Briefing by H.E. Mr. Ertuğrul Apakan, Chairman of the Counter-Terrorism Committee, to the Member States of the United Nations

Ertuğrul Apakan 21.07.2010
Dear colleagues,
Ladies and gentlemen,

In my capacity as Chairman of the Security Council Counter-Terrorism Committee, I am pleased to welcome you to today’s briefing. I would like to thank you for your interest that you have shown not only to this briefing, but also to the previous briefings and presentations. This encourages us to organize such activities more frequently.

Following this briefing, the Executive Directorate of the Counter-Terrorism Committee will make two presentations first on “Facilitation of technical assistance and capacity-building for Member States” pursuant to Security Council resolution 1373 concerning counter-terrorism and secondly on “Terrorist financing: links with transnational organized crime and new payment technologies”.

I am pleased to have with me Mr. Mike Smith, the Executive Director of CTED, who will provide you with further detailed information on recent activities of CTED and plans for the future.

Now, let me begin with a short briefing on the work of the Committee in the past three months, since our last such briefing to the UN membership on 8 April 2010.

Distinguished colleagues,

The continuous threat of terrorism to international peace and security compels us to be ever vigilant and steadfast in our fight against this scourge. The recent bombings and terrorist activities in different parts of the world demonstrate that the provisions of the Security Council resolutions 1373 and 1624 are as relevant as ever. We believe that the Counter-Terrorism Committee plays a critical role in promoting and facilitating States’ implementation of those requirements.

As I mentioned in my last briefing in April, the Committee had adopted a more transparent approach aiming to raise the visibility and effectiveness of its work, and thus streamlined some of its working methods. As such, the Committee continues to effectively monitor the implementation of resolution 1373 through the Preliminary Implementation Assessments (PIAs), but does so in accordance with the new guidelines adopted early this year.

In this regard, three sub-committee meetings were held with the representatives of Member States which are late in submitting reports to the Committee with a view to exploring avenues for assisting them in the preparation of the reports and enhancing overall implementation of resolution 1373. Taking this opportunity, I wish to thank the distinguished representatives of the Member States who took part in these meetings. I would also like to emphasize that the cooperation by all Member States is crucial in order to have a full and timely evaluation.

During the past three months, the Committee also undertook three country visits to discuss the implementation of measures contained in resolution 1373. Other visits are planned for the upcoming months. We consider those visits extremely important, since they provide direct contact and dialogue with the national practitioners on the ground and help us better understand the challenges that individual countries are facing.

The Committee has also continued with its practice of regional and thematic discussions, focusing on specific challenges in some regions as highlighted in the Global Survey on the implementation of resolution 1373. Today, you will hear presentations on two such thematic issues which has already been discussed in the Committee.

Ladies and gentlemen,

Another piece of important work that the Committee has concluded is the adoption of a new policy guidance on international cooperation with a view to ensuring effective implementation of all relevant obligations by Member States in the area of international cooperation, including in the field of extradition and mutual legal assistance. The guidance was adopted in line with our understanding that an effective response to terrorism requires functioning cooperation among Member States, and we hope that this new document will indeed contribute to this objective. The policy guidance is available on the Committee’s web-site.

Speaking of the Committee’s web-site, I am also glad to announce that with technical support of CTED, the Committee has completed the work on improving the web-site by making it more user-friendly in terms of its both contents and features. I would invite you to explore the new web-site of the CTC, and share your views and observations with us.

Distinguished colleagues,

Looking forward, I wish to inform you about the three important events that the Committee is still working on. One of them is the seminar for prosecutors to be organized at the United Nations headquarters. We are considering to hold this seminar at the end of this year. The Committee is also working on the two special meetings that are indicated in our work program; one with international, regional and subregional organizations, and the other to review the global efforts to implement resolution 1373.

Before ending my presentation, I would like to mention that we would continue with our practice of holding such regular informal briefings to Member States, in line with the principle of transparency and accountability, and stand ready, together with CTED, to provide you with further information on our work in bilateral contacts.

Thank you.