Briefing by Natalia Gherman, Executive Director of the Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate, at the Security Council meeting on threats to international peace and security

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Februaty 15, 2024

Natalia Gherman, Executive Director of the Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate (CTED), said that on behalf of the Counter-Terrorism Committee, her office assesses and facilitates technical assistance delivery for the implementation of relevant Council resolutions on counter-terrorism. CTED recommendations have led to several initiatives implemented by UN Global Counter-Terrorism Coordination Compact entities to address the threat posed by Da’esh and its affiliates, including supporting the prosecution, rehabilitation, and reintegration of individuals in a human-rights compliant, gender-responsive and age-appropriate manner. Highlighting two important work areas for her office, she said that addressing the use of new and emerging technologies for terrorist purposes is a priority.  Incidents around the world demonstrate that terrorists, including Da’esh, increasingly use unmanned aircraft systems for intelligence gathering and attacks.  These groups’ sophistication in producing these small and inexpensive devices is increasing.

To address this growing concern, the Counter-Terrorism Committee adopted the Abu Dhabi Guiding Principles in December, she reported.  These non-binding principles are intended to guide Member States in their responses to the threats posed by the use of unmanned aircraft systems for terrorist purposes, including against critical infrastructure and soft targets, and provide a framework for UN entities to design appropriate capacity-building initiatives.  In 2024, the Counter-Terrorism Committee expects to adopt non-binding guiding principles on preventing, detecting and disrupting the use for terrorist purposes of new and emerging financial technologies, as well as information and communications technology (ICT).  In light of the rapid technological advances in these fields, public-private partnerships are essential to counter the use of technologies for terrorist purposes.

The second priority is to ensure accountability and justice, she said, noting that 2024 marks 10 years since the adoption of resolution 2178 (2014) on the prosecution, reintegration and rehabilitation of foreign terrorist fighters.  Bringing terrorists to justice is an important commitment of all UN partners who have continued supporting accountability efforts for the crimes committed by Da’esh in Iraq and Syria, as well as in the Sahel, Maghreb and Europe.  The recommendations and analysis that CTED provides to Member States have also increasingly focused on ensuring accountability and justice for terrorist-related crimes, by applying the relevant legal frameworks, and to prosecute all acts of violence committed by terrorists.  The prosecution rate for sexual and gender-based violent crimes remains low, despite these types of crimes being a recurring tactic of terrorist groups, including Da’esh and its affiliates, as seen in Iraq, Syria and Nigeria. CTED will continue to cooperate closely with Member States, United Nations entities, international, regional and subregional organizations, civil society, and the private sector.

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