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Security Council antiterrorism committees move towards greater cooperation

“Cooperation is a crucial element in efforts against the threat of terrorism, in particular in relation to the use of nuclear arms, chemical and biological,” said Ambassador Claude Heller of Mexico, in a joint statement on behalf of the Chairmen of the Monitoring Team, the Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate and the Expert Group related to resolution 1540 on combating the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction by non-State actors. “Terrorism and weapons of mass destruction proliferation to non-State actors continue to be a threat to international peace and security,” he added in his report to the Council.Also briefing the 15-member body was Ambassador Thomas Mayr-Harting of Austria, chair of the so-called 1267 Committee on sanctions against individuals and entities linked to Al-Qaida and the Taliban, who stated that he planned to “intensify the dialogue between the Committee and the authorities of Afghanistan.” He also noted that the Committee was in the process of reviewing all 488 names on the sanctions list by 30 June. So far 24 names had been de-listed and five deceased individuals had been removed, with 35 names still pending, as more information was necessary.“Cooperation and interaction with Member States is an essential element of the work of the Committee and visits to Member States by the Monitoring Team play an important role in this respect,” he added, noting that the visits provide the Committee with additional information on the implementation of the sanctions measures, as well as their effectiveness.Mr. Mayr-Harting also said that the Committee is close to choosing an Ombudsman, an office that the Council authorized last December. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is expected to appoint a candidate, in close consultation with the Committee, in the coming days.Nearly a decade since the Security Council passed its wide-ranging counter-terrorism resolution in the wake of the 11 September 2001 terrorist attacks in the United States, “terrorism continues to be a major threat to international peace and security compelling us to be ever vigilante and steadfast in our fight against this scourge,” said Ambassador Erugrul Apakan of Turkey, who chairs the Committee monitoring the implementation of resolution 1373.He said that in the past six months, the Committee had taken up issues such as border control and security, maritime security and terrorist acts committed at sea, and was now working on policy guidance on international legal cooperation. The Committee had placed particular emphasis on increasing its dialogue and cooperation with other relevant international and regional organizations, such as the African Union (AU) and the Organization of American States (OAS).In the coming period, the Committee planned to organize a seminar in New York on the theme of “Bringing Terrorists to Justice.” 11 May 2010The heads of the three committees set up by the Security Council to support the efforts of Member States to combat terrorism today reported increased cooperation within the past six months among their respective bodies and their expert groups, and voiced the need for the Council’s guidance to better coordinate future efforts. read more