On 24 October 2017, the President of the Open Dialogue Foundation Lyudmyla Kozlovska spoke in Hromadske TV about how the international system for the exchange of information on criminals had become a repressive mechanism and how authoritarian states use the Interpol to their advantage. Lyudmyla Kozlovska explained how Interpol operates and how important was its original goal – to detain international criminals, in particular terrorists. Unfortunately, many authoritarian states as Kazakhstan, Russia or Moldova currently have abused its mechanisms to detain opposition journalists, activists or other opponents of the regime.
„At the moment, there is no alert mechanism successfully scanning politically and military motivated so called „Red Alerts”. Since the main body responsible for the examination of all notices – the Commission for the Control of INTERPOL’s File – has not been able to process such abundand amount of notices, the majority of people finds it difficult to automatically enter the Interpol system. „You may get arrested at any moment… And the procedure to take your name off the list takes years” – Kozlovska explains.
„In the last five years, we have observed a significant increase in the misuse by the authoritarian states… There are even statistics showing that when we consider the general use of the Interpol mechanisms in years 2005-2006, when about a thousand of notices were registered, we will see that – compared to 2016 – their number increased to 13.000. We don’t know what percentage out of these 13.000 have been politically motivated” – says the President of the ODF.
For this reason, the Open Dialogue Foundation has been involved in the reform of Interpol for over four years now and thanks to the suport of lawyers, human rights defenders and deputies from many European countries, the Foundation has achieved significant results in this area.