Interpol held an Asian Regional Workshop on Preventing Bioterrorism this week in Singapore, the latest in a series of Interpol meetings on the topic of bioterrorism. From a news report on the meeting:
Police forces around the world are beginning to recognise bioterrorism as a serious threat despite sceptics who doubt that preventive measures are needed, the head of Interpol said in Singapore today.
Ronald Noble, secretary-general of the international police agency, warned of the danger of biological weapons during a workshop for police and other officials from across Asia.
Experts say a bioterrorist attack could be difficult to immediately detect and germs could be carried unnoticed by infected victims across continents.
â€œSome people still question whether the threat of bioterrorism is real, they question whether it is truly necessary to prepare for it. I have no doubt that the threat is real,â€ Noble said.
â€œIf we have the chance to take measures to protect the citizens of our nations, to help reduce the chances of our countries of becoming a target, then we have a duty to do so,â€ he said.
â€œPolice around the world are now also beginning to recognise and respond to this threat.â€
Interpol’s engagement on the issue of bioterrorism seems like an appropriate and forward-leaning response to this threat, given the likely global impacts of a bioterror- or agroterror-related outbreak or pandemic. This is another indicator that Interpol is quietly playing a very important role in global counterterrorism and homeland security efforts.