On September 12-13, 2022, Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas hosted the annual Five Country Ministerial, held in person for the first time since 2019. The Australian Minister of Home Affairs and Cybersecurity, the New Zealand Minister of Immigration, and the Canadian Minister of Public Safety participated in the event at the Department of Homeland Security’s St. Elizabeth’s Campus in Washington, DC; the UK Home Secretary was able to join briefly to share her opening remarks.
At this year’s Ministerial, the Five Country leaders discussed some of the most significant security challenges facing them at this time and how, working in close partnership with one another, they can address them most successfully. With joint strategies and shared values, the leaders discussed the growing threat of ideologically motivated violent extremism, heard from experts about innovative prevention strategies, and agreed to share best practices and undertake other work together. Underscoring their commitment to and solidarity with Ukraine in the face of Russia’s unprovoked invasion, the Five Countries expressed their support for those forcibly displaced and seeking refuge. Further, the Five Countries committed to the continued strengthening of domestic resilience to both natural and human caused hazards, including those driven by climate change.
The Ministers discussed the need to partner to expand lawful pathways for regular migration, thereby fulfilling critical labor needs and addressing disadvantaged persons’ hope for a better life. They redoubled their commitment to end the scourge of forced labor and human trafficking. In addition, they emphasized the importance of their joint efforts to counter cybersecurity threats, safeguard our citizens from malicious cyber activity, and ensure the security and resilience of emerging technologies including those impacting critical infrastructure. Finally, the Ministers expressed their commitment to deepen our cooperation to combat online child sexual exploitation and abuse and bring perpetrators to justice.
The Five Country Ministerial, held annually since 2013, serves as a key touchpoint for Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and the United States to discuss shared international and domestic security priorities. The 2022 FCM joint communique reaffirms the importance of the Five Country partnership in addressing complex homeland and national security challenges. The Ministers asserted the value of building on past cooperation and committed to continuing to work and stand together to safeguard our shared democratic values.