The European Union and Africa Trade in Wildlife Information eXchange's (EU-TWIX and AFRICA-TWIX) are online tools developed to facilitate information exchange and international co-peration between law enforcement agencies across Europe and Central Africa.
An ongoing challenge facing law enforcement is ensuring smooth and timely communication between nations when dealing with transnational wildlife smuggling networks. The TWIX online platform is an online tool available to enforcement and management officials responsible for the implementation of international wildlife trade and CITES regulations, helping connect officials across borders and allow them to rapidly share information and expertise.
Facilitating regular communication between international enforcement agencies has proven highly effective in helping to disrupt transnational smuggling networksVinciane Sacré, EU-TWIX Project Manager
There are currently two TWIX platforms in operation, EU-TWIX and AFRICA-TWIX. A third iteration for the Southern African Development Community (SADC) is currently in development.
Each platform consists of two main components; a centralised website which holds records on national, regional and international wildlife seizures, and a mailing list which allows enforcement officals to communicate, seek assistance and alert one another about relevant enforcement actions.
TWIX websites also contain various resources such as identification guides, training materials and useful directories including listings for animal rescue centres for seized specimens
National law enforcement agencies in the European Union (EU) play a crucial role in the efficient enforcement of EU Wildlife Trade Regulations through the efforts of Customs, police and other inspection services in combating illegal wildlife trade into and from the EU, as well as within the single market of its 28 Member States.
The EU-TWIX was the first wildlife trade information exchange to be launched by TRAFFIC.Currently, officials from all EU Member States and seven neighbouring countries participate in the platform, with over 1,000 enforcement officials connected and a database which holds information on over 60,000 wildlife seizures. The EU is one of the largest and most diverse markets for wildlife and wildlife products, making co-operation between EU Member States and neighbouring countries essential in the fight against illegal wildlife trade.
We would like to express our sincere thanks to the European Commission and the following governments for their generous support towards EU-TWIX.
The success of EU-TWIX largely depends on the regular input of information relating to new seizures and offences by national law enforcement agencies.
Given that the success of international efforts to detect and prosecute wildlife trafficking largely depends on the efficiency of these enforcement agencies, strengthening mechanisms by which enforcement officers can exchange information and advice is thus an invaluable means of combating wildlife crime. Find out more about our success and approaches in this Analysis of EU-TWIX seizure data for the period 2007-2011 and in the EU-TWIX information brochure.
AFRICA-TWIX has already proven to be instrumental in facilitating international co-operation between law enforcement agencies, in certain cases helping to trigger investigations leading to the arrests and prosecutions of traffickers.
Africa is a continent of major concern with regards to the sourcing of illegal wildlife products. Consumer demand for illicit wildlife is driving the highest rate of poaching levels ever seen, making connecting enforcement officials within the continent, and beyond, with one another essential. AFRICA-TWIX enables more than just connectivity, it also provides officers with the latest resources and identification guides to assist them with wildlife enforcement related cases.
We would like to express our sincere thanks to the following organisations for their generous support towards AFRICA-TWIX.
Countries participating are currently limited to Central Africa, and include Cameroon, Gabon, Republic of Congo, Democratic Republic of Congo and Central African Republic. Over 110 officials are connected and the database currently holds more than 200 records concerning wildlife enforcement.
View or download our project leaflet to find out more about key successes, how to join and how it all works.
explore the latest successes and materials related to the Trade in Wildlife Information eXchanges
The EU-TWIX and AFRICA-TWIX platforms are available to use right now.
Eligibe parties must be operating within the EU Member States and neighbouring countries or within one of the five Central African nations mentioned above within one of the following roles: Customs, CITES Management Authorities, wildlife and forestry services, police, prosecutors, criminal justice departments or international organisations such as EUROPOL, INTERPOL or the World Customs Organization.
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