The United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism was established through the adoption of General Assembly resolution 71/291 on 15 June 2017. Mr. Vladimir Voronkov was appointed as Under-Secretary-General of the Office on 21 June 2017.
As suggested by Secretary-General Antonio Guterres in his report (A/71/858) on the Capability of the United Nations to Assist Member States in implementing the United Nations Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy, the Counter-Terrorism Implementation Task Force and the UN Counter-Terrorism Centre, initially established in the Department of Political Affairs were moved into a new Office of Counter-Terrorism headed by an Under-Secretary–General.
The new Under-Secretary-General will provide strategic leadership to United Nations counter-terrorism efforts, participate in the decision-making process of the United Nations and ensure that the cross-cutting origins and impact of terrorism are reflected in the work of the United Nations.
The Office of Counter-Terrorism has five main functions:
- (a) provide leadership on the General Assembly counter-terrorism mandates entrusted to the Secretary-General from across the United Nations system;
- (b) enhance coordination and coherence across the 38 Global Counter-Terrorism Coordination Compact (former CTITF) Task Force entities to ensure the balanced implementation of the four pillars of the UN Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy;
- (c) strengthen the delivery of United Nations counter-terrorism capacity-building assistance to Member States;
- (d) improve visibility, advocacy and resource mobilization for United Nations counter-terrorism efforts; and
- (e) ensure that due priority is given to counterterrorism across the United Nations system and that the important work on preventing violent extremism is firmly rooted in the Strategy.
The Office will aim to have a close relationship with Security Council bodies and Member States, strengthening existing and developing new partnerships through regular travel and attendance at counter-terrorism-related meetings.
The creation of the Office is the first major institutional reform undertaken by the Secretary-General.