Monday, December 22, 2014

General Assembly 68th Session holds the Fourth Biennial Review of the United Nations Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy

The General Assembly held its 4th Biennial Review of the United Nations Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy on Thursday, 12 June and Friday, 13 June 2014. The review reaffirmed the four pillars of the counter terrorism strategy of the United Nations and focused on Member State experiences with its implementation.

At the start of the debate, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called for Member States to take advantage of the session to make the United Nations more relevant in its international efforts to combat terrorism. He referenced his April 2014 report on the Global Counter Terrorism Strategy, which illustrated trends in terrorists operations, its direct links with political instability, the upsurge in internet usage by terrorists and increased decentralization of terrorist networks.

Following the Secretary-General’s remarks, over 60 Member State representatives took the floor, with Ambassador Michel Tommo Monthe of Cameron chairing the meeting as the acting President of General Assembly.  Statements focused on global counter-terrorism policies and approaches, as well as effective practices for mitigating ever-changing terrorist threats. Further, representatives highlighted the gaps in the Strategy and areas where it could be improved.

On the second day of the debate, H.E. Ambassador Zahir Tanin, Permanent Representative of Afghanistan, delivered a statement in his national capacity.  “Terrorism is a menace that plagues the whole region,” he said. “It is crucial Afghanistan’s neighbors and countries in the region play their role in contributing to peace and security in my country.” Ambassador Tanin highlighted Afghanistan’s efforts aimed at eliminating terrorism in the country, including relevant legal frameworks and initiatives aimed at limiting violent extremism.

At the end of his remarks, the Ambassador emphasized the ongoing threat of terrorism to peace and security in Afghanistan, in the region, and globally. “Afghanistan deplores all acts of terror in any region by any group, and is committed to the eradication of terror at its roots,” he explained. “To this end, we commend the efforts of the Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy, and call for its widespread implementation moving forward.”