Israel at Interpol war crimes parley

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May 19, 2009 11:02

Justice Ministry sees "great importance" in Oslo conference attended by over 200 experts from world.

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Israel at Interpol war crimes parley

Interpol logo 88. (photo credit: )

A delegate from the Justice Ministry attended an Interpol conference held in Norway on Monday on international war crimes investigations, The Jerusalem Post has learned. The parley, titled the "Fourth International Expert Meeting on Genocide, War Crimes and Crimes against Humanity," is being held in Oslo. Its focus is on the issue of international jurisdictions and the growing number of specialized units among law enforcement agencies tasked with investigating genocide and war crimes. In recent years, Israeli defense officials have been the target of a series of campaigns seeking to utilize universal jurisdiction in European countries. The most recent incident took place in Spain earlier this month, when a Spanish judge approved an attempt to try seven Israeli officials over the 2002 Gaza bombing raid that killed Hamas terrorist Salah Shehadeh and 14 others. In a statement sent to the Post, the Justice Ministry said that "Israel is a member of Interpol and sends delegates to important conferences held by the organization. We believe there is great importance in attending these types of conferences, and for maintaining continuous working relations with the organization's member states." The ministry did not respond directly to a question on how such a conference could affect future attempts by Israel's adversaries to launch legal campaigns against it. Over 200 law enforcement and judicial experts from 36 countries attended the conference. "A number of challenges have been increased by a globalized society where mobility is enhanced and where the crimes committed in conflicts anywhere in the world will become our common responsibility," said Norway's national police commissioner, Ingelin Killengreen. The conference comes on the heels of the first-ever international training course for investigators concerning war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide, which was held at Interpol's General Secretariat headquarters in Lyon earlier this year, an Interpol communique added. "Investigations into war crimes are extremely complex, and while we have seen significant achievements, there still remains much to be done," said Jean-Michel Louboutin, executive director of police services for Interpol. One way in which Interpol assists investigations is through the publication of Red Notices, or international wanted persons notices, with nearly 800 notices currently issued for genocide, war crimes or crimes against humanity.


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