PRESS RELEASE INTERPORTPOLICE and AIRPOL gather for joint international airport community security and counterterrorism working group


New York City - INTERPORTPOLICE and AIRPOL met recently at the World Trade Center in New York City to conduct international joint airport police security and counterterrorism working group. The meeting was conducted in cooperation with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey Police Department.  The working group explored key issues and concerns affecting today’s airport environments including:

  • Threats related to mass evacuation and active shooter,
  • False incident reports,
  • The importance of collaborative communication,
  • Cyber, insider threats, intelligence
  • Mass events and organized demonstrations . 

“Airport security needs to be addressed in a holistic manner,” advised Director Jay Grant, secretary general, INTERPORTPOLICE. “For a safer environment, we must look at the airport community as a whole when preventing, protecting and preparing the many facets of securing an airport. Our goal is to bring forth relevant issues and respond in a timely manner by offering expert advisories, study reports and operational practices to address these various threats.  Even though compliance requirements may be different for the various jurisdictions, our risk mitigation efforts need to be in parallel.  Police must work to ensure the best possible risk mitigation methods are in place for the protection of public safety, critical infrastructure and the supply chain.”

Commissioner Peter Nilsson, project manager, European Union AIRPOL stated, “Collaboration is essential, from the basics of working together internationally to discussing issues of emerging technology. We see collective cooperation in airport policing as a local, national and international process.  This means our all aspects of our counterterrorism protocols, from everyday prevention to crisis incident practices, should be in sync with one other.  We must address these issues together, encouraging communication among stakeholders who have various responsibilities within the airport environment.  If we work separately, we are not as secure.”

NYNJ Port Authority Police Chief of Counterterrorism Steven Rotolo stated, “Our organization is committed to safer and secure airports.  We take every effort continually adapt. We know taking an aggressive stance in counterterrorism is paramount to effective security.  We are pleased to assist and stand beside our domestic and international partners to address these important issues. We look forward the continued efforts of working together.”

Issues discussed at the working roundtable meetings included outcomes and lessons learned about mass evacuation and false incidents related to active shootings by organized and lone actor events, insider threats, cyber threats and collaborative communication. Communication was cited as one of the weak links in operational and emergency incident management.  This is especially true when multi-agency responders and an entire environment’s personnel need to be included. 

As a result of the initial working roundtable, participants agreed to continue the discussion, advise and provide operational practices on identified issues.  Over time, other stakeholders will be included in the work group.  The next group meeting will be held in Europe in August 2017. 

The initial international airport community police working group includes departments from Amsterdam, Atlanta, Copenhagen, Dallas – Fort Worth, Fort Lauderdale, London, Los Angeles, Madrid, Miami, New York, Paris, Seattle, Vancouver B.C. and Washington D.C.


The INTERPORTPOLICE - International Airport and Seaport Police Authorities is a chartered organization established in 1969 by police authorities to facilitate global cooperation addressing terrorism and transnational crime within the transportation security and border sector.  Working as a global team to assist authorities with counterterrorism evidence based strategies, operational evaluations, and training transportation security force members for the protection of public safety, critical infrastructure and mass event venues. Under the leadership of Director Jay Grant, who became the 5th Secretary General in 2010, the organization has expanded MOUs and cooperative efforts to include consultative status with the United Nations’ International Maritime Organization, Organization of American States, Project Griffin International working with the United Kingdom, and the Morrone 9/11 Center for Counterterrorism and Security, a global outreach counterterrorism train-the-trainer and 9/11 Medal recognition program. Website:

AIRPOL -  is a coordinating body of law enforcement units within the European airports offering proven value to the ever-growing importance of European and international law enforcement cooperation in the airport and aviation sector.  Established in 2010, the initial initiatives were taken to set up such a network of law enforcement agencies of police and border guards within the forum.  Open discussions with stakeholders lead to the Belgian EU-Presidency offering the opportunity to lay the foundation of the AIRPOL Project. A EU-resolution recognizing and supporting the AIRPOL Network was the concrete outcome.  In March 2016 project management was transferred from Belgium Police to the Swedish Police under the leadership of Commissioner Peter Nilsson.  Website:


With the financial support of the Prevention of and Fight against Crime Programme.
European Commission - Directorate-General Home Affairs.


AIRPOL aims at enhancing the overall security at the European airports and in the civil aviation domain.

AIRPOL wants to create a lasting added value in the prevention of and the fight against crime in the European aviation sector.

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