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Co-operation in the fight against terrorism vital

UK tells EU partners co-operation in the fight against terrorism vital

The Home Secretary David Blunkett has underlined the importance of international co-operation in the fight against terrorism. Mr Blunkett stressed that 'the threat of terrorism does not respect borders, nor is any individual state immune'.

The Secretary of State was speaking ahead of his meeting with US Attorney General John Ashcroft at the informal Justice and Home Affairs council in Copenhagen.

Mr Blunkett said:

"We all know that to combat terrorism we have to tackle the global networks which now threaten all of us, and which transcend national boundaries. That is why European and global wide action is so important."

The Home Secretary said that co-operation to tackle the organised criminal and financial networks as well as the terrorist cells, 'requires co-ordination and the use of the most advanced techniques, which are now being used by the terrorist themselves'.

The Secretary of State said:

"The cross-border co-operation following the atrocities of September 11 has demonstrated how effectively countries work together in the fight against terrorism."

"But we cannot allow ourselves to become complacent. Recent weeks have shown that the threat has not receded, and underlined the need for countries to build on our combined efforts to eliminate terrorism at a global level. The threat of terrorism does not respect borders, nor is any individual state immune."

Efforts to bring negotiations on judicial co-operation between the EU and the US to a successful conclusion will be supported said Mr Blunkett.

The Home Secretary said in conclusion:

"We must also redouble our efforts to ensure that we can identify and freeze the assets of those who are raising funds for, and providing the terrorists, with the resources to prepare and carry out attacks on democracy."

ENDS

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