At the invitation of the Council of Europe, the United Nations Security Council Counter-Terrorism Committee (CTC) held a special meeting on the theme of prevention of terrorism from 19 to 21 April 2011 at the Palais de l'Europe in Strasbourg, France.
International, regional and subregional organizations were invited to join members of the Security Council Counter Terrorism Committee and the Council of Europe in discussing preventive policies and measures. Aimed at speeding up international efforts to fight terrorism, the three-day meeting focused on prevention policies, comprehensive and integrated strategies, and the role of law enforcement and the criminal justice system in preventing terrorism.
While group discussions on prevention policies concentrated on radicalization and incitement, terrorist recruitment and the role of public-private partnerships, the discussions on strategies focused on national frameworks and inter-agency coordination, communication and international cooperation. Participants also examined the role of law enforcement and the criminal justice system. Topics on the agenda included identification, analysis and information-sharing; criminalization and prosecution of offences related to terrorism; and safeguards in criminal proceedings.
The meeting was opened by Hardeep Singh Puri, Chair of the Counter-Terrorism Committee, Thorbjørn Jagland, Secretary General of the Council of Europe and Mike Smith, Assistant Secretary-General of the United Nations and head of the Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate.
As a regional organisation, the Council of Europe is committed to facilitating the implementation of UN Resolutions. The Council of Europe has been strenghtening legal action against terrorism through three main international treaties: the Convention on the Prevention Terrorism, the Convention on Laundering, Search, Seizure and Confiscation of the Proceeds from Crime and on the Financing of Terrorism and the Convention on Cybercrime.
Moreover, the Council of Europe's action is built on the fundamental principle that it is both possible and necessary to fight terrorism while respecting human rights, fundamental freedoms and the rule of law. The Organisation's main institutions, such as the Committee of Ministers, the Parliamentary Assembly, and its more specialised bodies, such as the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) and the Commissionner for Human Rights, are all dedicated to this objective.
The Council of Europe is also exploring ways to reduce tensions existing in contemporary societies by carrying out activities in the fields of education, youth and the media, ensuring the protection of minorities and promoting intercultural and interreligious dialogue.