Interpol Celebrates Its Centenary in Vienna

The 91st session of the Interpol General Assembly, which kicked off Tuesday in Vienna with the participation of Morocco represented by a high-level delegation, led by Director General of National Security and Territorial Surveillance, Abdellatif Hammouchi, closes a year of celebrations of the 100th anniversary of the creation of the International Criminal Police Commission, as Interpol was originally called.

Throughout this year, these commemorations have served as an occasion to highlight Interpol’s distinctive position as the sole organization equipped with both the mandate and technical infrastructure to facilitate the global sharing of police information. It underscores its pivotal role in the broader international security framework.

Ahmed Naser Al-Raisi, the President of Interpol, emphasized the organization’s numerous accomplishments during the opening ceremony, citing numerous operations resulting in the apprehension of criminals, rescue of children, and confiscation of weapons, drugs, and illicit goods since its inception.

Expressing pride in these achievements, he emphasized the collective responsibility to ensure that no country or region is left behind in the ongoing battle against crime.

Austrian Federal Chancellor Karl Nehammer, speaking on the organization’s centenary, highlighted the opportunity to embark on a new chapter in the fight against international organized crime. He noted the significant progress made since Interpol’s establishment in 1923 when it began with 20 countries and has now evolved into a global force.

Interpol Secretary General Jürgen Stock underscored the organization’s commitment to leveraging a century of experience to equip member countries to confront the evolving challenges in police action over the next 100 years and beyond. In an editorial, he emphasized the need for a global response to the security crisis posed by transnational organized crime.

The foundation of the International Criminal Police Commission, later named INTERPOL, took place in 1923 during a police congress in Vienna, Austria, bringing together representatives from 20 countries. Established in a post-war context of geopolitical upheaval and concerns about rising international crime, the congress affirmed that collaboration was essential for police to combat transnational crime threats. Convened by police officials, the Vienna Congress established the foundational principles guiding INTERPOL’s work today: a focus on practical tools for cross-border law enforcement and a commitment to neutrality, principles that persist through periods of political or economic tension.

Read Also: Hammouchi Meets Austrian Intelligence Head in Vienna Talks

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