UNODC provides technical assistance to terrorism prevention in Mali

22-11-2021  Bamako. UNODC held a national workshop “on information-sharing between national and regional agencies in charge of countering terrorism and transnational crimes in the Liptako-Gourma region" in Bamako. Funded by the Kingdom of Denmark, the workshop took place from 13 to 15 October 2021. It brought together 13 representatives from the Special Brigade for Counter-Terrorism Investigations, gendarmerie and judicial police services, the National Police Intelligence Directorate, the Border Police Directorate, as well as and the Danish Sahel Regional Peace and Stabilization Program.

Held under the aegis of the Sahel Programme, this workshop is part of a series of activities organized by UNODC in Mali, Niger and Burkina Faso on information-sharing and police-justice cooperation in countering terrorism in the Liptako Gourma region.

The discussions that took place during the workshop highlighted key challenges that Mali faces in preventing and countering terrorism, includingchallenges in maintaining an up-to-date database of suspected terrorists in Mali, the progress needed to enhance inter-agency coordination(especially between justice actors and investigators) and the challenges posed by the detection of movement of terrorist suspects and foreign fighters benefitting from porous borders.

According to Dr. Amado Philip de Andrès, Regional Representative of UNODC for West and Central Africa, "strengthening border security in the Liptako-Gourma region is both one of the greatest challenges and one of the priorities in order to allow the border populations to live in greater security”.

The exchanges also highlighted several areas of technical assistance that UNODC could provide support to. In particular, participants expressed an interest in the organization of specialized trainings in crime scene management and interrogation techniques in the context of counter terrorism.

The UNODC delegation also met with the head of the Specialized Counter-Terrorism Investigation Brigade and with the Director of Judicial Affairs and Seal of Mali. The activities in Mali were part of UNODC’s continued support to strengthening Mali’s capacities in preventing and countering terrorism.