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This November, the Analyzing Organized Crime brief of the Global Initiative against Transnational Organized crime highlights a diverse series of criminal flows and their impacts on human security.

Following a growth in violence across Libya, but particularly in Tripoli, the nation’s capital, we explore the complex relationship between politics, militia violence, and illicit trafficking in Libya, and the impact that it will have on efforts towards state consolidation and transition to democratic governance.  This is part of our ongoing work examining the linkages between organised crime, state fragility, democracy and development.

Violence in North Africa, the Sahel and Syria are prompting a serious surge in illicit migration that lead to three tragedies that occurred this month – the drowning of over 300 migrants off the coast of Lampedusa in Italy; a further 15 a week later off the coast of Greece, and the discovery of 92 migrants found dead in the northern deserts towards the Libyan border, the majority of which were children.  We give an overview to the drivers of migration and explore how the smuggling of migrants can turn into the highly exploitative form of organized crime: human trafficking.

Another criminal trend on the rise is kidnapping for ransom.  Used in increasingly diverse ways, the practice of identifying high value, or easy access targets and shaking them down is becoming a prevalent crime in urban areas in many parts of the world.  It has also spawned a series of new and innovative iterations: virtual kidnapping, flash kidnapping, as well as the age old practice of kidnapping as a strategy of war.

Finally, following the arrest of the son of the President of Suriname on trafficking and terrorist charges, we look briefly at the growing number of cases where close relations of a head of state, or sometimes the head himself, is involved with transnational organized crime groups, and leveraging personal connections to facilitate and profit from criminal acts.

We hope you find our briefs interesting and useful.  You can download the Analyzing Organized Crime Briefs for August 2013September 2013 and October 2013 here.  We are grateful for any feedback on how to make future editions more so, and welcome those wishing to alert us to their TOC related publications and events so that we can feature them in future editions.  Please do email the Secretariat (secretariat@globalinitiative.net) with your comments and suggestions.

If you want more regular updates on TOC issues, please also check out the Global Initiative on Facebook where we post stories and items of interest regularly, as well as on Twitter where we are actively sharing events and resources as they happen.

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