IDSF 2022 – Speaker Profile

Rocco Messina

Rocco Messina is currently heading the Border Security and Management Unit at the United Nations Counter-Terrorism Centre (UNCCT) within the United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism (UNOCT). In this tenure, he is managing a multi-year global programme mandated to support the inclusion of the counter-terrorism elements in the UN Member States’ border security strategies through technical assistance and capacity-building activities. Prior to this appointment, from 2011 to 2017, Mr Messina served as Head of the Border Management Section at the United Nations Department of Peace Keeping Operations (DPKO) United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH) managing a portfolio to design and implement a comprehensive Haitian national border policy. His leadership and expertise were instrumental to the creation of the Haitian Technical Border Commission, the Customs Police, as well as a specialized branch of the Haitian National Police in charge of securing the land borders. Mr Messina started his professional career in 1990 after a two-year military police academy training with the Counter-terrorism branch of the Italian Guardia di Finanza (Italian Military Police). During his 25-year long career, he was deployed to several field missions, at both national and international levels, focusing mainly on counter-terrorism and border security matters. He was bestowed with several national and international awards for the successful completion of highly hazardous duties. Between September 2006 and May 2007, Mr Messina was deployed in Herat Afghanistan with NATO’s International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) Mission as Training Programme Officer, where he developed a training programme for the Afghan Border Police. Mr Messina holds a master’s degree in literature and a degree in international law and he speaks fluently Italian, English, Spanish and French.

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