Press Release

New Publication from International IDEA, NIMD and the Clingendael Institute Focuses on the Nexus Between Organized Crime and Politics in Latin America

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NEW YORK — The International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (International IDEA), the Netherlands Institute for Multiparty Democracy (NIMD) and the Netherlands Institute of International Relations (Clingendael) today will conduct a book discussion about a publication that provides insights into the world of organized crime in Latin America and how these networks corrode democratic politics across the region.

The Permanent Observer for International IDEA to the UN, Massimo Tommasoli, and NIMD Director of Programmes, Pepijn Gerrits, will present the publication at the United Nations headquarters and discuss its implications for the post-2015 development agenda. The event will be opened by Oscar Fernandez Taranco, UN Assistant Secretary General for Peacebuilding Support. A webcast of the event will be available through the UN Web TV site

The book “Illicit Networks and Politics in Latin America” (available in Spanish) provides a first-of-its-kind, evidence-based analysis of the incentives behind the corrupt relations between criminals and politicians. The three organizations joined forces in 2012 to document a series of case studies that illustrate these relations, coupled with an analysis of the various tools used to prevent, mitigate and prosecute these corrupt relationships. Renowned local researchers in Colombia, Peru, Ecuador, Guatemala and Honduras supported the detailed research process reflected in the book.

The publication also discusses the historical evolution of the nexus between politics, crime and the economy in Latin America, connecting the past and current trends observed throughout the region. This empirical analysis provides the basis for the comparative legal analysis that the authors provide in the last chapters, exploring the main instruments that seek to attack the potential relations between criminals and politicians.


The International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (International IDEA) is an intergovernmental organization with a mission to support sustainable democracy worldwide. The objectives of the Institute are to support stronger democratic institutions and processes, and more sustainable, effective and legitimate democracy. International IDEA is the facilitator of the Inter-Regional Dialogue on Democracy, which is a leading platform for democracy for Regional Organizations.

The Netherlands Institute for Multiparty Democracy (NIMD) is a democracy assistance organization established by political parties in the Netherlands to support political parties in young democracies. NIMD specifically provides assistance to processes of dialogue between political parties in programme countries, the institutional development of parliamentary parties and networks of cooperation between political and civil society. It adheres to strict principles of ownership, impartiality and transparency and acknowledges that democracies are home grown. NIMD has provided support to political parties and democratic institutions in context-specific ways and on the request of its partners in in countries such as Bolivia, Ecuador, Guatemala, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe. More information can be found on its website:

Founded in 1983, the Netherlands Institute of International Relations ‘Clingendael’ is the leading Dutch think tank and diplomatic academy on international affairs. The institute provides public and private sector organisations with in-depth analysis of global developments in the fields of international security, conflict management and organized crime, and features a number of specialist departments such as the Conflict Research Unit. Clingendael is an independent institute, and as such is not affiliated with any political, social, or religious movement. As a neutral platform, the Institute is the ideal location for conferences and round tables, with the primary objective of enhancing the public debate on international affairs.