ASEANAPOL firstly initiated in Manila, the Philippines in the formal meeting of the chiefs (1981). In its preliminary time of establishment, the members of ASEANAPOL were originally Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines, but since 2000, all ASEAN members have been officially in. ASEANAPOL was urged by the needs to enhance the professionalism of police, forging stronger regional cooperation in policing as well as promoting lasting friendship amongst police officers of member countries.
Its basic aim is to discuss matters of law enforcement and crime control among member as evoked in the tagline, “Together we keep this region safe”. The Secretariat made on a rotational basis with member countries taking turns to host the ASEANAPOL Conference and automatically assume the role of the secretariat for the current year. Within the permanent secretariat, the executive director is elected for 2 years of service tenure along with two directors for 2-3 years. Since 2010, ASEANAPOL’s office was addressed in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The annual conference is held also on the rotational basis and attended by the chiefs of police of each member countries. The latest conference (37th) was apparently held in Singapore at September 2017
Collaborating Partners and Observers
ASEANAPOL has been collaborating with international police bases beyond the region. As it evoked in the official website, there are several institutions such as International Association of Police Academia (INTERPA), Pacific Island Chiefs of Police (PICP) ; with international security agencies such as United Nations Counter Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate (UN CTED), Freeland, The Asia Pacific Medico Legal Agencies (APMLA), The World Border Organization, Canada (BORDEPOL), Central ASEAN Regional Information and Coordination Center for Combating the Illicit Drug (CARICC), Secretariat of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Fauna and Flora (CITIES), Southeast European Law Enforcement Center (SELEC). Beside the permanent members, there some agencies also taking part as observers and dialogue which are accepted by following criteria(s) and procedure(s) drafted in the guideline. The dialogue partners consist of Australia, China, Japan, Republic of Korea, New Zealand, Federation of Russia, Turkey, ASEAN Secretariat, and INTERPOL. The observers are Timor Leste National Police, National Crime Agency (UK), Europol, ASEAN WEN-Wildlife Enforcement Network, International Association Chief of Police (IACP), and ICRC. Indeed, a broaden collaboration is purposed to enhance regional police cooperation towards preventing and combating transnational crime and in matters of common interest.
During 37 years of its operational, ASEANAPOL has been actively engaged in both its member countries or international activities and events related to security and safety. In November 2017, ASEANAPOL Secretariat, represented by the Director for Police Services participated lice Senior Superintendent Ferdinand Realtor P Bartolome, participated on the Third Regional Police Conference on the Use of Practical-Based Training for Police Officers jointly Hosted by the Indonesian Police Academy (AKPOL) in Indonesia. Yet during this year, ASEANAPOL also participated in 8th APTCM hosted by Singapore Police Force. The two days meeting were attended by 10 ASEANAPOL member countries, dialogue partners, and observes examined the annual training progress, encountered challenges and future plans on training cooperation. With the regard to maritime security, the working group meeting on Maritime Security for Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, and Vietnam was conducted in Vietnam, in October 2017. The meeting aimed to enhance national and regional maritime law enforcement cooperation. ASEANAPOL attended along with 25 representatives coming from countries, also Canada in the meeting that hosted by INTERPOL.
Furthermore, in the latest conference – 37th which was hosted in Singapore this September, resulting in the Joint Communique: evoking the collaboration on transnational crime countermeasures and capacity building. The capacity building worked on the issues of illicit drugs trafficking, terrorism, arms smuggling, trafficking in persons, wildlife crime, maritime fraud, commercial crime, bank offences and credit card fraud, cybercrime, fraudulent travel documents, transnational fraud, electronic ASEANAPOL database system (e-ADS), mutual assistance in criminal matters, exchange of personnel and training programs amongst ASEAN police forces and ASEAN forensic network (APFSN). Also, it is evoked that ASEANAPOL conference is subtly accommodating bilateral meeting amongst member countries to deal with current issues may be arisen.
Writer : Atina Rosydiana