Zim, Belarus in joint crime-busting deal

HOME Affairs minister, Obert Mpofu and his Belarus counterpart, Igor Schunevich yesterday signed a memorandum of agreement which would see police officers from the two countries conducting exchange programmes to strengthen their crime-busting skills.

By Nokuthaba Dlamini

Speaking at the signing ceremony in Victoria Falls, Schunevich said: “The main purpose of our visit is a signing of memorandum of combating crime between the Belarus’ Ministry of Internal Affairs and Home Affairs of Zimbabwe and this is the first step which allows us to improve our co-operation in combatting crime. I am convinced that every State must protect themselves from different kinds of threats including crime.”

Mpofu revealed that a team of local police officers would soon leave for Belarus as part of the exchange programme.

“The minister (Schunevich) has stated the purpose for memorandum of understanding and we have followed our discussion this morning and agreed that Zimbabwe will be sending some officers to Belarus to identify programmes where we need co-operation and there will be a crack force that will be sent for training on various areas in terms of expertise in the next few days not months to come,” he said.

“The minister has invited me to send teams to Belarus and we will be receiving teams from them as well look at our policing system and see how best they can develop and restructure and remodel our police services.

Mpofu said the training programmes would focus on busting human trafficking and terrorist activities, among others.

He said Belarus had a state-of-the-art police academy for training in handling riots.

“We have been invited to participate through consultancy as well as training by their government. They offered that to His Excellency [President Emmerson Mnangagwa] who has agreed and accepted this gesture. You know Belarus is a very developed country in terms of equipment, modern technology. They supply equipment for mining in this country. They have been doing a lot of cooperation in other areas of Information Communication and Technology.”

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