EU-UNODC Partnership Report

- 10 years of working together -



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.





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 - Exchanges on Counter Terrorism 

Photo credit UNODC BrusselsMs 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 ! 

UN DAY 71 anniversaryOn 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

UN DAY @ EP 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 ViennaIn 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

AIRCOP 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

Yury Fedotov at Afghanistan ConferenceOn 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

Kristiina KangaspuntaMs 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

Yatta Dakowah and Bob VandenbergheMr 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

GLO.ACTUNODC 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

For 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

On 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.

The 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

UNODC 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).





Read our past stories here.