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SC-hosted INTERPOL conference set to help realise 2022 security goals

The Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy (SC) has taken another step towards strengthening international collaboration in the field of safety and security provision for key sporting events, including the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar™, by hosting a three-day conference with an INTERPOL-led security initiative.

INTERPOL is the world's largest police organisation, with 190 member nations. In 2012, it established Project Stadia, which is supported by the State of Qatar, to contribute to security arrangements for the 2022 FIFA World Cup™ – and to leave a lasting legacy for the world's law enforcement community.

SC-hosted INTERPOL conference

This week's conference – the second in Project Stadia's annual series on the themes of legislation, cyber and physical security – carried forward the research, analysis and discussions from the inaugural conference in 2015, which was also held in Doha. It brought together personnel from law enforcement, event organising committees, government, the private sector, academia and civil society.

The SC's Executive Director of Security, Mohammed Al Sulaiti, said that the meetings helped realise the objective of strengthening international cooperation to make mega sporting events an enjoyable and safe experience for the global public.

"Our presence here is simply a reflection of our shared belief in strengthening international security cooperation at a time when regional and global conflict is increasing and security threats that can cross borders and continents are growing," said Al Sulaiti.

"The security risk which accompanies an event of great magnitude is one of the most prominent challenges which host nations work to overcome. It needs more than the efforts of a country and its security forces."

The SC's Deputy Executive Director of Security, Captain Ali Mohammed Al Ali, pointed out that Qatar has productively used the six years since winning the bid in 2010 to study the security experiences of host nations of various sporting events. "Delegates from Qatar were present at the monitoring and observation programme at the 2014 FIFA World Cup, Euro 2016, and at other sporting events," he said. "We have gained access to international expertise in the field of sports security and have benefitted from case studies of other host nations."

Addressing the gathering Senior Manager of Project Stadia Captain Falah Abdullah Al-Dosari said: "The conference is a platform for INTERPOL's Project Stadia to help guide law enforcement worldwide to deliver excellence in major event security. It was very encouraging to see participation from different continents and regions such as North and South America, Europe, East Asia and the Middle East, and I believe this has enabled us to reach the outcome we set out for. The conference focused on important issues to do with planning for major sporting events and the roles, responsibilities and command structures attached to them."

SC-hosted INTERPOL conference

With Qatar hosting Asia's second ever FIFA World Cup™, attendees from China and Singapore told that safety and security in Qatar would be a crucial element for their football fans.

"Qatar's preparation for the World Cup has been amazing so far, with the country's willingness to deploy its resources for security provision and ramping up infrastructure from a very early stage a shining example for other countries, including Singapore," said Wee Li Tay, Assistant Director of Operations, major security events division of the Singapore Police Force.

"Singapore and Qatar share many similarities and have close people-to-people ties," said Tay, who played a leading role in the Southeast Asian Games of 2015 and the Youth Olympic Games of 2010, which were both hosted by Singapore.

"Qatar must continue its good work in border protection and send out positive messaging regarding this. The football fans of Singapore are already confident that Qatar will host a family-oriented World Cup."

SC-hosted INTERPOL conference

Cheng Hong, deputy director of the Major Event Safety and Security Division of China's Ministry of Public Security, praised the conference for its valuable contributions to research and analysis. He said: "The most significant aspect of the conference for me was the in-depth discussion on the various models of security provision surrounding major events. China currently follows a government-regulated model but is looking to switch to an alternative one which gives stadium operators and event owners more control."

Hong, who was instrumental in security arrangements for the Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic Games, concluded that there is a public perception in his country that Qatar will be a safe place to visit during the 2022 FIFA World Cup™.