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    Resolute Support Counter-corruption professionals discuss ACJC Progress

    KABUL, AFGHANISTAN

    07.07.2017

    Story by Sgt. 1st Class E. L. Craig 

    Resolute Support Headquarters

    KABUL, Afghanistan (July 7, 2017) – In any organization, meetings are regularly held to keep everyone on track towards common goals. Each week members of NATO’s Resolute Support and coalition nations discuss the progress of the Afghan Anti-corruption Criminal Justice Center in a meeting known as the “Stocktake”.

    The Stocktake concept originated in 2016 as the planning meeting for creating the ACJC. The weekly event has continued and currently serves to keep stakeholders informed of improvements the ACJC is making or needs to make.

    “It remains an important forum for donors, mentors, and concerned organizations to monitor the ACJC’s progress since its opening last October, and to oversee more generally the fight against corruption,” said US Army Col. John Siemietkowski, director of Counter-Corruption for Combined Security Transition Command – Afghanistan.

    Since many members of the NATO coalition have made large contributions to the ACJC’s development, this meeting allows them to observe how their money supports the counter-corruption mission in Afghanistan.

    “It’s US, United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan, EU, British,
    Danish and various other nationalities coming together to create consensus. It’s a vanguard of the international community’s efforts in regards to the ACJC. It’s about coordination, ensuring we don’t overlap or duplicate efforts, and ensuring we’re coherent in our approach to fighting corruption,” International Prosecutorial Advisor to the ACJC David Frend said.

    As the members of this meeting identify an issue in the fight against corruption and agree on a recommended course of action, they bring that information to their respective organization leaders, who in turn engage their Afghan counter-parts with the issue and recommended solution.

    “For instance, the international community has raised concerns at very high levels of a rumored Presidential Pardon Decree. Recognizing its potential impact on ACJC corruption sentences, the Stocktake group was able to convey these concerns to our GIROA friends, all the while respecting Afghan sovereignty. Subsequently, our Afghan partners addressed these concerns in the Decree’s issuance language.” ” Siemietkowski said.

    The efforts of the group’s members are tangible on the citizen level as well. One group member pointed out that the Afghan government and local communities can benefit from counter corruption measures like criminal asset recovery.

    “The courts can designate criminal asset money to go back into the fight against organized crime and it can go back in to the communities that need them most, for whatever projects the local ministries decide on,” said Russell Thomas, National Crime Agency’s Anti-Money Laundering and Criminal Assets Tracing Mentor.

    This group has the support of NATO, Resolute Support, the UN, EU, and many Coalition nations.

    “President Ghani, RS Commander General Nicholson, and many other senior leaders recognize corruption as a cancer that kills Afghan society from within,” Siemietkowski said.

    Today’s international Stocktake represents tangible proof of the Coalition’s collective efforts to fight this cancer, and tangible proof of successful results.

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    NEWS INFO

    Date Taken: 07.07.2017
    Date Posted: 07.09.2017 05:56
    Story ID: 240492
    Location: KABUL, AF 

    Web Views: 41
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