Thank you, Mr. President. Let me also thank the Chairmen for their briefings. Their dedicated leadership is central to the effectiveness of the Council’s three counterterrorism-related committees.
Mr. President, this Council session takes place at a critical juncture in our collective counterterrorism efforts, with the death of Osama bin Laden earlier this month, and the 10th anniversary of September 11th approaching. Bin Laden’s death is the most significant blow yet to al-Qaida’s leadership, but it does not mark the end of al-Qaida, or of terrorism. We know that much work remains.
Our partnerships have put unprecedented pressure on al-Qaida. The United States will actively pursue its bilateral and multilateral counterterrorism efforts, including efforts at the United Nations. For the United States, the UN is a key partner in the collective effort to combat and prevent terrorism.
Mr. President, I thank Ambassador Puri for his exceptional guidance of the Counter-Terrorism Committee during his first five months as its Chair. He has fostered greater efficiency in the CTC’s work and has worked closely with Counter-Terrorism Executive Director Mike Smith to keep the general membership up to date on the Committee’s activities through open meetings.
The CTC and CTED made great strides in 2010. We applaud CTED’s increased focus on developing innovative regional capacity-building workshops. Whether in the Horn of Africa, the Sahel, Southeast Asia, or South Asia, CTED has proven itself by bringing together local officials from the region to identify practical solutions to common counterterrorism challenges.
We are particularly pleased with how Security Council Resolution 1963 has helped align the Council’s counterterrorism framework with the UN Global Counterterrorism Strategy. We support the emphasis on addressing the conditions conducive to the spread of terrorism and reminding all that respect for human rights and the rule of law is an essential part of a successful counterterrorism effort. We also need to stress the critical role that local communities and civil society can play in our collective efforts to prevent and combat terrorism.
Mr. President, for over 11 years, the 1267 sanctions regime has been one of the UN’s most effective counterterrorism tools, and a symbol of international consensus against the ongoing threats posed by al-Qaida and the Taliban. The death of Osama bin Laden must not slow the 1267 Committee’s work.
The Committee should update its sanctions list regularly to reflect the changing nature of the terrorist threat. The United States welcomes the significant enhancements to the regime’s listing and delisting processes, most notably the review of every name on the Consolidated List and the establishment of an Ombudsperson to ensure that delisting procedures are fair and transparent. Over the last several months we have worked very closely with the 1267 Ombudsperson. She has performed an important role in facilitating the flow of information among petitioners, Member States and the Committee, and her reports to the Committee have provided valuable information. We look forward to continuing to work with her to further enhance the integrity of the sanctions regime.
In June, the Council will review the 1267 regime and renew the mandates of the Monitoring Team and the Ombudsperson. We hope other members will join us in considering a range of reforms so as to tailor the regime to the unique threats posed by al-Qaida and the Taliban. In addition, we will continue to push for more robust implementation of existing sanctions by all Member States to make global sanctions more effective.
Let me thank Ambassador Wittig and his team for doing excellent work since taking over as Chair in January. They, along with the Secretariat, have worked diligently to implement the latest round of reforms. I also thank the Monitoring Team for its important role.
Mr. President, the United States welcomes the Security Council’s recent adoption of Resolution 1977, which extends the mandate of the 1540 Committee for ten years. Let me thank Ambassador Sangqu, the UN Secretariat and UNODA, for their work that led to Resolution 1977, as well as the continuing efforts to fully implement Resolution 1540. The United States will continue our commitment to the work of the Committee under its new long-term mandate and, in that regard, we’re pleased to announce that we will make a contribution of $3 million for the 1540 Committee’s work.
Resolution 1977 urges the Committee to actively engage in dialogue with states on implementing 1540, and we are coordinating with the Group of Experts to conduct a country visit to the United States in September 2011.
We look forward to the Committee’s recommendations regarding working methods, modality, and structure to maximize the Committee’s efficiency and effectiveness, and we strongly support appointing a coordination and leadership position on the group of experts which would help coordinate the overall activities of the Committee.
Mr. President, we support the efforts, and overall direction, of these three committees. Under the capable leadership of the chairs, the Council’s counterterrorism efforts will guide and reinforce member states’ actions to deter terrorism and proliferation efforts by non-state actors.
Thank you, Mr. President.
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