Saif bin Zayed: The UAE will fight all types of crime with unrelenting determination.
“We will adamantly confront dangers that undermine security and world peace”
A 7-nation international security alliance was recently announced in Abu Dhabi to serve as a working group to confront organized and transnational crime. The announcement was made in the presence of Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior and the interior ministers and representatives of six Arab and world countries. The general secretariat of the newly formed alliance, which comprises Italy, Spain, Senegal, Kingdom of Bahrain, Kingdom of Morocco, as well as the founding countries, UAE and France, will be headquartered in Abu Dhabi.
The new Alliance aims to encourage joint action to confront the different types of organized and transnational crime, develop prevention methods, and achieve sustainable security and stability for member countries in their effort to reinforce the security and advancement of their people. The alliance also enhances opportunities for cooperation among these countries in police and security areas, while leveraging experiences and sharing of information and expertise to achieve security and world peace.
Unlike most other alliances, this international working group would serve as a forum for sharing knowledge and expertise and disseminating best practices and specialized training principles and methods in all areas related to policing and security. The legal nature of this alliance would provide it with the flexibility to respond to and confront the current challenges and issues that face law enforcement.
Lt. General H.H Sheikh Saif conveyed to the attendees the greetings of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE; His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashed Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai; and His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Deputy Supreme Commander of The UAE Armed Forces.
In his address on the occasion, H.H Sheikh Saif said: “The UAE is working with unrelenting determination to confront all types of crime, locally, regionally and internationally, based on the firm belief of its wise leadership that security is a shared responsibility.” He noted that the emerging security challenges require enhanced international cooperation, and improved response readiness, as well as concerted efforts to ensure a proactive approach to security and police work, in a bid to eradicate crime and destroy the forces of evil.
Adding further, His Highness said: “Crime primarily targets innocent people, and disrupts the security of nations and communities to hinder their progress, growth and prosperity. As we ink this international Alliance, we witness the birth of a joint understating bringing together sisterly and friendly countries with similar challenges. This Alliance reflects our sincere intention and determination to fight these risks that threaten peace and world security”.
“We will work tirelessly to maintain a strong battle stance to combat crime and defeat the forces of evil, regardless of their reach or strength. We will work hand in hand to reinforce this alliance and to attain its noble goals as well as the aspirations of its Member Countries to ensure that our alliance becomes an international security power that attracts all those who covet more security and stability,” H.H Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior continued.
The announcement was attended by the Bahraini Minister of Interior, Lt. General Staff Sheikh Rashid bin Abdullah Al Khalifa; H.E Abdoulaye Daouda Diallo, Minister of the Interior and Public Security of Senegal; Prefect Filippo Dispenza, Brigadier General of the Italian National Police representing the Italian Ministry of Interior, Jean-Claude Gwaya, Undersecretary of the French Ministry of Interior; Eugenio Salarich, Spain’s Ambassador to the UAE, representing the Spanish Ministry of Interior; and Noureddine Boutayeb, Secretary-General of the Ministry of Interior, Morocco.
Also attending were Brigadier Hamad Ajlan Al Amimi, Director General of the Federal Criminal Police, at the Ministry of Interior; Brigadier Mohammed bin Dalmouj Al Dhaheri, Director General of Strategy and Performance Development at the Ministry of Interior; and from the Kingdom of Bahrain, Major General Engineer Riyadh Eid Abdullah, Director General of the Ministry of Interior; and Brigadier Hamad bin Mohammed Al Khalifa, Assistant Director of General Security for Operations and Training. From Senegal, Pierre Mendy, Director of National Land Control and Colonel Amadou Lamine Dieng, Head of Anti-terrorism Unit; and from France, Patrice Valais, Head of the North Africa and Middle East Office; and from Italy, Daniela Baglezi, Director of International Relations and Claudio Julizarano Head of the Anti International Terrorism, at the Central Directorate for Preventive Police; along with a number of Ministry of Interior’s officers and officials from the seven countries.
The attendees listened to a video address by Bruno Le Roux, the French Minister of the Interior, by which he gave an overview of the Alliance, and the reasons behind it. The Minister stressed his country’s determination to deepen relations to enhance the security and safety of international communities.
The UAE, represented by the Ministry of Interior, had hosted a coordination meeting earlier this year to discuss preparations for establishing the Alliance, while Member countries pursued mutual communication to put the final touches to the International Alliance for Homeland Security.
The Alliance focuses on strengthening the security and safety of Member States in accordance with their interests, unifying security and policing concepts, as well as enhancing joint coordination and sharing of mutual expertise in security and crime issues, in addition to exchanging views and advice between these countries on the fight against organized and transnational crime and relevant prevention measures, management and control of borders and ports, while ensuring that every State acts within the scope of its local legislations and laws.
Moreover, the Ministers of Interior members of the Alliance shall seek the development of institutional work and specialized operations through cooperation in the exchange of information and practical methodologies, sharing of successful experiences and practices, specialized training, and offering the best practices that are implemented in police and security work to be circulated between Member Countries to ensure optimal benefit.
The Alliance was established in an effort to combat organized, transnational and extremist crimes and to reinforce joint action against crime. It stems out of the firm belief of the Alliance’s members countries in the importance of concerted effort to confront security threats and police challenges regardless of
where they arise, and that addressing such international issues is a shared responsibility between them, as well as the need to join hands to combat challenges effectively on national, regional and international levels, to prevent and combat transnational and organized crime, and extremism and hate crimes.
In the coming weeks, the Alliance’s General Secretariat, which will be based in Abu Dhabi, will provide an overview of the Alliance’s operating model, accession terms, organizational structure and work mechanism of sub-work teams. Member countries shall hold joint regular meetings in the host country or any of the Member Countries by agreement on this matter, in order to discuss programs, exchange information and practical methodologies, share successful experiences and practices and specialized training.
The first panel discussion, which was attended by representatives and officials from the Alliance’s Member countries, focused on the “Criminal exploitation via social media.” Security experts from the International Working Group presented their countries’ experience in combating crimes committed via social media. Colonel Abdul Aziz Al Ahmed, Head of the Security Information Department at the UAE Ministry of Interior, submitted a paper on how to ensure the optimum use of social media, while Colonel Bassam Al Maraj, General Director of Anti–corruption and Economic and Electronic Security from Bahrain y also presented a paper about his country’s experience in this area. His Excellency Abdoulaye Daouda Diallo, Minister of the Interior and Public Security for the Republic of Senegal reviewed in his paper his country’s experience in combating extremist crimes and uses of social media, while Italy’s Prefect Filippo Dispenza, Brigadier General of the Italian National Police representing the Italian Ministry of Interior gave in his paper an overview of Italy’s experience in the fight against crime via social media. The participants suggested a number of solutions, which were discussed and relevant views were exchanged during the sessions dedicated for experts and specialists working in security and police sectors.
Ministers of Interior representing Member Countries communicated and coordinated their efforts, and exchanged mutual visits, most notably, the visit of Lt. General HH Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, UAE Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior to France late November of last year. The UAE and France are the Alliance’s founding countries that developed the concept and invited other countries to join this international working group in line with international norms and regulations.
Saif bin Zayed Surprises Officials of the New Security Alliance by honoring their countries’ citizens
Lt. General HH Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior honored a number of citizens from the new Alliance’s Member Countries in recognition of the services to their respective communities and their heroic stances in saving lives.
The UAE MoI selected the honorees following extensive communication with Emirati police attachés in UAE embassies in those countries, and after reviewing the information and data compiled about them. Travel arrangements were made for the selected individuals and the representatives of the Alliance’s six Members Countries were surprised when HH Sheikh Saif announced his intention to honor those individuals during the event. The recognition was highly praised by the honorees’ countries.
The honored individuals included UAE national Mohammed Al Zarouni, who bravely rescued five individuals from drowning in Deira Palm in Dubai when their boat sank. Bahrini national Khalid Abdurrahman Ali was also honored for saving the lives of two people who had a boat accident, as he bravely rescued them from drowning; and Samir El Harracha, from Morocco who saved a child from a house fire pending the arrival of civil defense teams, by breaking the door.
Also honored was Arnaud Vail, a French national, for his courage in saving a lady whose car was about to be hit by a train; Senegalese national Moussa Faya, who fearlessly risked his life to rescue a lady as her car was being engulfed by flames; and the Italian national Alesandor Gallo, who risked his life to rescue a man from drowning by carrying him safely to shore, despite the difficulties and obstacles.
Spanish national Ismaeel Mesquita was also honored for fearlessly rescuing an entire family from their burning four story building, by climbing a nearby crane to rescue the family members. Driven by his humane qualities and sense of responsibility; Mesquita had to carry the family’s dog that weighed more than 50 kg, exposing himself to imminent danger.
The UAE Minister of Interior’s General Secretariat
Security Media Department