotas, Assistant Secretary General, UN Controller and the Messrs. Roberto Ridolfi, Director "Sustainable Growth and Development" and Luc Bagur, Director "Resources and Centre of Gravity of Human Resources in Delegation" at DG DEVCO.

 

12 - 13 October 2016 - AIRCOP Steering Committee Meeting at WCO

Programme Officers from the UNODC Dakar, Panama and Cairo Offices, implementing the UNODC - INTERPOL - WCO Airport Communication Programme ( AIRCOP), came to Brussels to attend the 9th Steering Committee meeting of the EC funded Cocaine Route programme. The AIRCOP team presented an update of the project in terms of achievements, funding, challenges, perspectives and ways forward 2017 - 2018 (the launch of AIRCOP IV).

 

 

5 October 2016 - the Brussels Conference on Afghanistan, partnership for prosperity and peace

On 5 October, the European Union and the government of Afghanistan co-hosted the Brussels Conference on Afghanistan. This conference brought together 75 countries and 26 international organisations and agencies. The opening session of the conference included speeches by President of the European Council Donald Tusk, President of Afghanistan Ashraf Ghani, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and US Secretary of State John Kerry. The morning session was chaired by EU High Representative Federica Mogherini and Afghan Minister of Foreign Affairs Salahuddin Rabbani. The afternoon session was chaired by the Afghan Minister of Finance Eklil Hakimi and the European Commissioner for Development Cooperation Neven Mimica. UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov also addressed the conference, recalling that " we need long-term resources, strengthened regional cooperation and the strong political commitment and continued engagement of the Afghan government and international community". Full speech here.

 

4 October 2016 - the Brussels Conference on Afghanistan - side event on Economic Development in Afghanistan

Ms Melissa Tullis, Senior Policy Support at the Office of the Director for Division of Policy Analysis in Vienna, was invited by the Ministry of Finance to participate in a meeting entitled "The Brussels Conference and Economic Development in Afghanistan", in order to join a discussion on economic growth, sustainability and PFM reforms in the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan. This meeting was scheduled on the sidelines of the Brussels Conference on Afghanistan.

 

3 - 4 October 2016 - Exchanges on Organised Crime an Smuggling of Migrants

Ms Kristiina Kangaspunta, Chief of the UNODC Crime Research Section, came to Brussels to participate in the Conference on "The growing threat of trafficking in women, sexual exploitation and prostitution: protecting human rights of women and ending violence". She addressed the high-level panel "Focus on the gender dimension of trafficking, using a human rights and victims centered approach" with a focus on how to protect the rights of the victims of sexual exploitation. Ms Kangaspunta also met with counterparts from DG DEVCO and DG HOME to discuss the activities related on Organised Crime an Smuggling of Migrants.

 

21 - 23 September - Exchanges on the UNODC Container Control Programme

Photo credit UNODC BrusselsMr Bob Vandenberghe, Law Enforcement Expert working for the UNODC Container Control Programme in our Regional Office for Central America and the Caribbean in Panama, came to Brussels to exchange with the WCO partners. He took the occasion to meet with counterparts at the EEAS and at DG DEVCO to brief on the actual status of the implementation of UNODC - WCO Container Control Programme in the LAC region and to discuss new activities of the Container Control Programme in Bolivia.

 

 

 

 

15 September 2016 - 2016 NATO Comprehensive Approach Awareness Course

Ms Katerina Buhayets, Training and Networking Expert from the Global Programme against Money Laundering, Proceeds of Crime and Financing of Terrorism (GPML) at UNODC Vienna particpated in the 2016 NATO Comprehensive Approach Awareness Course in Brussels. She also held bi-lateral meetings with DG DEVCO counterparts to discuss anti-money-laundering and countering the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) programs in Central Asia.

 

12 September 2016 - the Bertelsmann Foundation's Congressional European Parliamentary Initiative 

The Bertelmann Foundation invited the UNODC Brussels Liaison Office to participate in the Bertelsmann Foundation's Congressional European Parliamentary Initiative with the CEPI delegation from the European Parliament, the U.S. Congress, and the German Bundestag to exchange experiences and ideas. Since this year's program is focused on migration, the chief of the UNODC HTMSS Section Mr Ilias Chatzis, joined the meeting and presented UNODC's work on Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling.

 

28 - 29 August - Exchange on Eastern Europe and Security Sector Reform

Mr Alexandre Schmidt, Chief of the Regional Section for Europe, West and Central Asia, and Ms Aisser Al Hafedh, Desk Officer for Eastern Europe and focal point for Security Sector Reform, came to Brussels to exchange with counterparts at the EEAS and at the European Commission (DG NEAR and DG DEVCO) on Western Balkans and Eastern Europe as well as on Security Sector Reform. On this occasion, Ms Al Hafedh presented the last Integrated Technical Guidance Note of the United Nations SSR Task Force on Transnational Organized Crime and Security Sector Reform.

 

30 June 2016 - EU - UNODC GLO.ACT Project Steering Committee meeting

Photo credit UNODC BrusselsUNODC Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling Section, represented by the GLO.ACT Team - Ms Margaret Akullo and Ms Aimée Comrie, attended the EU-UNODC Project Steering Committee Meeting in Brussels to update the EU on GLO.ACT's implementation and next steps. GLO.ACT - the Global Action against Trafficking in Persons and Smuggling of Migrants - is a EU-UNODC global initiative being delivered in 13 countries and implemented in partnership with IOM and UNICEF. UNODC colleagues from Vienna joined the meeting by VTC and provided key updates on consultations with beneficiary countries.

 

30 June 2016 - Steering Committee Meeting "Better Migration Management"

UNODC was invited to join the consortium implementing the action "Better Migration Management in Support of the Khartoum Process", which is funded by the EU and the German government. Mr Julien Garsany from the UNODC office in the MENA region and Mr Johan Kruger from the UNODC office in Eastern Africa, participated in the 4th Steering Committee Meeting held in Brussels to prepare for the implementation of the project.

- Better Migration Management 

 

29 June 2016 - Counter terrorism exchange

Ms Dolgor Solongo, Chief of the regional section for Asia and Europe of UNODC's Terrorism Prevention Branch, participated in an event on terrorism prevention in the European Parliament. She also met with counterparts at the EEAS and at the European Commission (DG JUSTICE, DG DEVCO and DG NEAR) to exchange on initiatives in Europe and Asia.

 

28 - 29 June 2016 - Training on partnership building in Vienna

Photo credit UNODC BrusselsFor the 6th time, UNODC and the other Vienna based UN agencies got together for the annual training on ' how to build and sustain a successful partnership with the EU, including on the Financial and Administrative Framework Agreement (the FAFA) between the EU and the UN, and the applicable contract formats'. The training was well attended and will contribute to the professional application of provisions applying to joint programmes with the EU and a smooth collaborative relationship.

 

20 - 21 June 2016 - EU - UNODC Latin America and Caribbean workshop

Photo credit UNODC BrusselsOn invitation by the European External Action Service (EEAS), UNODC Representatives in the Latin America and Caribbean region, the Chief of the LAC Regional Section and various colleagues from UNODC Vienna covering law enforcement, money laundering, terrorist financing, and wildlife and forest crime - came to Brussels for exchanges on various aspects of mutual interest with regards to the region. The meeting was joined by the European Commission (DG DEVCO, DG ENV), the Council Secretariat and the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCCDA). The UNODC delegation also held bilateral meetings with various counterparts in the EEAS and DG DEVCO on specific countries.

 

15 - 16 June 2016 - 10th anniversary of European Development Days

The UNODC Brussels team attended, along with the other Brussels based UN agencies, the 10th anniversary of the European Development Days, organised by the European Commission. This year's edition of Europe's leading forum on global development and cooperation focused on implementing the United Nations 17 Sustainable Development Goals, building upon 5 vital ''P''s for sustainable development: Partnership, Peace, Prosperity, Planet and People. Key players from across the world came together to share ideas and experiences, to make new partnerships and to shape the future with prominent decision makers and hundreds of speakers, civil society organisations and international organisations. 

Photo credit UNODC BrusselsThe United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon along with World Bank President Jim Kim and European Commissioner Neven Mimica visted the UN ‪#‎EDD16‬ stand.

- European Development Days
- Sustainable Development Goals
- Video by SDG Action Campaign team
- Video on #globalgoals by UNRIC

 

 

 

7 June 2016 - Ciné ONU: Racing Extinction

Photo credit UNODC BrusselsUNODC partnered with the  United Nations Regional Information Centre (UNRIC), the  United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the  World Wildlife Fund (WWF) for the screening of Racing Extinction to mark World Environment Day, which this year is around the theme of ending illegal trade in wildlife. The documentary assembles a team of artists and activists on an undercover operation to expose the hidden world of endangered species and the race to protect them against mass extinction. After the screening, the audience members were captivated by a panel discussion moderated by the Director of UNRIC,  Ms Deborah Seward. Panellists included  Mr Pierre-Yves Cousteau, diver, conservationist and son of legendary explorer Jacques Cousteau,  Mr Jorge Rios, Head of  UNODC's Global Programme on Wildlife and Forest Crime, and  Mr Philippe Mayaux from the European Commission (DG DEVCO).

    

7 - 8 June 2016 - Exchange on Cybercrime

Mr Neil Walsh, UNODC Senior Expert of Cyber and Emerging Crime, came to Brussels to brief an Internet and Drugs Expert Meeting on invitation by the European Commission (DG HOME). Our colleague explained the capabilities that UNODC's Global Programme on Cybercrime can bring to countering cyber-enabled crimes internationally. He also took the opportunity to meet with EEAS counterparts to discuss ongoing collaboration and future cooperation.

  

2 June 2016 - Exchange on firearms control

The coordinator of UNODC's Global Firearms Programme, Ms Simonetta Grassi, met with various representatives from the European Commission (DG HOME, DG DEVCO and the EEAS) to discuss firearms control initiatives and possible cooperation.

 

31 May 2016 - World Wildlife Crime report

UNODC launched the first global World Wildlife Crime Report during the UN Crime Commission in Vienna on 24 May 2016. On invitation by Ms Catherine Bearder and Mr Gerben-Jan Gerbrandy, Members of the European Parliament, Mr Ted Leggett, UNODC Lead Researcher for the report, and Mr Jorge Rios, Head of UNODC's Global Programme on Wildlife and Forest Crime came to Brussels today to present the report in the European Parliament. They were joined for the panel discussion by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), Interpol and Representatives of the European Commission's DG Environment and DG Development.

World Wildlife Crime Report

 

26 May 2016 - Human rights aspects in counter terrorism work

Mr Ulrich Garms from UNODC's Terrorism Prevention Branch participated in the International Commission of Jurists meeting on Human Rights aspects of counter Foreign Terrorist Fighters measures, held in Brussels. He also met counterparts from the European Commission to discuss the topics as well as UNODC's work on children associated with violent extremism.

 

25 May 2016 - EU and UNODC Cooperation to Prevent and Combat Trafficking in Persons and the Smuggling of Migrants: Introducing GLO.ACT

During this week's Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice (CCPCJ) in Vienna, the government of Colombia, the European Union and the UNODC Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling Section organised a high-level event on the recently launched Global Action against Trafficking in Persons and the Smuggling of Migrants. The four-year initiative was presented by the GLO.ACT Coordinator, Ms Margaret Akullo, followed by speeches of Mr. Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of UNODC, H.E. Ambassador Didier Lenoir, Head of the EU Delegation, Ms. Myria Vassiliadou, EU Anti-Trafficking Coordinator. The high-level event was moderated by Ambassador Jaime A. Cabal Sanclemente, Permanent Representative of Colombia to the United Nations in Vienna.

" For all of the positive effects of migration, these unprecedented flows of people are generating new criminal opportunities, particularly for migrant smugglers and human traffickers ," noted UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov at the event. " At-risk migrants, especially children, have become easy targets for abuse and exploitation, and clearly more needs to be done to reduce vulnerabilities, enhance protection and stop the criminals. The continuing crises which we're witnessing makes it even more critical that we take steps to address these shortcomings and strengthen criminal justice responses. Our project with the European Union seeks to do exactly that ." This was echoed by Ms Myria Vassiliadou, the EU Anti-Trafficking Coordinator: " Our partnership with UNODC is a strategic and a longstanding one. Our response must be comprehensive: addressing people's vulnerabilities and treating victims as rights holders, as well as cracking down on the profits and reducing demand that fuels trafficking. Victims must not be punished. Together with UNODC we can stop a culture of impunity for those who treat human beings as commodities. GLO.ACT can contribute in realizing this and we look forward to achieving results and impact ."

 

23 May 2016 - Enlargement package consultations

UNODC's Brussels office, Mr Ugo Vuillard-Cornu, participated in this year's consultations at the DG Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations (DG NEAR) on the European Commission 2016 Enlargement Package.

 

12 May 2016 - Counter Terrorist Financing and Money Laundering

On invitation of the DG HOME, Mr Oleksiy Feshchenko and Mr Alain Nkoyock from UNODC Vienna came to address the meeting of the EU FIU Platform. Our colleagues presented " goAML", the UNODC standard software system available for Financial Intelligence Units to counter terrorist financing and money laundering. Both took the opportunity to meet with counterparts from DG DEVCO and the EEAS to discuss responses to money laundering and terrorism financing related issues.

 

12 - 13 May 2016 - East Africa and MENA region

From the UNODC office in Nairobi Mr Jose Vila del Castillo, Regional Representative for Eastern Africa, and Mr Julien Garsany, Deputy Representative in the regional office for the Middle East and North Africa, attended the Steering Committee Meeting of the EC funded "Better Migration Management" project, for which UNODC joined the implementing consortium. Both also met with counterparts in the European institutions to exchange views on the situation in the regions they cover and discuss international support in the mandate areas of UNODC.

 

10 - 11 May 2016 - HIV/AIDS

Ms Monica Beg, Chief of the HIV/AIDS Section and her colleague Ms Fariba Soltani, came to Brussels to brief the EU Council's Horizontal Working Party on Drugs on UNODC work on HIV/AIDS. Our colleagues also met with counterparts from the European External Action Service the Commission's DG for Development and the DG for Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement to discuss the epidemic and UNODC's work addressing it among drug users and in prison settings.

   

3 May 2016 - Steering Committee meeting of the EC funded UNODC-CITES Asia Wildlife Enforcement and Demand Management Project

On invitation of the European Commission, Mr Jorge Rios, Chief of the Global Programme to Combat Wildlife and Forest Crime and Chief of the Sustainable Livelihoods Unit, and his Colleague Ms Olga Kuzmianok came to Brussels to attend the first Steering Committee meeting of the EC funded UNODC-CITES Asia Wildlife Enforcement and Demand Management Project.

 

 

 

 

 

18 - 19 April 2016 - Counter Terrorism meetings

Mr Trevor Rajah, Chief of the Terrorism Prevention Branch and his colleague Ms Elena Rigacci Hay met with counterparts in EU institutions to exchange on developments with regards to terrorism prevention and possible cooperation between the institutions. They also had an exchange with the Belgian Ministry for Foreign Affairs.

 

 

 

 

13 April 2016 - Cocaine Route Programme Steering Committee Meeting

On invitation of the EC, UNODC team members implementing the Airport Communication Programme AIRCOP, came to Brussels to attend the Steering Committee meeting of the EC funded Cocaine Route programme. They presented the last achievements of the AIRCOP Programme, the future challenges and synergies with other relevant initiatives addressing drug trafficking.

 

 

 

 

 

29 March to 1 April 2016 - UNODC-WCO Container Control Programme meetings

Our colleague Mr Ketil Ottersen, senior programme coordinator of the UNODC-WCO Container Control Programme, came to Brussels this week for meetings at the World Customs Organization. In parallel, he took the opportunity to meet with our EU counterparts (DG DEVCO, DG TAXUD, DG NEAR) to brief them on the regional activities of the Global Container Control Programme. Mr Ottersen was accompanied by his counterpart at WCO, Mr Norbert Steilen. Please find our Annual Report 2015 here.

 

 

 

 

17 March 2016 - DG DEVCO InfoPoint Conference - "Time to Stop Illegal Wildlife Trafficking"

Mr Jorge Rios, Chief of the UNODC Global Programme for Combatting Wildlife and Forest Crime, came to Brussels to address a DG DEVCO InfoPoint Conference on Illegal Wildlife Trafficking. The EU Action Plan against wildlife trafficking, ongoing WWF initiatives and the new action on law enforcement and demand management of wildlife in Asia, implemented by UNODC and CITES, were presented. Mr Rios also met with EC counterparts and MEPs for Wildlife to inform on activities on wildlife and forest crime on UN level, and discuss possibilities for cooperation.

 

 

 

2 - 3 March 2016 - Meeting on new psychoactive substances

Mr Martin Raithelhuber, Illicit Synthetic Drug Expert and Global SMART (Synthethics Monitoring: Analysis, Reporting and Trends) Programme Manager, attended the 35th Session of the World Customs Organization Enforcement Committee and briefed the Committee on new psychoactive substances (NPS). Our colleague also met with our E.C. counterparts.

 

18 - 19 February 2016 - Afghanistan

Mr Andrey Avetisyan, UNODC Representative in Afghanistan and Mr Jean-Luc Lemahieu, UNODC Director of the Division for Policy Analysis and Public Affairs, came to Brussels for NATO staff talks covering Afghanistan, Central Asia, the Western Balkans and Terrorism prevention, following the annual briefing by Mr Avetisyan on the Afghan narcotics situation to NATO's " Deputies Committee". Mr Avetisyan seized the opportunity to meet counterparts from the EEAS, DG DEVCO and the European Parliament for exchanges on Afghanistan. And Mr Lemahieu met EEAS counterparts and representatives from the Belgian Development Cooperation.

 

 

 

15 - 16 February 2016 - Meeting on drug precursor control in Latin America

On invitation by the European Commission's DG DEVCO, Mr Hector Wong (UNODC Peru) and Mr Hernando Bernal (UNODC Colombia), both working on the PRELAC project - " Prevention of the diversion of drugs precursors in the Latin American and Caribbean region" - came to Brussels for a meeting to share results and experiences of the project since it is coming to an end.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2 February 2016 - Meeting Thai delegation on Container Control Programme

UNODC and the World Customs Organisation hosted a delegation from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Thailand, led by Mr. Jakkri Srivali, Director General, Department of ASEAN Affairs, to provide a briefing on the Global Container Control Programme, a joint UNODC-WCO initiative, and the Project Global Shields, a UNODC-WCO-Interpol cooperation. Mr. Jakkri Srivali was interested in the programmes in the context of the increasing regional integration in the ASEAN region and the implications of more open borders for illicit trafficking.

 

26 January 2016 - Horn of Africa meeting

Mr Alan Cole, Head of UNODC's Global Maritime Crime Programme, and his colleague Mr Bart Hulsbosch, both based in our Nairobi Office, followed the invitation by the EEAS to attend a workshop on the Horn of Africa. They presented UNODC's activities, results and work plan for 2016, including synergies with EUCAP Nestor.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

22 January 2016 - Exchange on monitoring of SDG implementation

In meetings with the European Commission's DG DEVCO and DG HOME, Mr Enrico Bisogno and Ms Kobi Mulligan from UNODC's Research and Trend Analysis Branch discussed the global system for international SDG monitoring which is currently being established, with a specific focus on Goal 16 ( Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels) and other goals in areas covered by UNODC's mandates. They also met with counterparts in DG NEAR to discuss measuring organised crime in the Western Balkans to support evidence based policy making.

 

21 - 22 January 2016 - AIRCOP Steering Committee Meeting

The UNODC project coordinator of the AIRCOP project, and members of the project team, came to Brussels to convene a Steering Committee meeting with implementing partners (WCO and Interpol) and EU counterparts to discuss project progress, the work plan for the coming period and synergies with other relevant initiatives addressing drug trafficking.

 

21 January 2016 - Launch of the Global Action to Prevent and Address Trafficking in Persons and the Smuggling of Migrants

With a DG DEVCO - Infopoint event the new EC funded " Global Action to Prevent and Address Trafficking in Persons and the Smuggling of Migrants" which UNODC implements in partnership with IOM and UNICEF was launched. The project will be implemented over the next 4 years in up to 15 strategically selected countries across Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe and Latin America. Mr John Brandolino, UNODC's Director for Treaty Affairs, spoke at the event, along with Ms Myria Vassiliadou, EU Anti Trafficking Coordinator, Mr. Stefano Signore from DG DEVCO, and representatives from IOM and UNICEF. He was accompanied by colleagues from UNODC's Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling Section, Mr Ilias Chatzis, Ms Margaret Akullo and Ms Euridice Marquez.

 

8 December 2015 - European Parliament event on migrant smuggling

On invitation by the European Parliament, MEP Ms. Mariya Gabriel, for a conference on "Fighting migrant smuggling: Tools, gaps and challenges" Ms Martina Hanke, UNODC Representative in Brussels, spoke about the international policy frameworks and initiatives on migrant smuggling, especially UNODC's activities contributing to international efforts to address the smuggling of migrants across the Mediterranean through capacity building as part of an integrated response.

 

7 and 8 December 2015 - Exchange on Container Control Programme in Latin America

Mr Bob Van den Berghe, Regional coordinator of the Global Container Control Programme in Latin America, came to Brussels for exchanges with counterparts in the European Commission, DG DEVCO and the EEAS. The programme establishes effective container controls that serve to prevent trafficking of illicit drugs, chemical, biological, radioactive or nuclear (CBRN) material, weapons of mass destruction (WMD) and other illicitly trafficked goods such as wildlife, timber and contraband,and hence facilitates legitimate trade and contributes to raising state revenues. It has links to important other programmes funded by the EU, and working on complementary issues.

 

4 December 2015 - Annual EU - UNODC Senior Officials Meeting

The 11th Annual Senior Officials Meeting took place in Brussels, lead by the EEAS and headed by Mr. Stephan Auer, Deputy Managing Director Human Rights, Global and Multilateral Issues. A delegation from UNODC attended, including Mr Aldo Lale-Demoz, Director for Operations, Mr Jean-Luc Lemahieu, Director for Policy Analysis and Public Affairs, and Mr John Brandolino, Director for Treaty Affairs, as well as colleagues in charge of regional or thematic Sections: Ms Cherine Rahmy, Chief of the Regional Section for Africa and the Middle East, Mr Alexandre Schmidt, Chief of the Regional Section for Europe, West and Central Asia, Mr Ilias Chatzis, Chief of the Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling Section, Mr Trevor Rajah, Chief of the Terrorism Prevention Branch, and Mr Pierre Lapaque, Representative of the Regional Office for West and Central Africa. The meeting focussed on discussing the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals, in relation to drugs policy, wildlife and forest crime, human trafficking and migrant smuggling and counter terrorism, and exchanged strategic views on Afghanistan and Central Asia, Latin America and Africa.

 

3 December 2015 - EC - UNODC Annual Operational Exchange meeting

A delegation from UNODC HQs, headed by Mr Trevor Rajah, Chief of the Terrorism Prevention Branch, came to Brussels for the 4th Annual Operational Exchange Meeting, lead by DG DEVCO and chaired by Mr Adriaan Van der Meer, Head of Unit -Stability, Security, Development and Nuclear Safety. The meeting discussed a range of operational issues of common interest, ranging form human rights safeguards, smuggling of migrants, organised crime, operationalisation of the Sustainable Development Goals to counter terrorism.

 

3 December 2015 - Presentation of a UNODC report "Drug Money: the illicit proceeds of opiates trafficked on the Balkan route"

In the context of controlling the supply and demand of illicit drugs, and lessening their burden on the social and economic fabric and stability of United Nations Member States, UNODC has set itself the goal of improving understanding of the economics behind the trafficking of opiates originating in Afghanistan, the source of the vast majority of the world's illicit opiates. A newly released report estimating the monetary value of illicit opiates trafficked on the main conduit for illicit Afghan opiates to Europe, the so-called "Balkan route" was presented in Brussels. The event was chaired by Mr Aldo Lale-Demoz, UNODC Deputy Executive Director and Director for Operations, a detailed presentation of the report was provided by Ms Angela Me, Chief of the Research and Trend Analysis Branch, and Mr Alexandre Schmidt, Chief of the Regional Section for Europe, West & Central Asia.

 

2 - 4 December 2015 - West and Central Africa

Mr Pierre Lapaque, UNODC Regional Representative for West and Central Africa, and his colleague Ms Clementine Faget, came to Brussels to meet counterparts at DG DEVCO, the EEAS, the European Parliament and the ACP secretariat, to discuss developments in West and Central Africa, in particular with regards to organised crime, human trafficking and migrant smuggling, and the assistance required from the international community. He also participated in the exchange on Africa during the EU - UNODC Senior Officials Meeting.

 

13 November 2015 - Presentation of a campaign on smuggling of migrants

A presentation of a new public awareness raising campaign was provided by Mr Felipe de La Torre, Regional Adviser Against Human Trafficking And Smuggling Of Migrants, UNODC Office in Mexico for participants from various EU counterpart agencies and with participation of the Permanent Representation of Mexico. The campaign was developed in the framework of an EU funded regional project to promote international cooperation and coordination between Mexico and Central America to prevent and combat the smuggling of migrants, and seeks to raise awareness about the risks associated with the recruitment of smugglers and to show the connections between smuggling of migrants by land, sea and air and other serious organised crimes.

 

11 November 2015 - European Parliament event on wildlife trafficking

Mr Jorge Rios, UNODC's Chief of the Sustainable Livelihoods Unit, which also covers wildlife and forest crime, was invited by the European Parliamentary Interest Group MEPs for Wildlife, and the Born Free Foundation to an event discussing the forthcoming EC Action Plan on wildlife trafficking from different angles. He gave a presentation on the UN perspective, the recent UN Resolution on wildlife trafficking, and UNODC's work on the issue.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4 - 5 November 2015 - Cocaine Route Programme Steering Committee

As UNODC is an implementing partner in the EC's Cocaine Route Programme, managers of projects and other UNODC officials working on related issues were invited to attend the meeting. Some colleagues also used the opportunity for meeting counterparts in the EEAS and DG DEVCO to discuss the peace process in the country and the support from the international community.

 

 

 

 

 

3 November 2015 - UNGASS 2016 briefing to the Council of the European Union, Horizontal Working Party on Drugs

On invitation of the EU Presidency, Luxembourg, H.E. Ambassador Khaled Shamaa (Egypt), Chairperson of the Board tasked by the Commission on Narcotic Drugs with the preparations for the special session of the General Assembly on the world drug problem, UNGASS, to be held in 2016, came to Brussels to brief the Horizontal Working Party on Drugs of the Council of the European Union on the state of preparations for the UNGASS. He was accompanied by Ms Jo Dedeyne-Amann, Chief of the Secretariat to the Governing Bodies of UNODC.

 

25 October 2015 - United Nations Seventieth Anniversary

24 October 2015 marked the 70 th anniversary of the United Nations and the entry into force of the United Nations Charter in 1945. On this occasion the UN team in Brussels gathered to celebrate the day on the Brussels Grand Place on Sunday 25 October. All participating agencies presented themselves to the public to promote the work of the UN. To see the video of this year's UN Day celebration, produced by UNRIC, click here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

21 October 2015 - Ozark Henry appointed UNODC Goodwill Ambassador for Belgium against human trafficking

The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime has appointed Piet Goddaer (aka Ozark Henry) as its new National Goodwill Ambassador against human trafficking. The new appointment of Mr. Goddaer, a well-known Belgian performing artist, is aimed at increasing visibility and assisting in mobilizing support in Belgium to tackle human trafficking. Mr. Goddaer explained one of the reasons as to why he has decided to work with UNODC, specifically on its anti-human trafficking work: " Many victims of human trafficking are out there. We just don't see them or want to see them. From the kids being forced to beg on the streets to those being forced or coerced to be sex workers or work illegally in sweatshops. We live happily in our own little worlds, going on with our own daily business. I felt it was time to act and to try and do something about this and make a difference in raising awareness and supporting organizations working to combat this modern day form of slavery." Read the full story here.

 

Learn more on how you can get involved in UNODC's Blue Heart Campaign against Human Trafficking and help mobilize governments, Civil Society Organizations, media and private sector to expose and combat this crime by visiting endht.org

 

15 - 16 October 2015 - Exchange on the Western Balkans and Central Asia

Mr Alexandre Schmidt, Chief, Regional Section for Europe, West and Central Asia and Regional Representative for South Eastern Europe, met the EU Special Representative Ambassador Mr. Burian to exchange on Central Asia, and updated counterparts in DG NEAR on the upcoming UNODC Regional Programme for the Western Balkans.

 

12 October 2015 - Public hearing on migrant smuggling

On invitation by the European Economic and Social Committee, Ms Martina Hanke, UNODC Representative in Brussels, delivered a key note address in a public hearing to feed into the preparation of an EESC opinion on the "EU Action Plan against migrant smuggling" which was published by the European Commission. The speech focused on highlighting the provisions of the UNTOC Protocol on Migrant Smuggling and how the EU Action Plan aligns with it.

 

23 September 2015 - European Parliament, Drug policy meeting

On invitation by MEP Mr. Michal Boni and EURAD, a European non profit drug policy Foundation, over 100 Members of the European Parliament, researchers, NGO representatives and government observers met at the European Parliament to discuss the United Nation's forthcoming Global Drug Policy Review (UNGASS), which will take place in April 2016 in New York. Ms Tatiana Jehl from UNODC provided the first presentation of the event to brief participants on the preparatory process and current status.

 

 

 

 

22 - 23 September 2015 - Migration Management Meeting

Ms Euridice Marquez and Ms Aimee Comrie, both working in the Human Trafficking and Smuggling of Migrants Section at UNODC HQs, came to Brussels to participate in an ICMPD - EC conference, "Advancing Migration Cooperation through Demand-Driven Capacity Building: MIEUX's Peer-to-Peer Approach" as well as a workshop on delivering capacity building in the area of migration. They also held side meetings with EC counterparts to discuss cooperation on human trafficking and migrant smuggling.

 

27 July 2015 - Expert workshop on migrant smuggling

To contribute to a study commissioned by DG HOME on the legal framework related to the facilitation of irregular migration (migrant smuggling), Ms Morgane Nicot from UNODC's Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling Section, participated in the first expert group meeting held in Brussels.

 

27 July 2015 - Wildlife and forest crime exchange

In a meeting with DG DEVCO, Mr Jorge Rios, Chief of the Sustainable Livelihoods Unit of UNODC and his colleague Ms Olga Kuzmianok, discussed progress and challenges with addressing wildlife an forest crime and possibilities for enhancing cooperation.

 

16 July 2015 - Terrorism and organized crime discussed at meeting with EU High Representative

© EEASAfter meeting with the High Representative of the European Union on Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Ms Federica Mogherini, the UNODC Executive Director, Mr Yury Fedotov, underscored the EU's importance as a longstanding ally in global efforts against drugs, crime, corruption and terrorism.

Describing the talks as both valuable and productive, Mr. Fedotov said he stressed the need to confront migrant smuggling in the Mediterranean and elsewhere by staunchly protecting the victims, and by maximising use of the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime and its protocol on smuggling of migrants.

He said UNODC had developed a strategy that coordinated efforts with regional and international initiatives and enabled joint action against the smugglers.

Mr. Fedotov also said he warmly welcomed the recent agreement of the EU to provide funding to UNODC to combat human trafficking and migrant smuggling.

"The smuggling of migrants is a 21st century tragedy. Given the high number of deaths, it is essential that we end this crime and provide victims with much needed support and assistance. A person's desperate desire for a better life should not end in a cruel death, " he said.

The UNODC Chief also highlighted the need to address the critical issue of foreign terrorist fighters, who pose a deadly threat to home nations, and transit and destination countries. Mr. Fedotov said UNODC was working hard to promote inter-regional cooperation and had launched a comprehensive initiative to address the growing nexus between terrorism and organized crime.

He noted UNODC was running anti-money laundering projects and had promoted an initiative establishing inter-regional networks designed to curb the damaging activities of transnational organized crime.

 

13 July 2015 - Exchange on Drug Policy and Research

On invitation by the European Parliament, Ms Angela Me, Chief of UNODC's Research and Trend Analysis Branch, spoke at a conference on "EU policies on the fight against drug trafficking and organised crime: assessing a new approach for soft drugs". She also met with representatives of the EU's Joint Research Centre (JRC) and of the Commission's Directorate General for Research and Innovation to exchange on possible cooperation in the research area.

 

10 July 2015 - Consultation on radicalisation in prisons

On invitation of the European Commission, Mr Hernan Longo, Programme Officer for Counter-Terrorism at UNODC's Regional Office for Southeast Asia and the Pacific, participated in a meeting on addressing violent extremist radicalisation to terrorism in prisons.

 

29 - 30 June 2015 - Maritime Security in the Gulf of Guinea

Mr Alan Cole, Head of the UNODC's Transnational Organised Crime Programme at the Regional Office for Eastern Africa and Head of the UNODC's Global Maritime Crime Programme, and Ms Siri Bjune, who is working on the Global Maritime Crime Programme, attended the conference "Maritime Security in the Gulf of Guinea - What has been done, what needs to be done ?" organised by DG DEVCO, the EEAS and the EU Institute for Security Studies. They also met EC counterparts to discuss cooperation on maritime security in various regions of Africa and the Indian Ocean.

 

25 - 26 June 2015 - Exchange on anti-corruption work

Mr Oliver Stolpe, Chief in the Corruption and Economic Branch of UNODC, came to Brussels to brief the EU counterparts in the EEAS, DG DEVCO and DG HOME about UNODC's anti-corruption work in support of the implementation of the UN Convention Against Corruption, which UNODC is the guardian of, and exchange on possibilities for enhancing cooperation.

 

17 June 2015 - EU-Central Asia Dialogue on drugs

Ms Signe Rotberga, UNODC Regional Advisor for Central Asia, was invited to the EU-Central Asia dialogue on drugs in the Council of the European Union, to inform about UNODC's support for development of public health-centered drugs policies in Central Asia and to present the new UNODC Regional Programme for Central Asia. She also attended a coordination meeting with the Central Asia Drug Action Programme (CADAP).

 

15 - 16 June 2015 - EU Consultation meetings on the Balkans

Ms Ekaterina Kolykhalova, officer in charge of UNODC's regional programme for the Western Balkans, participated in consultations on the EU progress reports for the Balkans organized by DG NEAR to review progress, successes and areas requiring attention under chapters 23 and 24 of the acquis communautaire which are of significant importance for the accession of the region into the EU. She also briefed the HONLEA Europe meeting and presented UNODC's work in the Western Balkans to the permanent Missions of the countries concerned in Brussels.

 

 

 

11 June 2015 - Workshop to discuss Countering Violent Extremism in the Horn of Africa

Mr Philip Divett from UNODC's Terrorism Prevention Branch (TPB) participated in a workshop held in Brussels under the auspices of the European Commission. The workshop, which was jointly organized by the Global Counter Terrorism Forum (GCTF) and the Counter Terrorism Monitoring Reporting and Support Mechanism (CT-Morse), brought together representatives of various agencies to discuss issues, challenges and opportunities associated with Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) and Counter Terrorist Financing (CTF) in the Horn of Africa.

 

11 - 12 June 2015 - Briefing on UNODC's anti-migrant smuggling work

Mr Ilias Chatzis, Chief of the UNODC's Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling Section was invited by the Crans Montana Forum to speak about migrant smuggling in the Mediterranean. Together with his colleague Ms Morgane Nicot, meetings were also held with DG DEVCO, DG NEAR and DG HOME, and he briefed a wide range of EU counterparts on UNODC's Strategy on Migrant Smuggling in the Mediterranean in a meeting convened at the UN House in Brussels.

 

 

5 June 2015 - Stakeholders meeting on ICMPD' DemandAt project

Ms Kristiina Kangaspunta was invited to attend the stakeholders meeting on ICMPD' DemandAt project and also discussed possible cooperation related to data collection on smuggling of migrants with the European Commission counterparts.

 

4 - 5 June 2015 - EUROLAT meeting at the European Parliament

UNODC Regional Representative for Central America and the Caribbean, Mr Amado de Andrès, was invited by the European Parliament to speak at the EUROLAT meeting about organised crime and violence in Latin America and Europe. He also met with EEAS and DG DEVCO counterparts to discuss activities in the region and with the group of Central American Ambassadors in Brussels.

 

 

 

4 June 2015 - Informal stakeholder consultation on human rights

On invitation by DG DEVCO, Ms Kati Rukola and Mr Ulrich Garms came for an informal stakeholders' consultation on the development of operational guidance to ensure that human rights are taken into consideration in the design and implementation of the measures in the fight against terrorism, organized crime including cybercrime as well as in addressing cybersecurity. They also met with EEAS and Council counterparts to discuss counter terrorism activities.

 

22 April 2015 - Exchange on the Western Balkans and Central Asia

Mr Alexandre Schmidt, Chief of the Regional Section covering Europe, West and Central Asia and Representative for South Eastern Europe, came to Brussels for exchanges with European Commission counterparts covering Central Asia and the Western Balkans.

 

14 - 15 April 2015 - European Parliament call for an EU Action Plan on Illegal Wildlife Trade

© Born Free Foundation Ms Sinead Brophy, Representative of the UNODC Global Programme for Combating Wildlife and Forest Crime took part in a conference at the European Parliament co-hosted by the Born Free Foundation and MEPs for Wildlife. The conference was part of a week-long series of events to highlight the scale of the illegal wildlife trade and urge the European Commission to develop an EU Action Plan. UNODC reported on the enforcement challenges faced in tackling wildlife and forest crime, provided recommendations for an action plan and took part in a speaker panel discussion. UNODC welcomes the European Parliament call for an EU Action Plan on Illegal Wildlife Trade and urges the European Commission to take notice and develop a comprehensive and balanced strategy to combat transnational organized wildlife and forest crime.

 

13 - 14 April 2015 - European Parliament hearing on EU security challenges from terrorism

© European Union, 2015 Ms Dolgor Solongo from UNODC's Terrorism Prevention Branch came to Brussels on invitation from the European Parliament to speak at a hearing of the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE) on "The fight against terrorism and the challenges for EU internal security". She also met with counterparts in the EEAS and the European Commission to discuss counter terrorism activities, in particular in West and Central Asia and the Western Balkans.

 

26 - 27 March 2015 - Cocaine Route Programme Steering Committee Meeting

For the Steering Committee Meeting of the Cocaine Route Programme which is funded by the EU under the Instrument contributing to Stability and Peace, UNODC colleagues came to Brussels to participate: the Manager of the AIRCOP project and her team, the UNODC Regional Representative in West and Central Africa Mr Pierre Lapaque, and the UNODC Representative in Peru and manager of the PRELAC project Mr Flavio Mirella attended. Mr Pierre Lapaque also attended the International Donor conference on Guinea Bissau held on 25 March 2015 in Brussels on the invitation of the EU, UNDP and the government of the country, while Mr Flavio Mirella held bilateral meetings with EU counterparts to discuss precursor control and the situation Latin America.

 

19-20 March 2015 - Training on FAFA for the Vienna based UN agencies

In view of the importance of the European Union's contributions of funds, for the 5th time an annual training was offered on how to build and sustain an operational partnership with the EU, on the Financial and Administrative Framework which governs this partnership, the FAFA, and the new contractual framework, Pagoda. The seminar was conducted by Mr Pierre Harzé, Deputy Director, United Nations/United Nations Development Programme Brussels Office, and Ms Anna Hysbergue, UN/UNDP Brussels Office. A large number of participants attended, coming from all UN agencies in Vienna, including UNODC, IAEA, UNIDO, CTBTO and OOSA.

 

16 - 17 March 2015 - Exchange on piracy and maritime crime

Mr Alan Cole, Head of UNODC's East Africa Transnational Organised Crime Programme and Head of UNODC's Global Maritime Crime Programme, came from Nairobi where he is based, to Brussels to participate in a meeting of the European Parliament's Subcommitte on Security and Defence for a briefing on the fight against piracy in Africa. He also met counterparts in the EEAS and DG DEVCO to discuss maritime crime in Eastern Africa, the Gulf of Guinea and in the Indian ocean, including in South Asia, and the response of the international community.

 

5 - 6 March 2015 - Exchange on Afghanistan and neighbouring countries

Mr Andrey Avetisyan, Regional Representative for Afghanistan and Neighbouring Countries and Special Adviser to the Special Representative of the Secretary-General on Counter-Narcotics, based in Kabul, briefed NATO on the narcotics situation in Afghanistan, and met with EEAS, DG DEVCO and European Parliament counterparts to discuss the support of the international community and the priority areas of UNODC's assistance to the country and neighbouring countries.

 

26 February 2015 - Exchange on Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling

Mr Ilias Chatzis, UNODC's Chief of the Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling Section, visited Brussels accompanied by Ms Euridice Marquez, working in the same section, to discuss with EU counterparts potential operational cooperation to address human trafficking and migrant smuggling on a global scale, together with other key agencies working on the issues.

 

9 - 10 February 2015 - EU Conference 'Towards an EU strategic approach to wildlife conservation in Africa'

Currently, the EU is developing a Strategy to preserve endangered wildlife in Africa, and organised a conference in Brussels in order to present the draft document ' Larger than Elephants' to stakeholders from governments, NGOs and international organisations. UNODC was represented by its Chief of the Sustainable Livelihoods Unit, Mr Jorge Rios, and his colleague Ms Volha Kuzmianok. Mr. Jorge Rios gave a presentation on the reinforcement of police and customs in addressing wildlife and forest crime. UNODC activities to fight wildlife and forest crime take place in the framework of the UNODC Global Programme for Combating Wildlife and Forest Crime, which was presented to EU counterparts on 2 October 2014 (see below).

 

6 February 2015 - UNODC's Director for Operations visits Brussels

UNODC's Director of the Division for Operations, Mr Aldo Lale-Demoz, came to Brussels to exchange with counterparts from the European Commission's DG DEVCO on areas for deeper strategic engagement, and about the joint portfolio in Nigeria. The joint projects in Nigeria focus support on anti-corruption, the fight against trafficking in persons and the smuggling of migrants, justice reform and the fight against drugs & organised crime.

 

26 - 27 January 2015 - Exchange on the Middle East and Northern Africa

UNODC's Regional Representative for the Middle East and Northern Africa (MENA), Mr Masood Karimipour, together with Mr Julien Garsany from the same office, came from Cairo to Brussels to talk to various EU counterparts about the situation in the region in relation to UNODC's mandate areas. They exchanged with EU officials working for the EEAS, DG DEVCO, DG HOME, DG NEAR and the Council Secretariat General. Mr. Masood Karimipour also spoke to the Southern Neighbourhood Working Group of the European Parliament.

 

20 January 2015 - EU briefing on the 13th United Nations Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice in Doha (Qatar)

On invitation of the EEAS, the Qatari National Organising Committee (NOC) delegation, accompanied by Mr Dimitri Vlassis, Chief of UNODC's Corruption and Economic Crime Branch and Substantive Coordinator of the 13th UN Congress on Crime Prevention & Criminal Justice, and his colleague Ms Gemma Norman, came to Brussels to brief EU counterparts on the congress. The congress takes place from 12-19 April 2015, hosted by the government of Qatar and bringing together crime prevention and criminal justice reform experts from all over the world.

 

 

3 January 2015 - UNODC works on alternative development in Myanmar with the support of the EU

Following a sharp decline in poppy cultivation in Myanmar about ten years ago, the production is again on the rise. Poppy are the source for producing opium and heroin. UNODC - with the financial support of the EU - is working in Myanmar to curb this alarming trend, by implementing alternative development projects, offering poppy cultivating farmers alternatives for generating a licit income. The New York Times has reported on UNODC's activities in Myanmar. You can find a video and an article here.

 

1 January 2015 - European Year for Development launched

The EU has decided that 2015 will be the European Year for Development. It is the first ever European Year to deal with the European Union's external action and Europe's role in the world and will be officially launched in Riga on 9 January. The main goal is to explain to European citizens how EU development aid works and to demonstrate that it makes a real and lasting difference. Each month will be dedicated to a specific topic within development cooperation. UNODC will be one of the implementing partners of the EU for this European Year for Development. You can find UNODC's webpage within the EYD2015 website here.

 

 

3 - 4 December 2014 - UNODC attends 6th International Conference of the International Juvenile Justice Observatory in Brussels

On 3 and 4 December, Ms Alexandra Martins and Mr Mario Hemmerling, from UNODC's Justice Section attended the 6th International Conference of the International Juvenile Justice Observatory (IJJO), held in Brussels. This year's topic of the IJJO Conference was 'Making deprivation of children's liberty a last resort'. Ms. Alexandra Martins spoke during a plenary session on 'Justice for Children in the framework of the Children's Rights Convention anniversary: progress and challenges for the next 25 years', discussing strategies for preventing and responding to violence against children in contact with the justice system. Mr. Mario Hemmerling moderated a workshop on 'Access to justice: ensuring restorative measures are considered at the pretrial stage'. They also took met with EU officials to discuss issues related to juvenile justice. You can find more information about IJJO's 6th International Conference here.

 

2 December 2014 - UNODC presents its Global report on Human Trafficking in the European Parliament

Ms Kristiina Kangaspunta, Chief of the Global Report on Trafficking in Persons Unit at UNODC, came to Brussels to present the 2nd global report on trafficking in persons released by UNODC. This was done at a joint committee meeting at the European Parliament, grouping the LIBE Committee (Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs) and the FEMM Committee (Women's rights and Equal opportunities). She presented the global report after the EU's Anti-Trafficking Coordinator, Ms Myria Vassiliadou, presented an EU report on trafficking in persons. You can find the Global report on Trafficking in Persons here. After her presentation in the joint committee meeting, Ms. Kangaspunta was interviewed by the New Tang Dynasty Television for their documentary on organ trafficking in China.

 

1 - 2 December 2014 - 10th Annual EU-UNODC Senior Officials Meeting and 3rd Operational Exchange Meeting held in Vienna 

The 10th Annual Senior Officials Meeting between UNODC and the EU and the 3rd Operational Exchange meeting took place in Vienna. The EU delegation was headed by Ms Mara Marinaki, Managing Director at the EEAS while Mr Jean-Luc Lemahieu, Director of the Division for Policy Analysis and Public Affairs, was leading UNODC's delegation. Mr Jesper Pedersen, Head of Unit at the European Commission's DG DEVCO, chaired the operational exchange meeting for the EU. The EU Ambassador to the International Organisations in Vienna, Ms Györgyi Martin Zanathy, also attended part of the meeting. Several issues of common interest were discussed at strategic and operational level, including the post-2015 Development Framework, illicit trafficking, drug policies, terrorism and corruption.

 

14 November 2014 - UNODC attends COTER meeting

Mr Trevor Rajah, UNODC's Chief of the Terrorism Prevention Branch, presented an update on UNODC's counter-terrorism activities to the Working Party on Terrorism (International Aspects) of the Council of the European Union (COTER). Mr. Trevor Rajah, along with Ms Elena Rigacci Hay, also met with the EEAS to exchange on counter-terrorism initiatives.

 

 

 

10 - 14 November 2014 - First Andean Workshop in Training of Trainers on Drug Abuse Treatment - TREATNET

The Colombian Ministry of Justice, the European Union, the EU funded Project for the Support to the Reduction of Illicit Drugs Demand in the Andean Community (PREDEM) and UNODC carried out the First Andean Workshop for Training of Trainers on Drug Abuse Treatment (TREATNET), aiming at strengthening the technical and methodological knowledge in order to deal with the problem of drug abuse affecting the Andean region.

 

12 November 2014 - Fundar gets a PREDEM grant

The EU Delegation in Peru and UNODC's office for Peru and Colombia paid a visit to the Colombian NGO Fundar. This NGO was given a grant through the EU funded PREDEM project. Fundar develops a pilot project to create a treatment centre of low threshold and damage reduction for users of heroine and other psychoactive substances.

 

11 November 2014 - 2nd meeting of the Advisory Commitee of PREDEM in Colombia

On 11 November, the second meeting of the Advisory Committee of the EU funded project PREDEM took place in Bogota, Colombia. Representatives from the EU Delegation in Peru, UNODC's Colombia Representative and national counterparts were present at the meeting. PREDEM is a project which aims at Drugs Demand Reduction in the Andean countries.

 

6 - 7 November 2014 - Exchange on Central Asia and South Eastern Europe

UNODC's regional representative for Eastern Europe, West and Central Asia, Mr Alexandre Schmidt, came to Brussels. He was joined by Ms Ashita Mittal, UNODC's representative for Central Asia, and Ms Aisser Al-Hafedh, desk officer for Eastern Europe. They briefed the Dublin Group meeting at the Council on developments in Afghanistan with regards to narcotics. Also, meetings with EU officials of the EEAS, DG DEVCO and DG NEAR were held to exchange on the region covered by the team. Ms. Ashita Mittal also met with the Ambassador of Uzbekistan.

 

4 November 2014 - Briefing on a new orientation and perspectives in the global drug policy

Dr. Gilberto Gerra, UNODC's Chief of the Drug Prevention and Health Branch, came to Brussels to provide a talk on a new orientation and perspectives in drug policies in the UN house. The meeting was attended by representatives from EU Member States, the European Parliament, the European External Action Service, and the Commission. Together with Ms Jo Dedeyne, UNODC's Chief of the Secretariat to the Governing Bodies Section, he also took part in a meeting of the Horizontal Working Party on Drugs at the Council of the European Union. They informed EU Member States representatives about developments and multilateral discussions concerning the global drug policy.

 

29 October 2014 - Presentation of the UNODC - UNICEF Joint Programme on Justice for Children

Ms. Valérie Lebaux, Chief of UNODC's Justice Section, and Mr. Philipp Meissner, working on prison reform and alternative sentencing in Ms. Lebaux' unit, came to Brussels after signing and MoU with the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague on building the capacity of States to enforce, in accordance with international standards on the treatment of prisoners, sentences of imprisonment pronounced by the Court. Also, they presented UNODC's and UNICEF's joint programme on Justice for Children in the UN house. The meeting was attended by staff from DG DEVCO, DG Justice and the EEAS. For more information on UNODC-UNICEF cooperation on Justice for Children, see link.

 

24 October 2014 - UN Day

24 October is UN Day. On this occasion the UN team in Brussels, including UNODC, gathered to celebrate the day on Brussels Grand Place on Sunday 26 October. All participating agencies presented themselves to the public and collectively promoted the work of the UN. To see the video of this year's UN Day celebration, produced by UNRIC, click here.

 

20 - 22 October 2014 - Second International Conference on Engaging Partners for Capacity-Building: United Nations' Collaboration with Counter-Terrorism Centres in Brussels

Mr Trevor Rajah, Chief of UNODC's Terrorism Prevention Branch and his colleague Ms Elena Rigacci Hay came to Brussels to attend the UN-EU High Level Counter-Terrorism Political Dialogue and the Second International Conference on Engaging Partners for Capacity-Building: United Nations' Collaboration with Counter-Terrorism Centres, organised by the United Nations Counter-Terrorism Centre and co-hosted by the EU.

 

15 - 17 October 2014 - First International Meeting on Drug Synthesis, Emerging Substances and their Precursors held in Santa Marta, Colombia

From 15 to 17 October, the First International Meeting on Drug Synthesis, Emerging Substances and their Precursors took place in Santa Marta, Colombia. This event, which was an important space for transnational dialogue, was organised by UNODC in partnership with the Colombian Ministry of Justice and the PRELAC project. This project works on the prevention of the diversion of drugs precursors in the Latin American and Caribbean region and is funded by the EU. About 80 attendees and 18 speakers, national and international, participated in the meeting which discussed the ability of institutions to deal with the production and trafficking of new drugs and their precursors, as well as with forensic analysis that the authorities must make.

 

13 - 15 October 2014 - Exchange on UNODC's Global Container Control Programme

Mr Ketil Ottersen, UNODC's Coordinator of the Global Container Control Programme (CCP), came to Brussels to meet counterparts of the World Customs Organisation, as the CCP is a joint UNODC-WCO programme. He also met EU officials at the EEAS, DG DEVCO and DG Enlargement. He was accompanied by members of his team in Vienna, Ms Ricarda Amberg and Mr Joshymon Ernakeril.

 

9 October 2014 - European Parliament event on Tackling money laundering and tax heavens in Europe

UNODC's Brussels Representative, Ms Martina Hanke, was invited to participate in the international seminar on Anti-Money Laundering at the European Parliament. She presented UNODC's Global Programme against Money-Laundering, Proceeds of Crime and the Financing of Terrorism. The Seminar was organised by ALDA, the European Association for Local Democracy, and was chaired by MEP Ms. Eleonora Forenza. Other organisations speaking at the Seminar were the European Commission's DG MARKT, Transparency International, LIBERA and the UK Digital Currency Association.

 

8 October 2014 - European Parliament event on Wildlife Trafficking

The Eurogroup for animals and Act4Wildlife organised a seminar in the European Parliament on the increase in the illegal trade in wildlife and developing a comprehensive framework to curb it. UNODC was invited to speak at the event. Mr Jorge Rios presented UNODC's Global Programme for Combatting Wildlife and Forest Crime. The event was chaired by MEP Mr Gerben-Jan Gerbrandy, who is actively supporting work on the topic in the EP. Other organisations speaking were the European Commission, Stichting Aap, the Environment Investigation Agency and others.

 

2 - 3 October 2014 - Exchange on Peru, Ecuador and precursor control in Latin America 

Mr Flavio Mirella, UNODC's regional representative for Peru and Ecuador, was in Brussels to attend the Steering Committee Meeting of the Cocaine Route Programme (CORMS), of which PRELAC, an EU funded project on precursor control in Latin America, managed by the UNODC office in Peru, forms part. He also met with EU officials to talk about developments in Peru and Ecuador and the wider region. For information about PRELAC click here.

 

2 October 2014 - Presentation of UNODC's Global Programme for Combating Wildlife and Forest Crime

Mr Jorge Rios, UNODC's Chief of the Sustainable Livelihoods Unit, together with his colleague Ms Volha Kuzmianok, came to Brussels to present the programme to various stakeholders from the EU, including the EEAS, DG ENV, DG HOME, DG JUST and DG DEVCO. Participants agreed that this crime needs to receive more attention and urgent action needs to be taken by the international community to fight it effectively. For more information on UNODC's Global Programme for Combating Wildlife and Forest Crime, see here.

 

25 September 2014 - CINE ONU: the Captain and his Pirate

UNODC has organised, with the support of UNRIC, a CINE ONU event at the Goethe Institute in Brussels on piracy. The movie 'The Captain and his Pirate' was displayed to an audience of about 400 people.   Mr Alan Cole, Head of UNODC's Global Maritime Crime Programme, spoke at the discussion following the movie screening, along with  Mr Markus Houben, from the EU and Mr. Andy Wolff, the director of the movie. Before the CINE ONU event, Mr Alan Cole met with EU officials to exchange on the maritime security situation in East Africa and the Indian Ocean. He was accompanied by   Ms Siri Bjune, also working for UNODC, who spoke with EU officials about piracy in the Gulf of Guinea. For more information on CINE ONU events, see UNRIC's website. You can also find pictures of the event   here

 

18 - 19 September 2014 - Exchange on Central America and the Caribbean 

Mr Augusto Lavieri  from the UNODC regional office in Panama came to Brussels for meetings with EEAS and DG DEVCO staff to discuss drugs and crime related developments in Central America and the Caribbean. He also presented UNODC activities in the region and discussed possibilities for cooperation with the EU. 

 

31 July 2014 - The Brussels Liaison Office supports the Blue Heart Campaign

Photo credit UNODC BrusselsUNODC's Brussels Liaison Office supports the   Blue Heart campaign against human trafficking. This campaign aims at raising public awareness about human trafficking mobilising support to fighting the crime. The blue heart represents the despair of victims of human trafficking and reminds us of the cruelty of traffickers. The blue colour indicates the UN's commitment to fight this crime.

 

 

 

7 July 2014 - Presentation of an EU funded survey on corruption in the Western Balkans

Mr Enrico Bisogno, UNODC's team leader on Crime Statistics, visited Brussels on 7 July 2014 to give a presentation on the trafficking of drugs through the Western Balkans towards Europe. He also talked about corruption as an enabler for this criminal activity and about other types of crime in the region.  Mr Lawrence Meredith, Acting Director for Policy and Coordination of the European Commission's DG Enlargement co-chaired the meeting. The presentation was based on this   report.  

 

20 - 21 May 2014 - High Level Workshop: Combating transnational organised crime at sea

The EU and INTERPOL organised a high level workshop on maritime crime. The goal was to better promote maritime governance and security, and enforce links between law enforcement and financial intelligence services. Mr Maciej Popowski, one of the Deputy Executive Secretary Generals of the EEAS was one of the speakers, as well as Mr Marcus Cornaro, Deputy Director-General at DG DEVCO and INTERPOL President Ms Mireille Ballestrazzi. A joint report on piracy done by the World Bank, INTERPOL and UNODC was presented. Speaking on behalf of UNODC was  Mr Robert MacLaughlin, counter-piracy expert, and  Mr Oleksiy Feshchenko, coordinator of UNODC's Global Programme against Money-Laundering, Proceeds of Crime and the Financing of Terrorism (GPML).

  

3 December 2013 - The European Parliament celebrates the 10 th anniversary of the UN Convention against Corruption

MEP Mr Dennis De Jong hosted an event in the European Parliament to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the UNCAC. Mr  Dimitri Vlassis, Chief of UNODC's Corruption and Economic Crime Branch, participated in the panel discussion on corruption in Europe. Also a representative from the European Commission, a representative from the Greek Permanent Representation and the Director of the Brussels Office of Transparency International were also on the panel, which was moderated by Mr Nikolaj Nielsen of the EU Observer. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

22 - 23 October 2013 - 9th Annual EU-UNODC Senior Officials Meeting in Brussels 

Photo credit UNODC BrusselsThe EU-UNODC Senior Officials Meeting brought together officials from UNODC and DG DEVCO on Tuesday for an opertionally focussed exchange and from UNODC and the EEAS on Wednesday for a policy exchange meeting. A number of topics and regions of common interest were discussed, including organised crime, corruption, terrorism and drug policy. The delegation of the EEAS was headed by Ms Mara Marinaki, Managing Director, while Mr Sandeep Chawla, Deputy Executive Director, headed UNODC's delegation. The Senior Officials Meeting is an important mechanism for the EU and UNODC to consider ways to better coordinate their efforts in order to increase synergies, and benefit from each other's comparative advantages in the areas of mutual interest. The participants re-affirmed the value of the cooperation between the EU and UNODC. 

 

20 October 2013 - UN Day 2013

Photo credit UNODC brusselsThe Brussels team participated in this year's UN Day celebration on the Grand Place in Brussels. The UN Day marks the anniversary of the entry into force of the UN charter in 1945 and is celebrated on 24 October. On that occasion the UN team sets up information booths and organises fun events on the Grand Place to inform the public about the UN and promote its values.