India calls for efforts to destroy terrorists’ safe havens
“To say that terrorism today constitutes the most serious challenge to international peace and security would be both a self-evident truism and an understatement. No cause or grievance can justify terrorism,” India’s Ambassador to the UN and Chair of the Counter Terrorism Committee Hardeep Singh Puri said at the 11th Meeting of the Heads of Special Services, Security Agencies and Law-Enforcement Organizations.
Puri said combating the global scourge of terrorism effectively requires necessary political will of member states and greater international and regional cooperation.
“We need to constantly expand the scope of the legal instruments taking into account the changing nature of the threat and expand enforcement efforts to destroy safe havens for terrorists, their financial flows and their support networks. We also need to evolve a powerful counter-narrative to combat incitement and radicalization,” he added.
He stressed that measures taken by nations to combat terrorism must comply with all obligations under international law, in particular international human rights, refugee and humanitarian law. He termed the UN’s convening power as “unparalleled,” which has played a “seminal” role in combating terrorism and capacity building of member States.
“Our efforts at the UN are now increasingly focussed towards enhancing greater cooperation, coherence and coordination of counter-terrorism efforts amongst various UN entities,” he added. Puri said the success in the fight against terrorism goes hand-in-hand with progress in strengthening counter-terrorism cooperation and exchange of information at the international, regional and sub-regional level.
Outlining the measures instituted by the Counter Terrorism Committee to combat terrorism, Puri said the Committee adopted an ‘Outcome Document’ last year which is a major landmark in providing strategic direction to the work of the Committee aimed at strengthening capacity of States in their counter-terrorism efforts.
The document raised the benchmark in the fight against terrorism to a higher level and approved a zero-tolerance approach which is now part of the counter-terrorism lexicon. The Committee also issued an updated global survey which provides a comprehensive overview on a regional as well as thematic basis of the status of counter-terrorism efforts around the world and evaluates Member States strengths and vulnerabilities and identifies gaps.
Next month, the Committee intends to focus efforts on “preventing and suppressing terrorist financing.” Further, as part of its outreach efforts, the Committee will also explore the possibility of collaboration with the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU).