UNITED NATIONS CALLS FOR UNIVERSAL EFFORT AGAINST TERRORISM

19 January 2005
SC/8296

UNITED NATIONS CALLS FOR UNIVERSAL EFFORT AGAINST TERRORISM

19/01/2005
Press ReleaseSC/8296

United Nations Calls for Universal Effort Against Terrorism

Counter-Terrorism Meeting Set for Almaty, Kazakhstan, 26-28 January 2005

NEW YORK, 19 January --The United Nations will press its case for universal participation in the fight against terrorism at a meeting of more than 70 international, regional and subregional organizations in Almaty, Kazakhstan, this month (26-28 January 2005).

The meeting, co-sponsored by the Security Council’s Counter-Terrorism Committee (CTC) and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), will be the fourth since March 2003 to leverage the knowledge and capacity of these bodies to help poorer nations build more effective legislative and institutional barriers to terrorist financing, illegal weapons trafficking and other threats.

“This meeting should bring us closer to a global framework for communication and cooperation”, said Javier Ruperez, Head of the CTC’s newly established Executive Directorate (CTED).  “These organizations have vast experience and established networks, and many of them fund technical assistance programmes that can help poorer nations bring their laws into harmony with international conventions and resolutions against terrorism.”

Mr. Ruperez noted that many countries have the will, but not the legislative and other capacity, to secure their borders and financial systems against terrorist intrusions and share critical information with their neighbours.  “Everyone agrees that we are in this fight together”, he said.  “The challenge before us is to establish coherent policies and share the best practices and resources to win it.”

Terrorist financing issues on the two-day agenda for Almaty include:  money laundering; efforts to regulate formal and non formal money transfers; the activities of charities; freezing and seizing of assets; and cooperation between financial intelligence units.  Legal and institutional concerns for discussion include:  the shortcomings of existing bilateral and multilateral agreements and the need for better information-sharing between national law enforcement agencies.  Other transborder issues include:  airport and seaport security and the safe international transit of goods and people; border monitoring and threat assessments to prevent illegal trafficking in arms and hazardous materials.

“The bottom line in all of this is cooperation”, says Javier Ruperez.  “We have to intensify our efforts to bring together governments, international organizations and other key players in a comprehensive fight.  We need to assess our vulnerabilities and work more closely together to reduce them.”

CTC/CTED:  The UN Counter-Terrorism Committee (CTC), was established on 28 September 2001 (resolution  1373) to enhance the ability of Member States to fight terrorism.  It includes all 15 members of the Security Council.  The Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate (CTED) was established on 26 March 2004 (resolution 1535) to reinforce the CTC’s work in monitoring Member States’ implementation of resolution 1373, building cooperation among regional, international and subregional organizations, and brokering assistance for poorer nations needing help to meet their obligations under the relevant Security Council resolutions to fight terrorism.

For more information, please contact:  Janos Tisovszky, Department of Public Information, e-mail: tisovszky@un.org, tel (917) 367-2068; or Angeles Cercos, CTED, e-mail: cercos@un.org.

* *** *

For information media. Not an official record.