Creation of ICCWC heralds new era in wildlife crime detection

Secretary-General of CITES, John Scanlon (left) and INTERPOL Secretary General, Ronald K. Noble, during discussions leading up to the formation of ICCWC. UK, May 2011— At a CAWT Partners meeting last month the recent formation of the International Consortium on Combating Wildlife Crime  (ICCWC) was welcomed; and partners agreed to seek opportunities to assist with its operations.

The creation of ICCWC is an unprecedented attempt to ‘mainstream’ the fight against wildlife crime. It is a collaborative effort between five inter-governmental organizations to bring coordinated support to the national wildlife law enforcement agencies and to the sub-regional and regional networks that, on a daily basis, act in defence of natural resources.

The Consortium comprises the Secretariat of CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora), INTERPOL, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), the World Bank and the World Customs Organization (WCO). The CITES Secretariat chairs the consortium.

Its mission is to usher in a new era where perpetrators of serious wildlife crimes will face a formidable and coordinated response against their actions; rather than the present situation where the risk of detection and punishment is too low.

ICCWC has stated it will mainly work with the wildlife law enforcement community, whose frontline officers are those who eventually bring criminals engaged in wildlife crime to justice.

To achieve this, ICCWC will seek to support development of law enforcement that builds on socially and environmentally sustainable natural resource policies, taking into consideration the need to provide livelihood support to poor and marginalized rural communities.

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