Cooperation with the UN Security Council in the fight against terrorism: Switzerland's pioneering role

Bern, 05.12.2019 - Switzerland and the United Nations cooperate closely in the fight against terrorism. On Thursday in New York, Switzerland presented to the Security Council Counter-Terrorism Committee (CTC) the latest developments in its anti-terrorism measures following last year's visit by UN experts.

Stephan Husy, Ambassador-at-Large for Counterterrorism, explained Switzerland's counterterrorism strategy to the CTC. It is based on respect for the rule of law and human rights, placing emphasis on both prevention and punishment. It is also based on strong cooperation internationally, as well as at the national level between federal, cantonal and communal authorities.

The executive director of the CTC, Michèle Coninsx, welcomed Switzerland's transparency: it is the first country to share its assessments publicly with the UN organisation and the member states that request them.

During its visit to Switzerland in 2018, the CTC delegation pinpointed a number of measures taken by Switzerland that could be replicated in other countries, particularly in the areas of combating terrorist financing, preventing violent extremism and managing border controls.

Although the fight against terrorism has been a priority for UN agencies for many years, it was the attacks of 11 September 2001 in the United States that prompted the Security Council to adopt resolution 1373 (2001), establishing the CTC. The CTC is an instrument available to the Security Council to strengthen the ability of member states to prevent and counter terrorist acts. Since the rise of the 'Islamic State' group (Daesh) in 2014, it has been particularly active in combating the phenomenon of foreign terrorist fighters.

Switzerland is a candidate for a seat on the Security Council for the 2023–24 period, and looks forward to helping improve transparency and working methods in this body.

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