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05BANGKOK2575 THAILAND: ARF ISM DISCUSSES DOCUMENT SECURITY AND LAW ENFORCEMENT COOPERATION

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This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 BANGKOK 002575

 

SIPDIS

 

DEPARTMENT FOR EAP, S/CT, CA

PACOM FOR FPA (HUSO)

 

E.O. 12958: N/A

TAGS: ASEC PREL PTER TH ARF

SUBJECT: THAILAND: ARF ISM DISCUSSES DOCUMENT SECURITY AND

LAW ENFORCEMENT COOPERATION

 

¶1. (U) Summary: Thailand and Canada co-chaired the third

ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) Inter-Sessional Meeting (ISM) on

Counter-Terrorism and Transnational Crime April 6-8 in

Bangkok, which focused on intelligence and information

sharing, document security and integrity, and police and law

enforcement cooperation. Participants agreed with the

co-chair’s suggestion not to institutionalize the ISM by

transforming the ad hoc ISM into a permanent Inter-sessional

Group at this time. Recommendations from the ISM (which was

attended by all ARF members except the DPRK) will be sent for

approval to the ARF Senior Officials Meeting in Laos in May.

The draft Chairman’s Statement, which is open for comment

from capitals, follows in para 5. China and Brunei announced

that they will co-host the next ARF ISM. End Summary.

 

¶2. (U) S/CT Deputy Coordinator for Counterterrorism Amb. John

Dinger led the U.S. delegation, which included Chris Marut

(EAP/RSP), Karen Chandler (S/CT), and Brian Vaillancourt

(DHS/ICE Assistant Attach, Embassy Bangkok). The U.S.

presentation to the plenary on Document Integrity and

Security encouraged consideration of two key recommendations:

1) ARF members should contribute actively to INTERPOL’s Lost

and Stolen Passport Database; and, 2) ARF should commit to

adopting the travel document standards established by the

International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), with a

commitment by ARF member states to implement the standards.

 

¶3. (U) Breakout sessions focused on Information Sharing

Policies and Practices, Combating Document Fraud, and Police

and Law Enforcement Cooperation. Based on discussion and

presentations in the breakout sessions, participants agreed

on recommendations to the Senior Officials which included

establishing national points of contact for information

exchange, actively participating in implementation of ICAO

standards, utilizing the INTERPOL lost and stolen passport

database, and strengthening capacity building by utilizing

the regional training centers such as the International Law

Enforcement Academy (ILEA) Bangkok, the Jakarta Center for

Law Enforcement Cooperation (JCLEC) and the Southeast Asia

Regional Center for Counterterrorism (SEARCCT).

 

¶4. (U) In the final plenary discussion of the draft

Chairman’s Statement, the Indian delegation raised the issue

of institutionalizing the ISM, which currently meets annually

on an ad hoc basis, by transforming it into a standing

Inter-Sessional Group (ISG). The Thai co-chair commented

that ARF participants have mixed feelings about creating a

permanent ISG but noted that all participants currently agree

on the benefit of continuing to meet annually. Consequently,

the co-chair recommended that there was no need to raise the

issue further at this time by including it in the Chairman’s

statement.

 

¶5. (U) Begin text of Draft Chairman’s Statement:

 

(DRAFT) ASEAN REGIONAL FORUM (ARF) STATEMENT ON INFORMATION

SHARING AND INTELLIGENCE EXCHANGE AND DOCUMENT INTEGRITY AND

SECURITY IN ENHANCING COOPERATION TO COMBAT TERRORISM AND

OTHER TRANSNATIONAL CRIMES

 

The Chairman of the ASEAN Regional Forum, on behalf of the

ARF participating states and organization, issues the

following statement:

 

Recognizing that:

 

Terrorism and other transnational crimes, such as money

laundering, arms smuggling, people trafficking and smuggling,

the production of and trafficking in illicit drugs, sea

piracy, international economic crime, and cyber crime all

pose significant threats to the peace, order, and security of

our countries and our peoples;

 

Effective regional and global action requires a comprehensive

approach and unprecedented international cooperation built

upon agreed common norms, standards, institutions, and

international agreements;

 

Effective information and intelligence exchange among states

is an essential contribution to these efforts and that

information must be exchanged in a managed, responsible and

systematic manner, including appropriate protections for

sensitive and national security information obtained from

others and adequate respect for and protection of personal

privacy and other human rights;

 

The integrity and security of national identity, travel and

other documents is a vital contribution to ensuring the

security of our citizens and to identifying, apprehending and

prosecuting terrorist and other offenders.

 

Committed to:

 

Further improving effective cooperation among ARF

participants in these efforts.

 

The ARF notes the progress that has already been made in

strengthening cooperation and encourages ARF governments to

further enhance their efforts and commitment to combat

terrorism and transnational crime in a more comprehensive

manner on a voluntary basis, taking into account resources

and capacity of ARF participants and in accordance with their

respective national laws, in particular through efforts:

 

–to better exchange relevant information and intelligence in

a timely, effective and systematic manner on the basis of

bilateral, regional or other information-sharing agreements,

bearing in mind that such information and intelligence shall

not be further disclosed or disseminated without the official

authorization of the originator;

–to ensure that adequate national protections for sensitive

and other information obtained from foreign partners are in

place and effective;

–to ensure that the privacy and other rights of individuals

about whom personal information is exchanged between states

are respected and protected;

–to implement more secure and fraud-resistant documents

based upon internationally agreed standards and containing

appropriate biometric identifiers and to foster cooperation

on adoption of Machine Readable Travel Document (MRTD), with

biometrics if possible;

–to criminalize, investigate, and prosecute the possession

or creation of fraudulent national identity, travel and other

documents from any country;

–to actively contribute on an ongoing basis to the INTERPOL

database of lost and stolen travel documents, bearing in mind

other effective channels of cooperation that exist;

–to actively participate in the elaboration and

implementation of new international document standards

through ICAO and other international, regional and functional

organizations;

–to strengthen ARF law enforcement cooperation on the basis

of bilateral and multilateral agreements and through the use

of existing mechanisms, in particular INTERPOL and its I 24/7

communications network for the exchange of information;

–to further strengthen international capacity building

cooperation and assistance including through existing

regional centers such as, inter alia, the International law

Enforcement Academy (ILEA), the Jakarta Centre for Law

Enforcement Cooperation (JCLEC), and the Southeast Asia

Regional Centre for Counter-Terrorism (SEARCCT).

 

ARF participating states and organizations are to review the

progress of these and other efforts to further strengthen

cooperation against terrorism and transnational crime at the

13th ARF Ministerial Meeting in 2006.

 

End text.

 

¶6. (U) Amb. John Dinger has cleared this cable.

BOYCE

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Written by thaicables

August 28, 2011 at 5:58 am

Posted in Security, Unclassified

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