CIS Internal Ministries Further Law Enforcement Cooperation

ASTANA – The Council of Ministers of Internal Affairs (CMIA) of the participating states of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) met in Astana on Sep. 10 to discuss priorities for cooperation among CIS Ministries of Internal Affairs and the implementation of international programmes in combating crime.

The ministers discussed a draft concept of cooperation among the Ministries of Internal Affairs until 2020, the status of the preparation of a draft document defining the procedure for international detection of persons and a draft regulation on the Scientific Advisory Board under the CMIA.

In addition, members of the council considered measures to improve the effectiveness of the implementation of an agreement on cooperation in the return of minors to their state of residence, as well as improving the mechanism for the supervision of persons convicted and serving sentence in the territory of other CIS countries. The interior ministers heard updates on projects, including the International State Programme of Joint Measures to Combat Crime in 2014-18 and the Programme of Cooperation in the fight against illicit trafficking in narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances and their precursors, and against drug abuse for 2014-18.

“Together with the Ministers of Internal Affairs of the Russian Federation and the Republic of Belarus, we will separately discuss the problems of interaction and define the future direction of joint activity of our ministries within the Customs Union and Common Economic Space,” said Kazakhstan Minister of Internal Affairs Kalmukhanbet Kassymov before the meeting.

President Nursultan Nazarbayev noted in his speech to the ministers that the first meeting of interior ministers of CIS countries was held in Almaty.

“The advantage of the CIS is that the heads of the participating states meet regularly and negotiate various issues. All the countries are interested in law and order today; otherwise, no reforms and development of the countries can take place. Therefore, mutual assistance is important because the criminals realize that they have no place to hide because you closely interact and help each other. There is a great benefit and need in it,” he said.

Nazarbayev said Kazakhstan has been heavily involved in advancing law enforcement reforms over the last three years.

“Major certification of personnel was held, a significant reduction of personnel in law enforcement agencies significantly influenced on the increasein social security of police. Their salaries and other benefits were equaled to military men. Drafts Criminal, Criminal Procedure and the Criminal-Executive Codes are under consideration now. The essence of innovation is to decriminalize and reduce the prison population,” Nazarbayev said. The president also informed the participants of the council about changes in approaches to assessing the quality of law enforcement forces.

“Interaction of law enforcement agencies with the relevant bodies of other countries is of great importance. The documents and agreements you adopt are important for each of our countries. Therefore, I proposed the establishment of a CIS analogue of Interpol. This issue will be discussed, and if you support it, something similar will be established for a joint fight against crime on our territories of our countries,” Nazarbayev said.

Kassymov discussed the adoption of the concept for development of cooperation among the CIS Ministries of Internal Affairs until 2020.

“Today, at the Council of Ministers of Internal Affairs (CMIA) of the CIS in Astana, we adopted the concept for development of cooperation among our ministries until 2020, and considered a number of other more pressing problems in the fight against crime in the CIS,” Kassymov said.

Kassymov also stressed that the council’s work will provide a new impetus for cooperation among the interior ministries of the CIS countries.

“I am pleased to note that the Council of Ministers of Internal Affairs, which is a branch of CIS interaction, has earned a high reputation. Thanks to the efficient work of the council, the law enforcement sphere is one of the most productive in the cooperation among our countries,” Kassymov said, as he took over as chairperson of the CIS CMIA.

“I am convinced that today’s meeting, as each meeting of the council, is a significant step in our continued progress in joint counteraction to modern challenges and threats,” Kassymov added.

The CMIA meeting in Astana was attended by the heads of all the Ministries of Internal Affairs of the Commonwealth of Independent States, leaders of the Bureau on Coordination of the Fight against Organized Crime and Other Dangerous Crimes on the CIS Territory and the Anti-Terrorism Center of the CIS participating states.

The Council of Ministers of Internal Affairs was created in 1996 to ensure the interaction of the CIS countries in the fight against crime and law enforcement. It includes representatives of Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Russia, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Ukraine. Representatives of Turkmenistan take part in individual meetings of the CMIA.

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