I warmly congratulate you, Ambassador Mohammed Al-Hassan, and Ambassador Augustin Maraver, on your appointment as the co-facilitators for this important round of review of the UN Global Counter Terrorism Strategy. I thank you for sharing with us your program of work. You can count on my delegation’s full support.
My delegation aligns itself with the statement made by the Permanent Representative of Saudi Arabia delivered on behalf of OIC. Allow me to share a few additional thoughts in my national capacity.
I thank the President of the General Assembly for his valuable remarks on this review process. I also thank Under Secretary-General Vladimir Voronkov, for presenting the report of the UN Secretary-General on the activities of the UN System in implementing the United Nations Counter-Terrorism Strategy. We take note of the recommendations made in the report.
Bangladesh maintains a strict policy towards terrorism and violent extremism. We reject and condemn it in any forms and manifestations. Allow me now to share a few priorities:
- Firstly: The pandemic has unfolded new forms of terrorism. It has reinforced concerns over the use of ICT by terrorists. There has been significant rise in misinformation and disinformation leading to what is being called as ‘infodemic’. Hate speech and xenophobia have also been on the rise. This year’s review needs to pay special attention to these new forms of terrorism, and with specific recommendations to counter them.
- Secondly: Financing plays an instrumental role in the global efforts to fight terrorism. In the COVID situation, some member states had to shift resources away from counter-terrorism efforts to pandemic management. These states need to be supported with innovative financial solutions to counterterrorism, during and in the post-pandemic situation. We reiterate our call for funding from the regular budget for the implementation of the Global Counter-terrorism Strategy (GCTS).
- Thirdly: We believe that it is important to ensure accountability for acts of terrorism. In this regard, we call for greater international cooperation and mutual assistance among member states for the extradition of convicted and under-trial individuals associated with acts of terrorism.
- Fourth: Member states should invest all efforts to prevent and suppress money laundering and terrorist financing as a means to advance the implementation of the applicable global counter-terrorism strategies.
- Fifth: Upholding the rights and needs of the victims of terrorism is a critical part of the Strategy. The pandemic has put additional burden on victims and isolated them from support networks. International support for victims of terrorism must receive priority attention in the review of the GCTS. We also look forward to having fruitful discussions on sustainable means for assistance to the victims of terrorism during the First UN Global Congress of Victims of Terrorism to be held in June 2021.
- Sixth: We are going through a grave humanitarian crisis during the pandemic. The review strategy needs to update ways for balanced response to uphold human rights. Children, women, persons with disabilities and other such vulnerable groups of the society should receive the right priority in the review of the GCTS.
- Finally: National capacity building and training of counter-terrorism personnel of the developing countries should receive priority in the review agenda. In addition to the seamless exchange of information among member states, investment in prevention strategy, developing national information and communication toolkit, access to global financial support are also important priorities for us in our counter-terrorism efforts.
We need international solidarity and concerted efforts at every level, everywhere, to fight terrorism. We sincerely hope that the review exercise would focus on a whole-of-society approach for a terrorism free world.
Bangladesh will constructively engage in the 7th Biennial Review of the Global Counter-terrorism Strategy, and we look forward to a productive outcome.
I thank you all.