International Deployment Group

The Australian Federal Police (AFP) International Deployment Group (IDG) was formally established in February 2004 and provides the Australian Government with a standing capacity to deploy Australian police domestically and internationally to contribute to stability and security operations, United Nations (UN) Missions and Capacity Development Missions.

The International Deployment Group has three core components:

  • Australian based members - providing executive, planning, administrative, intelligence, training and technical support for deployed personnel and strategic advice to the AFP Executive
  • Mission component members - providing a blend of sworn and unsworn personnel deployed to, or ready to deploy to, overseas missions and other operations as required
  • Specialist Response Group - providing ready response, highly-skilled tactical and specialist policing capability for rapid deployment to domestic and international operational situations.

The IDG contributes to the development, maintenance or restoration of the rule of law in countries that seek Australia's support.

Strong partnerships with other key Commonwealth agencies, state and territory police services, international organisations and the private sector remain critical to the effective delivery of IDG business.

Another important component of the IDG’s business delivery model is the IDG Gender Strategy which formalises the AFP’s commitment to gender equality and support for women in the countries the IDG is deployed to.  The Strategy will guide IDG business for a four year period from 2014-2018.  The Strategy highlights key issues confronting women working in the law and justice sector, such as low recruitment numbers, lack of opportunity for promotion and limited-participation in management and decision making. Additionally, the Strategy calls for an increase in the number of women in police development and stability operations, a clearer understanding of the role of women in law enforcement and peace building, and the delivery of gender-sensitive policing and appropriate responses to gender-based violence in partner countries.

Currently the IDG manages approximately 400 members deployed to the United Nations Mission in Cyprus and international missions in Timor-Leste, Papua New Guinea, Nauru, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Samoa and Tonga.

The IDG also manages community policing in Australia's external territories of Christmas Island, Cocos (Keeling) Islands, Norfolk Island and Jervis Bay.

Further information on current AFP IDG missions is provided below:

Solomon Islands

The Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands (RAMSI) commenced in 2003 in a response to a request from the Solomon Islands Government, after a significant breakdown in law and order. RAMSI's initial mandate was to restore law and order and by 2004 the security situation had stabilised.

Today the Participating Police Force (PPF) component of RAMSI is focused on enhancing the skills and capabilities of the Royal Solomon Islands Police Force (RSIPF). The aim of producing an independent force capable of maintaining law and order is based on a model of policing that is appropriate and affordable for the Solomon Islands. The PPF is compiled of sworn and unsworn AFP members, along with members from New Zealand and other Pacific Island nations.

Timor-Leste

Commencing in July 2004, the Timor Leste Police Development Program (TLPDP) is a bilateral capacity building program of assistance to the Policia Nacional de Timor-Leste through an agreement between the Government of Timor-Leste and the Government of Australia. The objectives of the TLPDP are to assist the Government of Republica Democratica de Timor-Leste to build the foundations of an effective and accountable police service. The program focuses on the provision of advice, training, infrastructure and enabling tools. The TLPDP comprises sworn AFP Police Officers, unsworn AFP staff, civilian specialists and locally employed staff.

Nauru

The Nauru Police Force Police Capacity Program (NPFPCP) is a bilateral program that was established under a Memorandum of Understanding between Australia and Nauru in November 2004. The focus of the NPFPCP has been to develop and implement the foundations necessary for a professional, contemporary and competent policing organisation assisted by the development of governance instruments and systems, training and the provision of necessary physical resources.

Samoa

The Samoa Australia Police Partnership (SAPP) commenced in 2009 and is currently a component of the Pacific Police Development Program (PPDP), which is an Australian government initiative supporting a broad range of bilateral and multi-country police capacity development initiatives throughout the Pacific region. The program is focused on strengthening core policing functions, organisational leadership, management and corporate support within the Samoan Police Service.

Tonga

The Tonga Police Development Program (TPDP) is a partnership between the Government of Tonga, Australia and New Zealand initiated in 2007 to support the development of the Tonga Police capacity and capability. The program’s overarching goal is to achieve ‘a trusted and respected policing service that works in partnership to reduce crime and build safe and secure communities’.

The AFP has deployed Police Advisors in Tonga since the commencement of the program. These advisors work alongside New Zealand Police Advisors to implement the TPDP, in particular systems to support enhancing policing skills and operational functionality of Tonga Police and development of leadership.  The current phase of assistance is focused on four key output areas that are aligned with the Tonga Police Corporate Plan:

  • Infrastructure necessary to support efficient policing.
  • Core policing skills and systems.
  • Leadership and organisational development.
  • Community engagement.

The AFP's contribution to the TPDP directly supports the Australian aid program's objective of helping people overcome poverty by promoting safety and security through improved operational effectiveness of Pacific police.

Vanuatu

In 2001, Government of Vanuatu requested assistance from the Australian government to improve the capabilities of the Vanuatu Police Force (VPF). Work commenced the following year and continued in varying capacity up until February 2011 when the Vanuatu Australia Police Project (VAPP) was formed. The VAPP is fully funded by GoA Official Development Assistance funds through AusAID, and utilises the technical expertise from the AFP, in the form of Advisors. The VAPP continues its support for law enforcement capacity building initiatives, focusing on the recruit training and professionalism of the VPF, infrastructure, workforce renewal and improvement to internal governance.

Papua New Guinea

The Papua New Guinea- Australian Policing Partnership commenced in 2008.  At that time, the AFP deployed 17 officers to Port Moresby, working within Bomana Police College, Internal Affairs Directorate, Fraud and Anti-Corruption Directorate and the Office of Reform.

In 2013, the AFP expanded the Mission by 50 frontline police officers following the agreement between Prime Ministers Rudd and O’Neill.  That agreement included a small group of AFP officers to Lae.

The agreement between Papua New Guinea and Australia highlights the requirement for highly visible policing activities. AFP officers work at local police stations in Port Moresby and Lae and undertake a range of duties in support of the Royal Papua New Guinea Constabulary (RPNGC), principally front office enquiries, custody management, and station management.

The Mission currently has 73 members comprising of 13 members in Lae and 60 members in Port Moresby.

Cyprus

United Nations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP) is one of the longest-running UN Peacekeeping missions. It was established in 1964 to prevent further fighting between the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities on the island.

Since a de facto ceasefire in August 1974, UNFICYP has supervised the ceasefire lines; provided humanitarian assistance and maintained a buffer zone. The ceasefire lines extend over 180 kilometres across the island.

Pacific Police Development Program – Regional (PPDPR)

The Pacific Police Development Program (PPDP) is an Australian Government initiative supporting a broad range of police development activities throughout the Pacific region. The program works with police in Pacific nations on improving the rule of law as a prerequisite for economic, social and political development of the region. The program is operating a regional component, as well as country-specific bi-lateral programs in Vanuatu, Samoa, Tonga, Papua New Guinea and Nauru.

The PPDPR provides a range of services bilaterally to AFP missions as well as direct in-country support to Kiribati, Niue, Tuvalu, the Republic of Marshall Islands, Palau, Cook Islands and the Federated States of Micronesia. PPDPR projects are delivered under six interrelated program components: Strategic Partnerships; Leadership & Management; Learning & Development; Corporate Service Reform; Legal Frameworks; and Gender.

PPDPR is an integral part of the IDG and promotes the safety and security of Pacific Islands communities through effective operational policing under the motto ‘for Pacific by Pacific’.

External Territories

The AFP provides community policing services to the Australian External Territories of Christmas Island, Norfolk Island, the Cocos (Keeling) Islands and Jervis Bay. AFP members at these locations perform a variety of policing and related functions. These include: Australian customs; border protection and immigration functions; responsibilities for land and maritime search and rescue operations and coordination.

Contact IDG

International Deployment Group Ph: (02) 6256 7777
Email IDG