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Everything About Interpol

Context:

The Interpol has rejected a second request by India to issue a Red Corner Notice against Gurpatwant Singh Pannun, the Canada-based founder and legal advisor of the pro-Khalistan outfit Sikhs for Justice (SFJ), whom the Union Ministry of Home Affairs has listed as a “terrorist” under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA).

Relevance:

GS III: Security challenges

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. About Interpol
  2. What is a Red Notice?
  3. Is an RN a warrant of arrest?

About Interpol

  • The International Criminal Police Organization (ICPO), commonly known as INTERPOL, is an international organization that facilitates worldwide police cooperation and crime control.
  • Headquartered in Lyon, it has seven regional bureaus worldwide and a National Central Bureau in all 194 member states, making it the world’s largest police organization.
  • INTERPOL provides investigative support, expertise, and training to law enforcement worldwide, focusing on three major areas of transnational crime: terrorism, cybercrime, and organized crime.
  • Its broad mandate covers virtually every kind of crime, including crimes against humanity, child pornography, drug trafficking and production, political corruption, copyright infringement, and white-collar crime.
  • The agency also facilitates co-operation among national law enforcement institutions through criminal databases and communications networks.
  • Contrary to popular belief, INTERPOL is itself not a law enforcement agency.
  • INTERPOL is mostly funded by annual contributions by member police forces in 181 countries.
  • It is governed by a General Assembly, composed of all member countries, which elects the Executive Committee and the President.
  • Pursuant to its charter, INTERPOL seeks to remain politically neutral in fulfilling its mandate, as it is barred from interventions or activities of a political, military, religious, or racial nature or involving itself in disputes over such matters.
  • The agency operates in four languages: Arabic, English, French, and Spanish.
  • The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) is the nodal agency in the INTERPOL for India.

What is a Red Notice?

  • Criminals or suspects often flee to other countries to evade facing justice.
  • A Red Corner Notice, or Red Notice (RN) alerts police forces across the world about fugitives who are wanted internationally.
  • RNs contain information that helps identify wanted persons, such as their names, dates of birth, nationality, and physical attributes such as the colour of their hair and eyes, as well as pictures and biometric data such as fingerprints, if they are available. RNs also mention the crime(s) they are wanted for.
  • An RN is published by Interpol at the request of a member country.
  • The fugitives may be wanted for prosecution or to serve a sentence.
  • The country issuing the request need not be the home country of the fugitive; Interpol acts on the request of a country where the alleged crime has been committed.
  • These RNs are restricted for use by law enforcement authorities only.
  • An RN is published on Interpol’s website only in cases where the help of the public is needed to locate an individual, or if those individuals pose a threat to public safety.

Is an RN a warrant of arrest?

  • An RN is only an international wanted persons’ notice; it is not an international arrest warrant.
  • Interpol itself does not want individuals; they are wanted by a country or an international tribunal.
  • This means the Interpol cannot compel law enforcement authorities in any country to arrest the subject of an RN.
  • It is up to individual member countries to decide what legal value to give to an RN, and the authority of their national law enforcement officers to make arrests.
  • Every Red Notice request is checked by a specialised task force to ensure it is compliant with (Interpol) rules.
  • The Interpol argues that an RN is issued only after a competent court has taken cognisance of a chargesheet against the fugitive.

-Source: Indian Express


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