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Permanent Mission of the Republic of the Philippines to the United Nations

Philippine Statement
By
H.E. MR. LAURO L. BAJA, JR.
Ambassador and Permanent Representative
Permanent Mission of the Republic of the Philippines to the United Nations

Public Meeting on

Threats to International Peace and Security Caused by Terrorist Acts
(Counter-Terrorism Committee)

Security Council Chamber, 19 October 2004

Mr. President,

I would like to thank the Chairman of the Security Council Counter-Terrorism Committee, Ambassador Andrey I. Denizov, for his comprehensive report on the activities of the Committee over the last three months and on its 13th 90-day work program from the month of October until the end of this year.

The Security Council adopted resolution 1373 almost three years ago giving birth to the CTC in the aftermath of the trauma of 9/11. The scourge of terrorism, in our view, remains one of the defining threats to international peace and security for the 21st century. The Council has harnessed the efforts of member states to fight this menace through the mechanisms of resolution 1373, which has served as the fulcrum for the Council in the fight against terrorism. Earlier this year we sought to revitalize the work of the CTC through resolution 1535 and the establishment of the Counter-Terrorism Executive Directorate (CTED). We hope to see the CTED, under the leadership of Ambassador Javier Ruperez, being activated as soon as possible despite the considerable bureaucratic process that must come to pass to reach its full gear.

We are pleased that the Council has again demonstrated its unity and resolve against the enemies of peace by adopting two weeks ago resolution 1566. This resolution will further add substance and texture to the efforts of the Council in implementing practical measures against individuals and groups that are engaged in terror around the world. We are pleased that the Council was unequivocal in its conviction that, while not undermining the rights and prerogatives enshrined in the Charter, criminal acts against civilians will never be justified by the purported nobility of the motivation and rationalization for these acts. The protection of innocent civilians, especially women and children, is a primordial value that the Council will preserve at all times.

We welcome the strategy enumerated by Ambassador Denizov as the CTC intensifies its efforts to achieve the goals in resolutions 1373 and 1566.

It is critically important for all Council bodies dealing with international terrorism to establish close coordination and cooperation in pursuing their respective mandates. Their functions may be differentiated by methods but their mission to root out terror is undivided and certain.

We support the idea and the activities already undertaken by the CTC to actively and effectively strengthen practical cooperation with international, regional and sub-regional organizations in all areas related to resolution 1373.

Finally, we agree that efforts must be stepped up to develop direct dialogue and information exchange with member states on all aspects of the implementation of resolution 1373. There is a growing number of states that cannot submit their reports to the CTC on time. The CTC should look into the reasons for this alarming trend. We suspect that this trend is caused by the lack of capacity of states to comply with the high standards that the CTC may be asking of them. The CTC should redouble its efforts at providing technical assistance to states to comply with the provisions of resolution 1373. The CTC must go beyond its present “switchboard” orientation in directing states on where to seek help but rather be involved in the assessment and effective programs on how states could be assisted in specific areas to enable them to implement the requirements of resolution 1373.

One important initiative to make CTC pursue its mandate effectively is the visits that will be undertaken to member states to monitor the implementation of resolution 1373 and to engage in dialogue on the needs of states for technical and other assistance.

Aside from this initiative, the CTC should consider further innovations to further enhance international cooperation in the fight against terrorism. Given the difficulties of some states in individually implementing the resolution, the possibility of a regional approach among neighboring states could be looked into. This approach makes great sense on areas such as border control among states that share common borders and frontiers. These states may be further encouraged to establish among themselves early warning systems and mutual legal assistance mechanisms, which could develop a strong synergy in the fight against terrorism.

I would like to end by again emphasizing one theme, as I did in the Council’s public meetings on this issue in March and July this year, and that is: the global effort against terrorism requires that the Security Council and the rest of the membership of the United Nations remain as committed partners if success is to be achieved in eradicating the scourge of terrorism. It is my hope that this would embody our shared goal as we move ahead in this endeavor.

Thank you.









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