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Annan Calls For Anti-Terrorism Co-operation

Global Anti-Terrorism Strategy Will Only Succeed If Countries Work Together, Says Annan

New York, Sep 19 2006 8:00PM

Urging United Nations Member States to seize the opportunity to prove that collective action works when fighting terrorism, Secretary-General Kofi Annan today formally launched the UN’s Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy.

In a statement delivered on his behalf by Deputy Secretary-General Mark Malloch Brown at UN Headquarters in New York, Mr. Annan said “we now have a chance to harness real political will that has been built up over the past four months.”

The strategy was adopted by consensus earlier this month by the General Assembly’s 192 Member States after a year of sometimes fractious negotiations as countries worked to overcome their differences and agree on a common approach.

Acknowledging many countries will still continue to pursue their own approach to combating terrorism, Mr. Annan said that only time would tell whether Member States actually meet their commitments under the global strategy.

“If future generations are to live in a world free from terrorism and its inhumane tactics, Member States must embark without delay on the journey they have mapped out so carefully. They must start translating their commitments into reality at once.”

The strategy, which consists of a resolution and a plan of action, includes practical steps at the local, national and international level – ranging from strengthening the capacity of individual States to prevent and combat terrorism to ensuring that human rights and the rule of law are always respected in the fight against terrorism.

It also calls for measures to enhance the role of the UN system to deal with terrorism, and to make sure that the world body’s efforts are better coordinated.

Mr. Annan stressed today that he will play his part, including reaching out to the biotechnology industry to ensure that advances in the field are used for the public good and not for terrorist purposes, and working towards strengthening UN counter-terrorism partnerships with regional organizations.

The strategy makes clear that it is vital to consistently, unequivocally and strongly condemn terrorism in all forms and manifestations, committed by whomever and for whatever purposes. Terrorism cannot and should not be associated with any religion, nationality, civilization or ethnic group.

Speaking at the launch, General Assembly President Sheikha Haya Rashed Al Khalifa urged world leaders to do their utmost to agree on a comprehensive global convention against terrorism as soon as possible.

She also stressed that the new strategy must be a living document that can be updated to respond more effectively to any future changes in society or technology.

Ends

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