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UN Security Council stressed need for collective action to combat terrorism

With terrorism continuing to pose a serious threat to global peace and security, the Security Council today stressed the need to enhance collective efforts to defeat a scourge that is not unique to any one country or region.

In a presidential statement adopted at the end of the meeting, the 15-member body urged all Member States and the UN system to address the existing gaps in the global fight against terrorism, and stressed the need to ensure that counter-terrorism remains a priority on the international agenda.

“The Security Council recognizes that terrorism will not be defeated by military force, law enforcement measures, and intelligence operations alone,” it stated, underlining the need to “address the conditions conducive to the spread of terrorism.”

It also underscored that effective counter-terrorism measures and respect for human rights, fundamental freedoms and the rule of law are complementary and mutually reinforcing, and are an essential part of a successful counter-terrorism effort.

Opening today’s meeting, which was chaired by Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu of Turkey, which holds the Council’s rotating presidency for this month, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon noted that many countries sitting around the Council table have first-hand experience of terrorism.

“So many attacks... so many lives lost and families destroyed... The United Nations has been targeted, too: from Iraq to Pakistan, from Algeria to Afghanistan,” said the Secretary-General.

“Terrorism may be a gathering storm, but the international response is gathering steam,” he added, noting that over the past five years, the UN has expanded its counter-terrorism activities, increased inter-agency coordination and enhanced partnerships with a wide range of international and regional organizations.

Joint initiatives with Member States in many regions, including the Sahel, the Horn of Africa, the Middle East and South and Central Asia, have shown that there is much that can be done.

Mr. Ban said countering terrorism demands a broad approach that includes continuing efforts in the fields of security and law enforcement, as well as in education, development and inter-cultural dialogue. In addition, more must also be done to understand the reasons people are drawn to violence to prevent others from following that path.

He also cited the need to continue strengthening the legal regime, building on existing international counter-terrorism instruments and relevant Council resolutions, and improve the sharing of information and best practices.

No counter-terrorism approach would be complete, he added, without a commitment to human rights and the rule of law, as well as support for the victims of terrorism.

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