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INTERPOL-IOC webinars engage NOCs across the globe

30 Nov 2020
A series of five regional webinars on the prevention of competition manipulation, which took place between July and November, reached more than 800 representatives from a total of 57 National Olympic Committees (NOCs), public authorities and law enforcement bodies.

Organised jointly by the IOC and INTERPOL and in collaboration with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), the webinars invited participants from the Pacific, Baltic, Mediterranean, Southern African and Eastern African regions to assess the scope and risks of competition manipulation. The participants also discussed the role of regulation, legislation and cooperation frameworks through a number of best practices from their respective territories. The sessions, held virtually due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, encouraged cooperation at national and regional level, clarified roles and responsibilities in this field, and provided useful guidance on how to conduct effective criminal investigations.

Gearing up for Tokyo 2020

These educational webinars are a concrete outcome of the reframed cooperation agreement between the IOC and INTERPOL in the lead-up to the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 and in response to the COVID-19 outbreak.

“Thanks to the IOC, INTERPOL and the UNODC, this webinar provided the NOCs of the Pacific region with the opportunity to find out more about the risks of competition manipulation,” said Makarita Lenoa, President of the Fiji NOC, after the first webinar. “We discussed the actions that our NOCs have to take in the fields of regulation, awareness-raising and intelligence, and the importance of forming national cooperation between sport, state authorities and law enforcement officials in our countries. We now look forward to implementing what we learnt in coordination with the Olympic Movement Unit on the Prevention of the Manipulation of Competitions.”

Agnė Vanagienė, the contact point for the prevention of competition manipulation in the Lithuanian NOC, stated after her participation in the webinar for the Baltic region: “The IOC-INTERPOL-UNODC webinar for the Baltic region was very informative and helped us further understand key matters in the field of competition manipulation, but also how different key stakeholders in each country (sport, state and law enforcement) can work together to fight this significant threat. The webinar was well adjusted to the level of awareness in our region. Following up on the webinar, our NOC adopted the Olympic Movement Code on the Prevention of the Manipulation of Competitions, and we are also planning awareness-raising activities.”

The third webinar, aimed at a number of NOCs in the Mediterranean region, focused on the creation of a national platform (national cooperation framework) with close coordination between law enforcement and organised sport.

The fourth webinar was held in early October for 16 NOCs from Southern Africa, and the fifth seminar in mid-November brought together 12 NOCs from Eastern Africa. In December and January, more seminars will be organised for NOCs from Central, Northern and Western Africa, both in English and in French. This means that all African NOCs will have been trained by the end of January. 

In each region, specific partners, such as International Federations and Continental Associations, supported the webinars and shared their expertise in this important field.

This series of webinars will continue in the run-up to Tokyo 2020 in order to reach as many NOCs as possible ahead of the Games. NOCs must play a key role in tackling competition manipulation in their country and in raising awareness of the issue among their athletes and Games delegation members.

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