The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime’s Country Office Pakistan (COPAK) and Terrorism Prevention Branch (TPB), the Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate (CTED), the International Association of Prosecutors (IAP) and the National Counter Terrorism Authority (NACTA-Pakistan) organized a National Workshop on Obtaining Electronic Evidence from Private Communications Service Providers (CSPs) in Counter-Terrorism and related organized crime cross-border investigations from 25 to 27 June 2019 in Islamabad, Pakistan. This was the first national activity organized within the framework of the CTED/IAP/United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) Global Initiative on “Strengthening the capacity of Central Authorities, prosecutors and investigators in preserving and obtaining electronic evidence in counter-terrorism and related organized crime cross-border investigations.” Pakistan participated in the two regional workshops for South Asia and Southeast Asia, held in Malaysia in November 2018 and in Australia in March 2019, where representatives from the States in the region were introduced to the Global Initiative and the “Practical Guide for Requesting Electronic Evidence Across Borders”.
The workshop’s program built on the dialogue with Pakistan during the regional workshops, focusing on the main challenges to preserve and obtain digital evidence in a timely manner and the need for enhanced national coordination and international cooperation. The meeting was attended by representatives from the Government of Pakistan, including from the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Interior, the Federal Investigation Agency, Pakistan Telecommunication Authority and Provincial Counter Terrorism Departments. Participating experts included representatives from the US Department of Justice, Facebook, the US District Court, the FBI and the Middlebury Institute.
CTED looks forward to continuing its cooperation with the Government of Pakistan including their participation in the upcoming regional workshop for South Asian states in October hosted by the Maldives from 1 – 3 October 2019.