Panel Discussions - Sunday, December 01, 2013
How to Cope With Organized Crime
Organized crime has evolved dramatically over the past decades, and there are insufficient tools and training to enable members of peace operations to properly assess and respond to these threats. To address this shortcoming, IPI developed and implemented a two-week pilot course—the first of its kind—on how to cope with organized crime as a spoiler for lasting peace.
Held December 1-12th at the Peace Castle in Stadtschlaining, Austria, the event attracted twenty participants from seventeen different countries, including operations planning experts, law-enforcement specialists, and non-governmental practitioners, who took part in this specialized training course, which was run as part of IPI’s Peace without Crime project (funded by Norway and Switzerland) together with the Austrian Studies Centre for Peace and Conflict Resolution (ASPR).
Based on lessons learned from IPI’s report entitled “The Elephant in the Room: How Can Peace Operations Deal with Organized Crime?” (2013), as well as a methodology outlined in the "Spotting the Spoilers” (2012) guide to carrying out organized crime threat assessments in fragile states, the participants in the training course acquired an understanding of the political economy in which illicit markets flourish; the impact of organized crime; insights into the motivation and behavior of spoilers; as well as guidance on how to reduce the risks posed by organized crime.
Conceptually, the training program aimed at providing a holistic perspective to the problem at hand–combining a variety of approaches ranging from law-enforcement to development, which the participants could subsequently apply in a realistic simulation exercise. It also highlighted practical and political dilemmas faced by practitioners dealing with this challenge in the field. For example, when and how should one tackle the problem? Should one mediate with spoilers involved in illicit activities? And what approaches can be taken when threat assessments reveal that senior officials are complicit in criminal activities?
High-ranking professionals from a variety of intelligence and law-enforcement agencies, international organizations such as the United Nations, the European Union, and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), as well as independent analysts and experts introduced the course participants to the challenges and methods of organized crime assessments, financial intelligence and existing multilateral approaches, and specific case studies, such as Libya and Mali. They also offered practical advice, particularly on carrying out threat assessments. During a visit to Vienna, the group received briefings at the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the OSCE.
“Since organized crime is a threat in almost every theater where there are peace operations, we hope that this course will inspire national peace training centers as well as regional and international organizations to factor organized crime into their training program,” said Walter Kemp, IPI’s Director for Europe and Central Asia.
The Global Observatory
For More Effective Sanctions, Time to Examine Question of Termination
The termination process is not often examined when creating sanctions, but it is key to their effectiveness.
Key Global Events to Watch in April
A list of key upcoming meetings and events with implications for global affairs.
2014 Top 10 Issues to Watch in Peace & Security: The Global Arena
A list of ten key issues to watch that are likely to impact international peace and security in 2014, compiled by IPI's Francesco Mancini.
The Global Observatory, produced by IPI, provides timely analysis on peace and security issues, interviews with leading policymakers, interactive maps, and more.
April 05, 2014
IPI Opens Middle East Regional Office
International Peace Institute President Terje Rød-Larsen inaugurated IPI’s new Middle East Regional Office with a recognition of the area’s critical importance to the world and the rapid political changes underway in the countries of the region, and he asserted that IPI has an “important role” to play there.
April 04, 2014
Malone: In Development, UN Is “Idea Incubator”
With the timeline for the Millennium Development Goals ticking down, the United Nations says its machinery is cranking at full speed to facilitate and produce the framework for a post-2015 development agenda before the General Assembly session in September. Whether that’s true or not, fortunately, the UN is an apt and important “idea incubator” for international development, contended Dr. David Malone, Rector of the United Nations University (UNU), on April 4th.
April 03, 2014
In Horn of Africa, Links Between Disaster, Conflict, and Displacement
What are the links between climate change, conflict, and the displacement of people? A panel of experts discussed this nexus and its implications in the Horn of Africa at the International Peace Institute on April 3rd in an event cosponsored by the Nansen Initiative.