Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Counter terrorism measures at the top of RGP Priorities

Tackling the threat of terrorism will top the list of priorities of the Royal Gibraltar Police (RGP) during the coming year 2005/6Tackling the threat of terrorism will top the list of priorities of the Royal Gibraltar Police (RGP) during the coming year.

In its Policing Plan 2005-2006, the RGP highlighted the need to concentrate resources on counter-terrorism measures and appropriate response plans in response to the heightened worldwide risk of attack by extremist groups.

Much of the focus will be on developing existing partnerships with other security agencies, both in Gibraltar and in other countries so as to tap into the broader global intelligence picture.

The RGP will also continue with its public awareness campaign to reassure the community and put the threat of terrorism into context without generating unnecessary alarm.

“Whenever I talk to people in Gibraltar I am continually impressed by the feeling of safety,” writes RGP Commissioner Joe Ullger in his foreword to the plan.

“However we must not become complacent.

We must remain vigilant and aware of the serious and continuing threat we face from terrorism.

We have therefore decided to retain counter terrorism measures as a prime objective in our strategic and policing plans.

It is the genuine desire of all within the service that we want our people to live in a community that is safe, and for them to feel safe.”

The RGP said that countering the threat of terrorism was an issue of critical importance, not just to the police but also to the community as a whole. A key element of this, alongside working with members of the public and strengthening inter-agency partnerships, is adopting a high-profile approach to policing that ensures officers are both visible and accessible.

“Nowhere is this more important than our continued vigilance towards the security of our jurisdiction,” Commissioner Ullger wrote in the Annual Report 2004-2005, which was released alongside the policing plan.

“In today’s volatile and continued terrorist threat, we as an organisation together with the community must work together to pre-empt and disrupt any threat to ensure the safety of our citizens.”

The policing plan for the coming year will also focus attention on four key themes including solid intelligence gathering to tackle major crime, a pro-active approach to policing by the RGP’s officers, the continued fostering of close partnerships with the community and ‘problem oriented policing’ which aims to tackle problems by identifying its root causes.

Other key priorities include reducing the incidence of antisocial behaviour and vandalism, alongside offences that most concern the public such as drugs, burglaries, violence and offensive weapons, and vehicle crime.

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