16 May 2019
Rafael Ríos, coordinator of A-TIPSOM: the fight against people trafficking and irregular migration in Nigeria, explains how he has been adapting to the country, what his daily routine is like, and what it is like to work as a FIIAPP expatriate.
How long have you been in Nigeria? How have you adapted to this country?
I arrived on 16 July 2018. When you arrive in a new country, as you can imagine, it is not always easy. I remember hearing about other projects, from other colleagues who had been in or were in other countries, who said “the beginning is always the hardest”. For me this has been a bit simpler, or less complicated, and I’ll tell you why. In this country we already had the embassy staff, and they helped us with everything from the outset, arriving in the country, accreditations, looking for accommodation, the office, etc. We spent almost four months in a small office that they kindly lent us until we were able to move. I wish you could count on this kind of support every time you started a project.
What has been the most difficult aspect to adapt to, and the easiest?
The hardest part was perhaps the second week. During the first week everything is frenetic, you have so many things on your plate… But the second week was like coming back down to Earth. That’s when I really started to realize where I was, and the step that I’d taken. Such a long project with so many important challenges. The easiest thing was perhaps meeting people, dealing with the Nigerians, who I think are happy people who enjoy their country and who, in general, welcome newcomers quite readily.
Is this your first experience outside of Spain?
No, it’s not. Belonging to the National Police gives you opportunities like this, discovering other countries and destinations, doing what you enjoy and what you know best. Previously I’d done different jobs in African countries, on short-term missions in Mauritania, Guinea Bissau, Senegal, as well as in Europe, in Italy to be precise.
In light of this, is this proving to be very different to your previous missions?
The concept behind this mission is quite different. This one is long-term and involves a permanent deployment in another country plus working as an expert for FIIAPP . It’s something else entirely, and it’s a big professional challenge for me, since what we are trying to achieve with this project is very alluring, and at the same time very ambitious .
What is your work like, your daily routine?
Honestly, I think it’s not that different. Here, because of the hot weather, you get up and start work quite early. We get to the office, have meetings, go out to the different places we need to visit as part of the project. Usually we have lunch at the office and return home in mid-afternoon.
Is it very different from the routine you had in Spain?
As I said, it is a job that requires a lot of contact with one’s counterparts,which means you are often out of the office, and I find that quite interesting.
What is your relationship like with the FIIAPP team in Madrid?
Great! I would say that, in addition to having a great professional relationship, we talk every day, we share ideas, etc. We have even created bonds that are enabling us to achieve better results in the project, of that I am sure.
And with your colleagues in Nigeria?
The same. Several months on, the team in the field has been growing, with Nigerian personnel, which helps us a lot to understand their way of working, what they’re like, their customs.
How would you assess your experience of working as a FIIAPP expatriate?
It is very positive so far. I think it is helping me to understand how an institution like FIIAPP copes with so many projects and with the scope of the work it does. The training, its structure and its values are enabling me to acquire knowledge. When you belong to an institution like the National Police, sometimes you focus so much on your professional life that you do not realize how work is done elsewhere, so the project is helping to train me both professionally and personally .
Do you have any experiences or anecdotes about your arrival in or adaptation to the country?
Well, I could tell you several, but I’ll just say that I like saying good morning and learning new words in a dialect called Hausa, and in the building where we work I usually see two young people who like to teach me words like that: good morning, let’s go, go ahead… and it makes them laugh when they hear me pronounce them… Inakwana, which means good morning, is part of the day-to-day.
11 April 2019
Posteado en : Opinion
José Manuel Colodrás is a Chief Inspector of Police and Project Coordinator in Ukraine
The project is funded by the and managed by FIIAPP. It is run in five regions that cover what has been called the “Heroin Route”, though in reality there is more than one route involved. Ukraine is the priority country in the Eastern European region.
The aim of the EU-ACT project in Ukraine is to promote an all-encompassing approach to the problem of drugs: to support the work of the institutions responsible for strengthening law enforcement while favouring demand control. Accordingly, the scope of work of EU-ACT covers different sectors of the Ukrainian Public Administration and civil society. A fact easily attested to by simply pointing to the “registered” beneficiaries before the Government of Ukraine: , the Drug Observatory, the Medication and Drug Control Service, the State Tax Service, the and within this the , the Office, the Ukraine Administration of Justice Service, the , the and the of Ukraine.
As stated in its Description of Action (DoA), this project takes an innovative approach to establishing its activities by paying heed to the needs expressed by its beneficiaries. So much so that an agreement was reached with them on the main areas of development of the project in the Ukraine, which are the following:
(2013-2020) and the Action Plan (2018-2020) that develops this strategy in which the EU-ACT project has participated in the design phase highlighting, among other activities, support for the participation of the Ukrainian Delegation in the Commission on Narcotic Drugs of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime ( ), both at the 61st session (2018) and the 62nd session (2019). Moreover, continuous advice and support has been given in all those legal initiatives related to drug policy. In this regard, the following measures are particularly worthy of mention: regulation of the use of Naloxone to avoid deaths by overdose, the decriminalisation of the possession of small quantities of drugs for self-consumption, the extending of the powers of the Ukraine Drug Observatory and the establishment of alternative measures to prison for minor offences related to drug use.
Furthermore, the project also participates in the initiative and the development of the National Rehabilitation Programme for prisoners with mental and behavioural disorders caused by the consumption of psychoactive substances. This activity is developed in collaboration with the Ukraine Prison Service.
In addition, backing is being given to the creation of an Investigation Coordination Centre for crimes related to drug trafficking between the different Ukraine police agencies, which represents a first step in implementing an intelligence model in the Ukraine that will allow policy makers to make evidence-based decisions. To this end, the best practice or model to be followed has been chosen: the (CITCO) which is attached to
On the initiative of the Ukrainian Public Prosecutor’s Office and with the support of the Ukraine Regional Office, the EU-ACT project launched the Network of Black Sea Public Prosecutors in September 2018 in the city of Odessa (Ukraine), which has already brought together public prosecutors from Moldova, Romania, Bulgaria, Georgia, Armenia, Iran and Ukraine.
The EU-ACT project also supports the integration of Ukrainian administrations into European Union institutions, as well as other supranational organisations. These include the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addictions , the European Network of Forensic Science Institutes or the Paris Pact Initiative (PPI).
With respect to the fight against the illegal trafficking of psychoactive substances, criminal organisation leaders are being deprived of the gains obtained from their criminal activity as this is the only way to obtain a relevant and prolonged impact against this activity. The EU-ACT Regional Office together with the Ukraine Intelligence Unit and all the agencies responsible for strengthening the enforcement of the law of Ukraine is developing a method adapted to the country to carry out financial investigations in parallel to the traditional ones in this area.
One of the objectives of EU-ACT is to strengthen the inter- and intra–regional cooperation of the countries in which the project is carried out, thus backing the joint investigation work of Ukrainian police forces and prosecutors with other countries, while at the same time encouraging the exchange of experts between countries, both under the project itself and within the context of the programme.
21 March 2019
Today, 21 March, is the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. To celebrate this date, we are having a chat with Lucía Molo, technician of the “Living without discrimination” project.
Today is International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. What do you think international days are for?
One of the objectives of the initiative promoted by the United Nations to mark international days in the calendar is to draw attention and raise public awareness to a problem. These are issues where there is still much work to be done, which is why they are the perfect excuse to remind society and governments that they need to act.
What is racial discrimination?
According to European Union regulations, direct racial discrimination exists whena person is treated less favourably based on their race, colour, language, religion, nationality or national or ethnic origin than another person in a comparable situation. It also recognises that discrimination can exist when people are treated differently in similar situations, but also when they are treated identically in different situations. This latter form of discrimination is called “indirect” because it is not the treatment that differs, but its effects, which affect different people with different characteristics in different ways.
Every day there are discriminatory incidents due to racial or ethnic origin, affecting refugees and immigrants, the Roma community, as well as other vulnerable groups. If we stop, for example, to read job vacancies, we are certain to find one which clearly specifies a preference for candidates of Spanish origin, thus excluding the foreign population.
How engaged do you think the population is with this issue? More or less than before?
I believe that society, generally speaking, does not intentionally or voluntarily discriminate against people of another race or ethnicity. Factors such as ignorance, fear of differences, prejudice and misinformation lead to discrimination. But I also believe that these situations arise as a result of insufficient political involvement that should, in my view, focus more efforts on prevention, public awareness and information.
In fact, the United Nations has acknowledged the rise in nationalist populism, with extremist ideologies of racial supremacy and superiority, thus producing more racist movements. In the latest UN Special Rapporteur’s report on contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance of August 2018, she explains the contemporary use of digital technology in the propagation of neo-Nazi intolerance and related forms of intolerance. It points to recent trends and statements that exalt Nazism and other practices that contribute to the promotion of contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and intolerance.
How can discrimination be prevented?
First, the right to non-discrimination must be supported by legal safeguards that help to prevent this type of situation. In addition, information, training and awareness actions in interculturality and tolerance ethics must be reinforced . This goes for both citizens and government employees.
On the other hand, it is important that there be public policies that ensure non-discrimination. Spain has launched different actions in this regard: the creation of a Spanish Observatory on Racism and Xenophobia (OBERAXE) in the Ministry of Labour, Migration and Social Security, the creation of the figure of delegated prosecutors for hate crimes and discrimination within the General Council of the Judiciary, the implementation of a system to gather incidents related to hate crimes and discrimination in the Ministry of the Interior and the Assistance Service for Victims of Racial and Ethnic Discrimination of the Ministry of the Presidency, Parliament Relations and Equality .
Is FIIAPP working on this issue? How?
The FIIAPP works directly in the fight against racial discrimination through a delegated cooperation project in the Kingdom of Morocco called “Living together without discrimination: an approach based on human rights and the gender dimension” funded by the Emergency Trust Fund for Stability in Africa of the European Union. The FIIAPP and the AECID participate in its management . It also collaborates with Spanish and Moroccan institutions such as OBERAXE, the Delegate Ministry in charge of Moroccans Resident Abroad and Migration Issues and the National Human Rights Council of Morocco.
What is the purpose of this project?
The main objective of the project is to reinforce instruments and public policies aimed at preventing and combating racism and xenophobia towards the migrant population in the Kingdom of Morocco. It seeks to strengthen the capacities of key institutional and non-state actors (civil society, media, private sector …) in the implementation of initiatives to prevent racism and xenophobia towards the migrant population, through accompaniment, exchange and transfer of knowledge.
Any reflection on the subject to make us all think?
One of the reflections that emerged repeatedly during the workshop organised by the EUROsociAL + programme on human mobility on 19 March was that everything looks different when we put ourselves in the shoes of the other person .
I like the idea raised by the NGO Movement against Intolerance that there is only one race: the human race. If people began to see each other as sisters and brothers, I am sure that it would not be long before we no longer had reason to mark this day.
07 March 2019
Posteado en : Opinion
Project coordinator Francisca Guzmán reflects on the importance of legislative adaptation to the country in this matter
Morocco has a long history in the regulation of the carriage of dangerous goods by road. The country has been a signatory of the European Agreement concerning the international carriage of dangerous goods by road (ADR) since 2001 and ten years later, in 2011, Law 30/05 was published that regulates the carriage of dangerous goods in the country. This establishes the framework for this mode of transport but refers local transport to the effective application of the international agreement.. Going a step further on this path, the FIIAPP now manages, in collaboration with the Ministry of Public Works, a twinning project in Morocco that, funded by the European Union, is committed to safety in the carriage of dangerous goods by road based on the ADR.
This project aims to improve safety and strengthen the structure and activities related to the carriage of dangerous goods by road, and its main objective is the preparation of the regulatory texts mentioned in Law 30/05.
The necessary regulations for the application of ADR in domestic transport, adapted to the intrinsic characteristics of the country, have already been developed by the Spanish specialists participating in this project. The Moroccan Administration, after the legal wording of these texts has been adapted to the Moroccan legislative technique, will begin the administrative procedure for the approval and publication of the set of laws that will regulate not only the carriage of dangerous goods, but also all fields which concern and are affected by this carriage.
The carriage of dangerous goods is multifaceted, meaning that many ministries, professional sectors and organisations are involved, hence the complexity of this twinning which, although it actually belongs to the Moroccan Ministry of Transport, affects and requires collaboration and cooperation by other ministries and agencies of the Moroccan administration. Hence the complexity, the difficulty and the captivating nature of the project, which concerns a large part of the administration of a country, numerous professional and economic sectors and, best of all, affects all citizens. We must not forget that the ultimate objective is to make the carriage of dangerous goods safer, since these goods are transported at all hours, every day. Suffice to mention the carriage of gas bottles, which is very common in this country.
Therefore, taking into account the progress made with the project and aware of the difficulties entailed by legislative publications in all countries, we can confirm, without fear of error, that Morocco is at the starting point of the application of ADR in its territory, which will mean a very important added value for this country, and it will be the first country in this area to fully apply this agreement. This will help Morocco to become the first country in North Africa and the Atlantic façade to apply ADR to its internal transport, always adapted to the intrinsic characteristics of this territory.
The international scope of the project has facilitated the introduction of the Moroccan administration into the international groups of the United Nations where the details of the ADR rules are discussed, approved and debated. This will give Morocco the opportunity to discuss, propose, and understand the situation of this mode of transport in the rest of the countries that have signed the ADR agreement. In addition, it will enable Morocco to achieve an important, prominent status in its regional area, in particular, with regard to North African countries and the Mediterranean basin.
Thus, after effective application of the texts in Morocco, the country will be the leader of this type of transport in its region. All this will assist economic consolidation, consolidation of the road transport sector and, most of all, it will help to make transport safer, which will directly affect the citizens of this country, its infrastructures and the environment. Once again, cooperation will have provided a country with the necessary tools to drive economic and social development and good governance .
08 June 2018
CIVIPOL has been the technical cooperation operator of the French Ministry of the Interior since 2001. Its activities are mainly carried out at the international level and it is essentially financed by the European Union. Yann Jounot is the General Director of CIVIPOL and he speaks to us in this interview about the consultancy's work and his work with FIIAPP
What is CIVIPOL and what does it do?
CIVIPOL is the French Ministry of the Interior’s consulting and service company. Its role is to enhance the work of experts at the international level, particularly in the context of development projects financed by the European Commission, the World Bank, etc.
In addition, the company is involved in all the areas belonging to the Ministry in France: Police, Territorial Government, Civil Security and also civil status and mine clearance.
Which sectors and geographical areas are a priority for CIVIPOL?
The priority geographical areas for CIVIPOL are those covered by the Ministry of the Interior. On the one hand, West Africa, in particular the Sahara region, and the Maghreb region and the Middle East. On the other, in recent years the company has also developed its activities, particularly in East Africa and in English-speaking Africa in general (Nigeria and Kenya, for example).
One of CIVIPOL’s main activities is managing projects financed by the European Commission. In this regard, how do you view FIIAPP and what is your relationship with the Foundation?
FIIAPP is a historic and strategic partner for CIVIPOL. The Foundation shares with CIVIPOL the objective of supporting public policies, and our staff has long maintained day-to-day relations with FIIAPP’s justice and security sectors, which are our regular contact points.
Which projects are CIVIPOL and FIIAPP currently collaborating on?
We are currently collaborating on 10 projects, mainly in the areas of security, within a wide geographical area. These projects include: strengthening the police in Myanmar; GAR-SI Sahel and the fight against organised crime in the horn of Africa. Not to mention projects that are now being prepared or negotiated, which are part of a privileged bilateral cooperation between France and Spain on security issues.
CIVIPOL and FIIAPP have recently signed an agreement for a project in Senegal. What does this agreement involve? Why work with FIIAPP?
CIVIPOL wanted to collaborate with FIIAPP because this will allow the project to benefit from the knowledge of Spanish experts in internal security issues. The agreement lays down the legal conditions setting out the rules and financial conditions for this collaboration.
What is the aim of the project in Senegal?
The project should enable Senegal’s internal security services to have better equipment to fight terrorism and organised crime and to control and monitor its borders. The project will also help to improve internal security by improving the security of the general public and their property.
30 January 2017
Posteado en : Reportage
Eradicating poverty and hunger in the world, ending inequality and forming partnerships between countries for the common good are some of the goals established for a sustainable future.
In 2015, at the UN Sustainable Development Summit held in New York, 193 countries approved the agenda of goals for 2030. These new goals are the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). The United Nations defines sustainable development as “development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs”.
These goals are broader in scope than the eight Millennium Development Goals (MDG), signed in 2000, and involve more actors committed to eradicating poverty and fighting climate change.
On this occasion, the agenda calls for 17 goals to be achieved by 2030, including eradication of poverty and hunger in the world; elimination of gender disparity; caring for the planet as our only home by protecting the environment, biodiversity and combating climate change; and ensuring access to basic services like health care and education. A goal was also set that contemplates the creation of networks and partnerships between countries to work jointly to achieve the other goals.
EU commitment to the SDGs
The European Union has made a commitment to adopting the sustainable development goals and implementing them in Community legislation, prioritising its activities to address the three fundamental development pillars: economic, social and environmental.
It has also established, as one of the steps to be taken to achieve the 2030 agenda, the goal of creating a space for reflection on development with a longer-term perspective. Along these lines, it is also seeking to make the policies implemented in the European Union applicable beyond European borders by supporting third countries in the consolidation of peaceful, stable and resilient states.
The European Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development, Neven Mimica, expresses his commitment to achievement of the SDGs as follows: “I aim for a genuine consensus, under the shared ownership of EU Institutions and all Member States that will help us spearhead global action to implement the Sustainable Development Goals.”
FIIAPP in the 2030 Agenda
The International and Ibero-American Foundation for Administration and Public Policies (FIIAPP), as a public agency that manages international cooperation projects, works in accordance with the lines of action of European foreign policy.
Its work focuses on modernisation of the public institutions of the countries it works in through different areas. It has a direct relationship with the SDGs in the following ways:
– Social policies and rights: In this area, FIIAPP manages projects that contribute to the promotion and protection of basic social services like health care, education and employment. Here we find EUROsociAL, a programme to support social cohesion in Latin America through the exchange of experiences between experts on different subjects, such as justice, governance and public finance. This project contributes to the achievement of goal 16, “Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels”, and 17, “Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development”.
– Economy and public finance: In this area, FIIAPP implements projects to support countries in building sounder tax systems that will enable them to increase their national revenue, thereby strengthening the government. This is the objective of the Public Finance Modernization in Algeria project. These projects contribute to achievement of goal 17.1, “Strengthen domestic resource mobilization, including through international support to developing countries to improve domestic capacity for tax and other revenue collection”.
– Development and communication policies: In this area, FIIAPP focuses on supporting the governments of the countries where it works to improve the infrastructure, transport and construction sectors. Here we find the project FIIAPP is working on to support the railway system in Ukraine, which in its second phase aims to improve Ukraine’s rail transport system and adapt it to European regulations and standards. This project supports progress towards goal 11.2, “Provide access to safe, affordable, accessible and sustainable transport systems for all, improving road safety”.
– Green economy: The projects managed by FIIAPP in this area are governed by, among other regulations, the regulatory framework of the EU on climate and energy for 2030. This sector includes the Euroclima project to support climate change mitigation and adaptation policies designed to protect the environment in Latin America. This project is consistent with goal 13, “Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts”.
– Security and the fight against organised crime: In this aspect, FIIAPP works on projects to fight illegal immigration, human trafficking and drug trafficking. One example of this is the project to support drug legislation in Bolivia, in which Spanish security experts on drug issues work to train their Bolivian counterparts. The institutional support, in this sense, helps to achieve goal 16.4, “Significantly reduce illicit financial and arms flows, strengthen recovery and return of stolen assets, and combat all forms of organized crime”, and 16.11, “Strengthen relevant national institutions, including through international cooperation, for building capacity at all levels, in particular in developing countries, to prevent violence and combat terrorism and crime”.
– Justice and transparency: In this area, the projects managed by FIIAPP are focussed on fighting corruption and promoting transparency. Here we find the EUROMED Justice project, which aims to contribute to the development of an effective, efficient and democratic judicial system in the Euro-Mediterranean zone that will protect and respect human rights through regional cooperation (cooperation in which various countries in a region participate) in the areas of crime and access to justice. This project is consistent with goal 16, specifically with point 3, “Promote the rule of law at the national and international levels and ensure equal access to justice for all”.