New York: The Global Programme on Countering Terrorist Threats against Vulnerable Targets has been launched with funding from the State of Qatar as part of its strong partnership with parties to the Global Strategy for coordinating the cooperation with the United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism, within the framework of the UN Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy.
Permanent Representative of the State of Qatar to the United Nations H E Ambassador Sheikha Alya Ahmed bin Saif Al Thani underlined that the State of Qatar realises this responsibility and follows a comprehensive approach to preventing and combating threats of terrorism and dealing with advanced threats; while paying special attention to the protection of vulnerable targets, expressing confidence that the Global Programme launched today will be key to achieving these goals.
The Global Programme on Countering Terrorist Threats against Vulnerable Targets was launched during a high-level virtual event organised by the United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism in partnership with the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations and the United Nations Interregional Crime and Justice Research Institute, in consultation with the Interpol and the Executive Directorate of the United Nations Counter-Terrorism Committee.
The Ambassador said in her thematic debate that in order to assess vulnerability and take preventive measures for critical infrastructures and other non-material targets, we need a better understanding of the threats, comprehensive and cooperative strategies, exchange of the best practices, capacity building and facilitating international cooperation and partnerships with the private sector.
She underlined that the new comes to fulfil these needs, and stressed the importance for member states to bear the primary responsibility for protecting vulnerable targets, responding to attacks and recovering from them, adding that Qatar is aware of this responsibility and follows a comprehensive approach to preventing and combating threats of terrorism and dealing with advanced threats, while paying special attention to the protection of vulnerable targets.
She highlighted the need to strengthen the international cooperation and partnerships within the framework of the Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy, referring in this context to UN Security Council Resolution (2396) which calls on states to strengthen national, regional and international partnerships with stakeholders to exchange information and experience in order to prevent terrorist attacks on vulnerable targets. The Ambassador stated that the State of Qatar has taken the issue of protecting endangered targets into consideration within the framework of its partnership with international partners such as the United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism and Interpol.
H E Ambassador Sheikha Alya Ahmed bin Saif Al Thani added that the State of Qatar has developed expertise and capabilities in this field, and expressed the State of Qatar’s readiness to contribute to strengthening international cooperation and building capabilities to confront terrorist acts against endangered targets.
She expressed her confidence that the cooperation between the United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism, the Counter-Terrorism Executive Directorate, the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations and the United Nations Interregional Crime and Justice Research Institute will result in strong activities and tangible results within the framework of this programme.
She noted that despite all the efforts exerted to prevent and combat terrorism, targets remain vulnerable to attack, including religious sites, adding that the past few years have witnessed an untold tragedy due to cowardly terrorist acts that violate the sanctity of places of worship. She said that the perpetrators of these attacks not only exploit the weakness of these open public sites, but also aim to cause greater suffering and deprive people of their right to practice their religious rites, expressing regret that incidents of racial and religious discrimination, intolerance and negative stereotyping continue to increase.
The high-level event to launch the Global Programme on Countering Terrorist Threats against Vulnerable Targets included a thematic debate involving senior United Nations officials, representatives of Member States and international organizations, policy makers and security experts.
Attending the event were UN Under-Secretary-General and Director of the UN Office of Counter-Terrorism (UNOCT) Vladimir Voronkov, High Representative of the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC) Miguel Angel Moratinos, Assistant-Secretary-General and Executive Director of the United Nations Counter Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate (CTED) Michele Coninsx, Director of the United Nations Interregional Crime and Justice Research Institute (UNICRI) Antonia Marie De Meo and Executive Director of Police Services at Interpol Stephen Kavanagh.
The Global Programme on Countering Terrorist Threats against Vulnerable Targets aims to better understand the threats and the comprehensive and collaborative strategies, share the best practices, build capacity, and facilitate international cooperation and partnerships with the private sector.
The Global Program also helps Member States stakeholders to develop a strategy and a national action plans to protect vulnerable targets; and provides practical training and mentoring services to support their capacity to combat terrorism.