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Counter-Terrorism Implementation Task Force

Working Group on Strengthening the Protection of Vulnerable Targets



United Nations Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy:

Section III, paragraph 13: “To encourage the United Nations to work with Member States and relevant international, regional and subregional organizations to identify and share best practices to prevent terrorist attacks on particularly vulnerable targets. We invite the International Criminal Police Organization to work with the Secretary-General so that he can submit proposals to this effect. We also recognize the importance of developing public-private partnerships in this area.”


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The CTITF Working Group on Strengthening the Protection of Vulnerable Targets aims to establish appropriate mechanisms to facilitate the sharing and development of best practices in this area. A Referral Centre was established at INTERPOL’s Headquarters in Lyon, France, to facilitate the exchange of knowledge, resources, experts, technical assistance and best practices to protect vulnerable targets among States. During the centre’s operation for almost two years, 134 States have contributed input. Upon request, INTERPOL assists States seeking to develop or enhance protection strategies by obtaining assistance from among the network of experts/resources identified through the centre.

INTERPOL has used its National Central Bureaus and Regional Bureaus to identify, obtain and compile best practices as well as contact information for the responsible ministry units, relevant experts and resources in member countries where vulnerable target protection strategies are being or have been implemented. Upon request, INTERPOL will assist member countries seeking either to develop protection strategies or enhance established strategies by securing suitable assistance from among the network of experts/resources identified through the Referral Centre. Recognizing the importance of enhancing the attentiveness of member countries to this initiative, INTERPOL has undertaken an awareness campaign to highlight the work being done through the Referral Centre. As more countries become familiar with the resources available through the Referral Centre, new initiatives will be undertaken to make best use of the information collected and compiled by INTERPOL.

As part of its initiative to increase cooperation between the public and private sectors in the field of vulnerable target protection, the United Nations Interregional Crime and Justice Research Institute (UNICRI) published in January 2009 the report “Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) for the Protection of Vulnerable Targets: Review of Activities and Findings”, that identified some PPPs basic principles and practices which should be considered when introducing PPP policies. The report was disseminated in cooperation with INTERPOL and its Referral Centre and is available in Arabic, French and Spanish. Since then, UNICRI, with support from the Government of Portugal and a consortium of Portuguese public and private companies, has developed an international mechanism to promote PPP worldwide and set up a major outreach initiative in the country.

In addition, UNICRI produced a Handbook to facilitate the establishment of PPP projects at a national and local level, following up on workshops held in Norway (June 2009) and Portugal (February 2010), both of which were attended by an International PPP Coalition (amalgamation of UNICRI Partners). Moreover, together with the United Arab Emirates Ministry of Interior, UNICRI organized an International Symposium (May 2009) and a Workshop (March 2010) in Abu Dhabi to enhance synergies between public and private sectors for vulnerable target protection.

UNICRI is also promoting PPP concepts through its “International Permanent Observatory on Major Events Security”, particularly through the design of a Major Events International Academy and the implementation of two regional initiatives: EU-SEC, which is implemented in Europe with support from the European Commission and in cooperation with EUROPOL and 24 EU Member States, which sets the basis of the “European House of Major Events”; and IPO Americas, a joint UNICRI/CICTE initiative currently supported by the Government of Canada and implemented in cooperation with 27 OAS Member States.

As part of the effort to address the specific vulnerability of UN implementing partners in areas of humanitarian and peacekeeping operations prone to terrorist attacks, DSS is collaborating with UN system entities and the NGO community and collecting and analyzing data on security incidents relating to terrorism in order to identify emerging threats and deploy required mitigating measures.

Panel Discussion on PPPs: Public-Private Partnerships event


Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) for the protection of vulnerable targets: Review of activities and findings, UNICRI, January 2009

Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) for the protection of vulnerable targets: Advance Executive Summary, UNICRI, August 2008

CTITF Entities: