UNODC strengthens the capacity of law-enforcement agencies in Uzbekistan on detecting and collecting crime related data on open sources

On 9-13 May, UNODC component “Countering trafficking of Afghan narcotics and synthetic drugs in Uzbekistan through establishment of Interagency Mobile Teams (IMT)” held an advanced training "On collecting data from open sources and reporting skills" on the basis of the Turkish International Academy for Combating Drugs and Organized Crime (TADOC) for 20 mid and high-level law enforcement officers from Uzbekistan involved in the IMT project, who work in analytical and operational departments of law enforcement agencies.

During the opening session, Mr. Serdar Tug, Deputy Head of TADOC, welcomed all participants of the training and briefed about the structure of TADOC and joint UNODC-TADOC initiatives completed to date In his speech Mr. Tug stressed that since the beginning of 2000s TADOC, jointly with the UNODC ROCA, organized 59 trainings, where 480 law enforcement officers from Uzbekistan participated.

Ms. Nargiza Abdukadirova, UNODC National Programme Coordinator, in her turn thanked the management and the team of TADOC for a very warm welcoming. She highlighted the main achievements of the UNODC component on “Countering trafficking of Afghan narcotics and synthetic drugs in Uzbekistan through establishment of Interagency Mobile Teams” to date. That includes establishment and operationalization of seven (7) more IMT offices in 2020 addition to six (6) established in 2018; amendment of the Standard Operating Procedures for Interagency Mobile Teams and the Operations Coordination Team considering the inclusion of the Department on Combating Economic Crimes under the General Prosecutors Office into the second phase of the project; procurement and delivery of vehicles and strategic equipment for IMT offices and series of trainings conducted for the law-enforcement agencies of Uzbekistan. 

The training program was designed to equip the law enforcement officers with necessary knowledge, techniques, and skills to analyze the open source and social media related data and get the necessary information through the publicly available content that can support their criminal investigations. The training was led by the experienced TADOC experts Yasin Çomak and Sait Çakmak. The participants went through the practical sessions as well. At the end of this training, the participants learned: types of open sources; methods of collecting data through the open source; identifying of the owners of websites or accounts that constitute a crime; effective use of search engines of the websites that constitute anti-smuggling and organized crime factors, and others.

On the last day of the training session, Mr. Erdem Ozler, Director of TADOC underlined the importance of close cooperation with UNODC as a partner organization, as well as with the law enforcement agencies in Uzbekistan, with whom TADOC had also developed bilateral partnership relations. He thanked all participants for their active engagement during the training and said that such interactions were very useful for both sides as TADOC experts also learned a lot from their Uzbek colleagues during the week. Mr. Ozler encouraged to strengthen those partnership ties and expressed hopes for close cooperation in the future.

One of the participants of the training from MOI highlighted the importance of the knowledge and skills gained during the training in their operative and search investigations. According to him such knowledge and skills, both theoretical and practical, will increase the effectiveness and efficiency of the work of law enforcement agencies in fighting against drugs trafficking and groups of organized crime.  

All 20 participants of the training were awarded with certificates on successful completion of the training.

“Countering trafficking of Afghan narcotics and synthetic drugs in Uzbekistan through establishment of Interagency Mobile Teams” project activities resulted in further strengthening of counter-narcotics capacities of the law enforcement agencies of Uzbekistan in the face of the evolving drug situation as evidenced by the illicit drug seizures in the country.

The aim of the Interagency Mobile Teams (IMT) project is to ensure that the UNODC’s support remains relevant and is adaptable to future challenges and risks. This initiative introduces a holistic approach to the provision of assistance by ensuring that UNODC’s support continue to be delivered in a consultative and coordinated environment.

The component is implemented within the Sub-programme 1 “Countering transnational organized crime, illicit drug trafficking and preventing terrorism” of the UNODC Programme for Central Asia 2022-2025 and is funded by Government of Japan.