On 30 October 2019, the Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate (CTED) participated in an event with New York University’s (NYU) Center for Global Affairs (CGA) marking five years of cooperation between CTED and CGA. The panel, “Futures of Counterterrorism” included discussions about emerging counter-terrorism trends around the globe such as drones. In May, CTED issued a Trends Alert outlining the increased use of drones by nonstate actors. According to one of the panellists, Melissa Salyk-Virk, Senior Policy Analyst of International Security at New America, at least 20 nonstate actors have used drones for various capabilities such as surveillance or attacks. Chief of Branch of CTED, David Scharia said terrorists have used technologies developed for certain purposes in dramatically different ways therefore, technology companies should perform more risk assessments for malicious actors.
Panellists also spoke about countering violent extremism and the evolving situation in Iraq and Syria such as issues facing Member States regarding foreign terrorist fighters and the way forward regarding prosecution, rehabilitation and reintegration of women and children. In September, CTED published two Analytical Briefs about the repatriation of ISIL-affiliated women and ISIL-affiliated children.
CTED’s cooperation with CGA has developed over the past five years, allowing students and professors to engage with CTED, bringing academic perspectives and insights to CTED’s research and information-gathering activities. Some of the projects that NYU and CTED have collaborated on over the years include a decision-making framework, to use when vetting private sector partners and technologies which is useful for public-private partnerships on countering terrorism. Another activity was a roundtable on “Engagement with the private sector in promoting the use of technology for counter-terrorism purposes.”
NYU is one of the oldest members of CTED’s Global Research Network (GRN). In its resolution 2129 (2013), the Security Council directs CTED to identify emerging issues, trends and developments relating to relevant Security Council resolutions. In accordance with the resolution, and in order to strengthen its existing research and analysis capabilities, CTED launched the Global Research Network (GRN) in February 2015. Since then, the GRN has grown into a vibrant and diverse network of over 100 leading think tanks and research institutions from Africa, the Americas, Asia, Europe, the Middle East, and Oceania.