INTERPOL Delegates Elect First Female President

Mireille Ballestrazzi, deputy central director of the French Judicial Police, was elected to serve a four-year term.

More than 1,000 delegates attending INTERPOL's 81st General Assembly elected a woman as the organization's president for the first time. The international law enforcement organization's meeting ended Nov. 8 in Rome after the delegates elected Mireille Ballestrazzi, deputy central director of the French Judicial Police. She will serve a four-year term.

"I am wholly committed to the fundamental role INTERPOL must play in global police cooperation," Ballestrazzi said. "By establishing the INTERPOL Global Complex for Innovation and leading other recent initiatives, INTERPOL has placed itself at the forefront of innovation which I will continue to fully support. There is no doubt that this direction will open up drastically new perspectives for INTERPOL and its member countries worldwide as we face together the challenges of today and tomorrow."

INTERPOL Secretary General Ronald K. Noble said Ballestrazzi's election reflects the active role of men and women in the international law enforcement community. "As the world’s largest police organization, it is essential that INTERPOL's leadership offers the best policing and expertise to its 190 member countries in order to meet their needs," he said. "Mireille Ballestrazzi's appointment as president of INTERPOL comes at a time when countries are adapting to the realities of the changing nature of transnational organized crime in the 21st century. She brings invaluable experience in cross-border police collaboration to her role, as well as proven leadership abilities, and I look forward to working closely with her to ensure that INTERPOL continues to provide innovative responses to meet the needs of our member countries."

Also elected to the organization's Executive Committee were Alan Bersin, assistant secretary of International Affairs for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (Vice President for the Americas); Nobuyuki Kawai, director of the Organized Crime Department of the National Police Academy of Japan (Vice President for Asia); Algeria's Abdelkader Kara Bouhadba, Commissaire Divisionnaire de Police, Directeur de la Police Judiciaire (Delegate for Africa); Bob Paulson, commissioner of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (Delegate for the Americas); Jong Yang Kim of the Korean National Police Agency and head of INTERPOL's National Central Bureau in Seoul (Delegate for Asia); Brigadier General Saoud Abdallah Al-Mahmoud, director of the International Cooperation Department of Qatar’s Ministry of Interior (Delegate for Asia); and Filippo Dispenza, Brigadier General of the Italian National Police (Delegate for Europe).

The delegates, who represented more than 170 countries, endorsed resolutions on maritime piracy, illegal trafficking in cultural property, and cybercrime, and INTERPOL also launched an initiative to support the safety and security of the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar.

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