G20 leaders vow joint action against terrorism
Antalya (Turkey): Distressed by last week’s terror attacks in Paris that claimed 129 lives, leaders of the G20 countries on Monday resolved to jointly fight the worldwide scourge.
The leaders said this in a joint statement on terrorism issued at the conclusion of the two-day G20 Summit in this Mediterranean resort city.
“The fight against terrorism is a major priority for all of our countries and we reiterate our resolve to work together to prevent and suppress terrorist acts through increased international solidarity and cooperation,” the statement said.
The G20 leaders said the spread of terrorism globally directly undermined the maintenance of international peace and security and endangered “our ongoing efforts to strengthen the global economy and ensure sustainable growth and development”.
In a departure from the past when economy and trade used to be the main theme in the G20 summits, this time the focus was more on terrorism.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in his intervention on ‘Global Challenges – Terrorism and Refugee Crisis’ during the working dinner at G20 that terrorism was a principal global challenge and called for isolating those who support and sponsor terrorism.
He said there was need to strengthen efforts to prevent supply of arms to terrorists, disrupt terrorist movements, and curb and criminalise terror financing.
“We condemn, in the strongest possible terms, the heinous terrorist attacks in Paris on November 13 and in Ankara on October 10. They are an unacceptable affront to all humanity. We extend our deepest condolences to the victims of terrorist attacks and their families. We reaffirm our solidarity and resolve in the fight against terrorism in all its forms and wherever it occurs,” the joint statement said.
It stressed that terrorism should not be associated with any religion, nationality, civilisation or ethnic group.
The leaders also expressed concern over the growing flow of foreign terrorist fighters and the threat it poses for all states, including countries of origin, transit and destination.
“We are resolved to address this threat by enhancing our cooperation and developing relevant measures to prevent and tackle this phenomenon, including operational information-sharing, border management to detect travel, preventive measures and appropriate criminal justice response,” it stated, while adding that countries would work together to strengthen global aviation security.
The leaders reiterated their commitment “to tackling the financing channels of terrorism, particularly by enhanced cooperation on exchange of information and freezing of terrorist assets, criminalisation of terrorist financing and robust targeted financial sanctions regimes related to terrorism and terrorist financing”.
“We will continue to implement relevant FATF (Financial Action Task Force) recommendations and instruments. We call on FATF to identify measures, including pertaining to legal framework, to strengthen combating of terrorism financing and targeted financial sanctions and implementation thereof,” the statement said.
The FATF is an inter-governmental body to set standards and promote effective implementation of legal, regulatory and operational measures for combating money laundering, terrorist financing and other related threats to the integrity of the international financial system.
The leaders also referred to the international refugee crisis and said that the fight against terrorism would be “in full recognition of the UN’s central role, and in accordance with UN Charter and obligations under international law, including international human rights law, international refugee law and international humanitarian law”.
The leaders said the counter-terrorism actions must continue to be part of a comprehensive approach based on addressing the conditions conducive to terrorism as stipulated in UN Security Council Resolution 2178.
“The direct or indirect encouragement of terrorism, the incitement of terrorist acts and glorification of violence must be prevented. We recognise the need at all levels to work proactively to prevent violent extremism and support civil society in engaging youth and promoting inclusion of all members of society,” the statement said.