n Africa Conflict Monthly Monitor - Intelligence-sharing and law enforcement in Southern Africa - : Southern Africa - issue in focus

Volume 2013, Issue 04
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The need for adequate intelligence-sharing between the states which form the Southern African Development Community (SADC) is definite and clear, largely due to the cross-border nature of many of the crime and security challenges that the region faces. One of the SADC's key objectives is to "promote peace and security within the SADC region." The current members of the SADC are South Africa, Angola, Botswana, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Seychelles, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

Despite the active participation of its member states in policing and security matters, it can be confidently argued that, due to the prevalence of cross-border crime, the SADC is currently failing, to some extent, to achieve its objective of promoting peace and security in Southern Africa. Although there have recently been successful operations against illicit drug production, smuggling groups, traffickers in human beings and rhinoceros poachers, the levels of these and other crimes have seen an overall increase in recent years. Therefore, national police forces within the SADC arguably need to increase the extent of their cooperation and, crucially, the sharing of intelligence regarding criminal activities that take part within and cross national borders.
From a policing perspective, the SADC's main concerns are terrorism, motor vehicle thefts, drugs and counterfeit pharmaceuticals, commercial crimes, firearms and explosives, trafficking in gold and precious stones, crimes against women and children, illegal immigration, crimes against wildlife and trafficking in human beings.

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