Counter-terrorism: 10 years of Security Council resolution 1373

The Counter-Terrorism Committee of the Security Council marks today the tenth anniversary of the adoption of resolution 1373 with a special meeting at UN Headquarters in New York. During the meeting, Member States, UN entities and other international and regional organizations will examine progress achieved so far in implementing the resolution and share views on future activities of the Committee.

Adopted on the heels of the 2001 attacks on the United States, resolution 1373 has chartered the way forward in the fight against terrorism. “The horrific events of 9/11 brought home its devastating consequences and changed the world profoundly,” said Hardeep Singh Puri, Permanent Representative of India to the United Nations and Chair of the Counter-Terrorism Committee. Ambassador Puri said terrorism is now “truly globalized” and “terrorists are waging asymmetric warfare.”

In its resolution 1373, a strong and far-reaching document, the Security Council requires all States to take a series of measures to counter terrorism. These include securing borders, tightening financial controls and cooperating with other countries to ensure terrorists are brought to justice. The Council also created the Counter-Terrorism Committee to monitor the implementation of those measures. Since 2005, the Committee has been assisted in its work by its Executive Directorate, CTED.

In the past decade, much progress has been made in preventing and combating terrorism.
Improvements relate to international cooperation, police and intelligence work, monitoring of financial transactions, the rate of ratification of relevant international treaties and other areas. However, more can be done at the national, regional and international levels to adapt to an evolving threat. “Tackling terrorism is a challenge even for countries that are richly endowed with resources and skilled personnel,” said Mike Smith, head of CTED. All countries are facing what members of the Security Council have called “one of the most serious threats to peace and security”.

That is why the United Nations is providing guidance and support to States. Several UN bodies and entities are contributing to the Organization’s counter-terrorism efforts. Working closely with bilateral and multilateral agencies, CTED, for example, facilitates technical assistance and capacity-building. It is also involved in helping States improve national coordination and international cooperation, the cornerstones of effective counter-terrorism strategies.

Looking back, there is reason to be hopeful about the future. “When I consider what we have already achieved, I am optimistic about what we can accomplish together as nations and people of the world in the next decade,” said Mr. Smith. “Working as one, we can significantly reduce the number of attacks and victims and, hopefully, one day eliminate the terrorist threat completely.”

This page was last updated on: 27-Sep-2011 3:36 PM EST