Despite advances, terrorist threats continues to persist and diversify

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By exploiting social grievances and sex stereotypes, “the combat against coercion has itself caused damage”, inspiring lone actors and co-opting other groups, Secretary-General António Guterres told the Second High-level Conference of Heads of Counter-Terrorism. 

Recounting “especially alarming” advances of Al-Qaida and ISIL violent fighters in Africa, helium upheld the value of supporting the continent arsenic “a global priority”.  

‘Dire’ situation 

The apical UN Official expressed deep concern over foreign violent fighters and underscored the request to clasp them accountable. 

He besides drew attraction to the destiny of the tens of thousands of relatives, women and children who are associated with them, urging Member States for their repatriation, particularly the children “who stay stranded successful struggle zones”. 

Amidst some “slow and not comprehensive” progress, Mr. Guterres said, “the concern is dire”. 

Turning consensus into action  

At the aforesaid time, years of expanding polarization and a normalization of hatred code person benefitted violent groups. 

“The menace stemming from achromatic supremacist…and different ethnically oregon racially motivated movements is progressively transnational”, stated the UN chief. 

And terrorist groups are exploiting the COVID-19 pandemic.  

“We request consistent, coordinated and broad efforts crossed countries, sectors and disciplines, anchored successful quality rights and the regularisation of law”, helium said, urging the General Assembly to “re-affirm the consensus" behind the UN Global Counter-terrorism Strategy to heighten national, determination and planetary efforts and follow connected Wednesday "a forward-looking solution for its review”. 

Resistance building 

To antagonistic terrorism, the UN main outlined a acceptable of overarching priorities, which began with gathering resilience. 

“Strong, conscionable and accountable institutions” as reflected in Sustainable Development Goal 16 for inclusive entree to justness “are a pre-requisite for States to contradict terrorists the abstraction to operate, bring them to justness and supply information to their populations”, was his first priority. 

While putting victims astatine the centre of each efforts, helium besides noted that to assistance interruption the rhythm of violence, aft serving their sentences, those recovered blameworthy should, when possible, be rehabilitated and reintegrated backmost into society. 

Reset quality rights 

The Secretary-General’s 2nd constituent was for a “human-rights reset for counter-terrorism”. 

“We cognize that erstwhile counter-terrorism is utilized to infringe upon the rights and freedoms of people, the effect is much alienation wrong communities and stronger violent narratives”, helium said, maintaining that this indispensable beryllium addressed by “protecting and promoting quality rights, including sex equality”. 

He also highlighted that misogyny, and women’s and girls’ subjugation, is “a communal element” of violent networks, which requires “pluralist and autarkic civic space” to counter it. 

Technological threats  

Finally, counter-terrorism must “rise to the challenges and opportunities of transformative technologies”, according to the UN chief. 

To this end, technological innovation must beryllium nurtured while mitigating its risks. 

“New technologies request to beryllium harnessed responsibly for counter-terrorism, wrong the model of the regularisation of instrumentality and quality rights”, helium said. 

Fighting on and offline 

Highlighting that societal media is being used to accelerate hate code and convulsive ideologies, helium pointed retired that since the pandemic, determination has besides been a spike successful cyberattacks and cybercrime. 

As capabilities and actions person not kept gait with risks, Member States person the eventual work to forestall technologies from falling into violent hands, helium said.  

In closing, the Secretary-General urged States to develop the capacity to collect, usage and speech physics grounds of violent activity “online and offline”. 

Technology in our hands  

The caput of the UN Office of Counter-Terrorism (OCT) spoke about terrorist challenges in an age of transformative technologies. 

“We request urgently to look up connected however to set our counter-terrorism efforts to respond to caller realities and emerging threats”, Vladimir Voronkov told the meeting.  

As digitally-enabled technologies alteration societies and economies, they present both opportunities and risks. 

“We person the means and…responsibility to enactment unneurotic to guarantee harmless and effectual usage of exertion and forestall its usage for violent purposes”, concluded the OCT chief. 

Global solidarity needed 

General Assembly President Volkan Bozkır noted that the archetypal anticipation was that the COVID-19 pandemic would deter violent groups and lockdowns restrict their movements, “it seems that violent groups, person rapidly adapted to this caller landscape”. 

He called for planetary solidarity against the emergence of xenophobia, racism and intolerance, stressing: “We indispensable beryllium vigilant, and halt hatred speech, erstwhile it is archetypal uttered – some successful person, and online. That is an individual, collective, national, and planetary responsibility”. 

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