India has proposed to Interpol that the General Assembly of the organization be held in New Delhi in 2022 as part of the nation’s 75th Independence Day celebrations. What is the Interpol General Assembly?
The Interpol The International Criminal Police Organisation, or Interpol, is a 194-member intergovernmental organisation headquartered in Lyon, France. It was formed in 1923 as the International Criminal Police Commission, and started calling itself Interpol in 1956. India joined the organisation in 1949, and is one of its oldest members. Interpol aims to “help police in all… (its member countries) to work together to make the world a safer place”, according to its website. It enables police forces from different countries to share and access data on crimes and criminals, and offers a “range of technical and operational support”. Interpol’s declared global policing goals include countering terrorism, promoting border integrity worldwide, protection of vulnerable communities, providing a secure cyberspace for people and businesses, curbing illicit markets, supporting environment security, and promoting global integrity.
The General Assembly is Interpol’s supreme governing body, and comprises representatives from all its member countries. The General Assembly meets annually for a session lasting approximately four days, to vote on activities and policy. Each country is represented by one or more delegates at the Assembly, who are typically chiefs of law enforcement agencies. The General Assembly also elects the members of the Interpol Executive Committee, the governing body which “provides guidance and direction in between sessions of the Assembly”. Major trends in crime and security threats facing the world are also discussed.
The General Assembly’s decisions take the form of Resolutions. Each member country has one vote. Decisions are made either by a simple or a two-thirds majority, depending on the subject matter. General Assembly Resolutions are public documents. Interpol recognises that “as the largest global gathering of senior law enforcement officials, the General Assembly also provides an important opportunity for countries to network and share experiences”.
The Interpol’s 88th General Assembly will assemble in Santiago, Chile, later this year. The 2018 (87th), 2017 (86th), 2016 (85th), and 2015 (84th) General Assemblies met in Dubai, UAE, Beijing, China, Bali, Indonesia, and Kigali, Rwanda, respectively. Kim Jong Yang of South Korea was elected president of Interpol for a two-year term until 2020 by the General Assembly in Dubai. The Secretary General of Interpol since 2014 has been Jürgen Stock of Germany. He is the organisation’s senior full-time official who oversees the day-to-day running of the Interpol General Secretariat. Stock met Home Minister Amit Shah in New Delhi last week.