Countries, organizations and institutions driving the fight against the growing scourge of terrorism need to share more information, and focus more on “financial intelligence”, said the deputy head of the UN Security Council’s counter-terrorism directorate, CTED.
Weixiong Chen was speaking at the beginning of special meeting organized by the Council on April 26, involving member states, international and regional organizations and civil society, looking at the nexus between international terrorism and organized crime.
The meeting between the United Nations Counter-Terrorism Committee, the ISIL (Da’esh) and Al-Qaida Sanctions Committee and the Taliban Sanctions Committee focused on the nexus between international terrorism and organized crime.
The purpose of the meeting was to identify areas for further research into the nature and scope of the links that may exist between terrorism, and transnational organized crime. The participants discussed regional aspects of the issue, as well as responses and lessons learned, and underlined the need for strengthened domestic, regional and international cooperation.
The meeting featured panel discussions with a regional focus on Latin America, West Africa, Europe, and Asia, respectively. The participants also explored ways to enhance the use of, or adapt, in the context of terrorism cases, existing methods that have proven successful in dealing with cases of organized crime.
“We must work to overcome inter-institutional barriers to information-sharing among institutions, and interlocutors responsible for countering terrorism, and those responsible for combating organized crime”, Chen said. “We must also address the current limited use of financial intelligence and limited understanding of the factors and vulnerabilities that could foster the establishment of some forms of cooperation between criminal groups and terrorist groups, or their affiliates.”
The Council’s Counter-Terrorism Committee recently adopted an addendum to its guiding principles on foreign terrorist fighters, recalling the “need to intensify and accelerate” exchanging financial information to expose links with organized crime.