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Page last updated: May 16, 2017
Virtual Global Taskforce meeting concludes in New Zealand
  • Monday, May 15,2017

Virtual Global Taskforce meeting concludes in New Zealand

The first Virtual Global Taskforce, VGT, board meeting of 2017, which started on 8th May and was chaired by the UAE, concluded in Wellington, New Zealand, in the presence of board members, member countries, as well as private sector and public benefit organizations.
The meeting has discussed several strategic and operational initiatives and projects related to child protection from abuse and online exploitation, child victims in the justice system, investigations on the dark-web, as well as developing mechanisms of joint work, and enhancing international cooperation to fight against the dangers facing the children. Previous outcomes and a number of new projects have also been approved at the meeting. 
Dr. Nasser Lakhrerbani Al Nuaimi, elected President of the VGT, said that the task force strategy would be renewed this year. He cited a number of vital projects managed by the task force such as the capacity building project and the strategic relations for service providers’ project, which will positively impact the results of 2017 and 2018.
Dr. Al Nuaimi added that these two years will witness concrete developments in the unifications of mechanisms addressing children’s protection from Internet risks. He pointed to investigation, training and field work activities for both member and other countries.
He also highlighted that even though many other international groups work on this issue, the VGT operates in a strategic field-based way. This is in cooperation with service providers from the public sector and public benefit organizations combatting child abuse through joint projects, the results of which are monitored periodically.
The VGT president said that member countries agreed, during the meeting, to promote cooperation for the implementation of further concrete procedures, the building of robust and exceptional relations, and exchange of information at the regional and international levels to deter perpetrators and promote joint action to protect children from risks of the Internet.
The New Zealand Police expressed its happiness in hosting the bi-annual VGT meeting in the city of Wellington, stressing the importance of the meeting’s outputs. The meeting comprised projects and initiatives to assist member countries in the pursuit of protecting children, as well as holding workshops in cooperation with the private sector.
Dutch National Police (DNP) representative Peter Reijnders expressed his satisfaction with the outcomes of the VGT meeting, pointing out that the meeting was extremely successful as it attracted representatives from law enforcement, non-government organizations and private partner to exchange new ideas and actions on the fight against sexual child exploitation worldwide.

"Our victim orientation was reestablished and thrived the VGT partnership forward", he added, noting that the DNP last year saved over 200 victims from sexual child abuse. 

Keith Niven of the UK National Crime Agencypraised the meeting's fruitful outcomes including the promotion of international cooperation, the consolidation of visions and the exchange of ideas and experiences in protecting and saving children from abuse and exploitation.

Debbie Platers of the Australian Federal Police spoke of the importance of joint action and said, "At the moment, only 40% of the world is connected to the Web. We, as Member States, could notice the rapid spread and danger of the internet materials. She underscored the vital role of Virtual Global Force in tackling this crime.

South Korea and Australia have submitted requests to host the bi-annual board meetings in 2018, which will be scheduled later. 

Bjorn Sellstorm, of the Interpolpraised the meeting fruitful outputs, indicating thatall of law enforcement agencies,including the organizations and private partners have shown a great deal of commitment towards achieving the works and aspirations of the VGT on dealing with child abuse issues.

"We need to find our way to reach out and make VGT’s voice heard and listened to all", he added, praising the efforts of the VGT Secretariat in UAE and describing it as "pioneering and exceptional". He also appreciated the warm welcome and hosting by the New Zealand Police.

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