Rob Boone, Deputy Assistant Secretary
International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs
Remarks at the Signing of the ILEA Agreement With the
Government of Botswana
Gaborone, Botswana, July 24, 2000
Minister Seretse, Commissioner Moleboge, Ambassadors and members of the Diplomatic Corps:
I am delighted to be here in Gaborone on behalf of the Secretary of State to witness the signing of this historic agreement to establish the International Law Enforcement Academy for Africa (ILEA).
This agreement represents not only a high level of cooperation between the United States and Botswana, and ultimately among all of our regional partners, but also our shared aspirations for southern Africa, and, indeed, for the whole of Africa, which has emerged as a continent of new hope and dreams for renewed democracy and security.
The establishment of the International Law Enforcement Academy represents our continued hopes for solving crime problems that threaten society and economic well-being. With the ILEA, we will be able to provide a steady stream of training in core law enforcement skills for the police as well as for members of the judiciary who must respond to the rampant crime that challenges Africa's democracies and economies.
In concert with the Government of Botswana, my Bureau for International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs is proud to put our resources toward addressing those training and operational problems that plague police agencies and hinder judges and prosecutors in securing convictions that are needed to prevent crime and bring criminals to justice.
I expect the core curriculum of the new International Law Enforcement Academy to follow the model developed in our successful ILEAs in Budapest and Bangkok in providing courses on a wide range of law enforcement skills: police survival, forensics, basic case management, fighting organized crime, supervisory police training, police strategy, narcotics identification and evidence handling, customs interdiction, illegal migration, and public corruption to name just a few.
In addition to the core courses, the ILEA will provide us with a permanent location from which we can address special topics: stolen vehicles, money laundering, crimes against women, domestic violence, terrorism, and other critical topics such as human rights and policing.
We will work closely with SARPCCO and the Government of Botswana to ensure that the ILEA Gaborone delivers training that will help us create the skilled professional police and judiciary forces needed in Africa today.
Even though we will not have the physical plant for the ILEA ready until the late summer of 2001, we are already working on bringing essential training courses to southern African nations. For example, soon we will be providing training on customs and border control and small arms trafficking for the region. We hope to be able to bring several representatives from each of the SADC countries together to begin this regional endeavor in cooperative crime fighting.
Crime is no longer a local phenomenon. Crime knows no boundaries. It is transnational and requires transnational solutions. The need for this regional cooperation is great, and we believe that the ILEA will be a focal point of this much-needed activity. Each of the countries in this region will be keys to our collective success. And I thank each for its efforts.
Of course, I want to thank the Government of Botswana for its leadership and foresight to see ILEA Gaborone become a reality. Botswana is a country that shares our vision for a secure and safe Africa, and we have been greatly successful in finding a great partner in Botswana in this endeavor.
Botswana is a most suitable site for a center for regional training. The cooperation we have engendered today by the creation of the ILEA will be a promise for Africa and her children that their lives will be peaceful, secure, and prosperous.
The commitment of the Government of Botswana, and especially of the Police Commission, toward human rights and policing has not gone unnoticed. It is one more reason we are confident that our partnership will be a fruitful and harmonious one.
We want to thank President Mogae, Minister Seretse, and Attorney General Skelemani for their strong support throughout the process that has brought us here today.
Police Commissioner Moleboge's participation also was essential in our reaching a final agreement. I want to thank him for his efforts. I've had the privilege of working with the Commissioner in Vienna in the negotiation of the UN Convention Against Transnational Organized Crime. I look forward to our successful completion of that instrument and related protocols later this year.
The United States takes great pride in what we are about to achieve with Botswana for the people of this beautiful country and region. We and all the beneficiaries of this collective endeavor in the creation of a regional law enforcement training academy, the ILEA Gaborone, thank the Government of Botswana in its generous and unselfish leadership in making this dream for Africa a reality at the dawn of a new millennium.
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