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EU at the UN

The EU's commitment to effective multilateralism, with the UN at its core, is a central element of its external action. As a UN observer with enhanced status, the EU delegation coordinates with its 28 Member States to speak with one voice. The EU also works closely with the UN secretariat and its agencies, funds & programmes, partnering on a range of global issues and challenges.

Mr. President,

I have the honour to speak on behalf of the European Union.

The Candidate Countries Turkey, Croatia* and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia*, the Countries of the Stabilisation and Association Process and potential candidates Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Serbia, as well as Ukraine, the Republic of Moldova and Armenia align themselves with this statement.

Mr. President,

Terrorism knows no boundary and requires global action. The work of the three Committees before us is a valuable part of such global response. The EU welcomes today’s briefing and the present debate as an opportunity for exchange of information and views between the Committees and Member States. We would like to use this occasion to reiterate that upholding human rights and the rule of law are essential elements in our struggle to combat terrorism. Any measures that we undertake to prevent and combat terrorism must comply with our obligations under international law, in particular human rights law, refugee law and international humanitarian law. We fully support the UN Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy and believe that its four pillars need to be implemented in a balanced and holistic manner.

Mr. President,

Let me first address some common aspects of work of the three counter-terrorism Committees, and subsequently cover each of the respective subsidiary bodies of this Council individually. The 1373, the 1267 and the 1540 Committees have recently worked more closely together. The EU welcomes this trend towards a more coherent and integrated implementation of the UN counter-terrorism policies. In this context, we would like to highlight especially the importance of cooperation between the Committees’ Expert Groups. The common strategy to engage with international, regional and sub-regional organizations is another important step in this direction. The EU commends the practice of joint visits to countries, reiterates its call for effective follow-up and encourages further deepening of the human rights element in these visits. We also welcome the participation of the three Committees in the work of the Counter-Terrorism Implementation Task Force, of whose efforts the EU has been a staunch supporter.

Mr. President,

As for the monitoring and promotion of the implementation of the resolution 1373 by the Counter-Terrorism Committee, we value highly the ongoing Preliminary Implementation Assessment practice and stocktaking exercise of implementation progress made by Member States. The EU encourages deeper integration of human rights elements in the work of the CTC and Counter-Terrorism Executive Directorate with Member States, especially with regard to PIAs. We call on all States to reply to the CTC in a timely manner, enter into dialogue with it, and follow-up on its recommendations. We note that the interim review of the CTED is to be conducted by the Security Council by 30 June 2009, and look forward to it. The EU welcomes the CTC’s revised technical assistance strategy aimed at improving the match-making between potential donors or providers of assistance and its recipients. Both the EU and its Member States have been among the main assistance providers. We have contributed through the CTC and CTED channels as well as through other UN bodies such as UNODC’s Terrorism Prevention Branch. The EU recently decided to extend the cooperation with CTED in the framework of the global counter-terrorism outreach component under its Instrument for Stability for the period of 2009-2011. In January 2009, during the visit of the CTED delegation at the EU Council’s Counter-Terrorism Working Party meeting, we have committed to further support the CTC. We likewise appreciate the intensified cooperation with relevant regional and sub-regional organizations and, in this context, the preparation of regional workshops.

Mr. President,

Let me now turn to the 1267 Committee. The EU fully supports the al-Qaida/Taliban sanctions regime. We welcome the fact that through the 1267 Committee, this Council has strengthened human rights and due process considerations in UN sanctions regimes, and hope that this trend will continue. The adoption of resolution 1822 last June was an important step in improving fair and clear procedures for the imposition of sanctions, listings and de-listings of individuals and entities. Last year, the Belgian Chair successfully paved the way for implementation of the resolution 1822 by developing concrete modalities and reflecting them in updated Committee’s guidelines, and launched the review process. Under the present Austrian chairmanship the Committee has started reviewing the names on the Consolidated List and published the first narrative summaries of reasons for listing on the Committee’s website. The EU is pleased to see that the implementation of resolution 1822 is being actively and efficiently carried out, with already some concrete results. On their part, EU Members States are committed to contribute to this process and encourage all other Member States to do the same.

Mr. President,

As you know, recent EU court cases on the EU implementation measures of the al-Qaida/Taliban sanctions regime have brought new challenges. The EU is presently adapting its procedures for implementing the 1267 sanctions, in order to accommodate the requirements of both the 1267 sanctions regime, in particular resolution 1822, and the European Court of Justice. The EU considers that the transparency and procedures of the al-Qaida/Taliban sanctions regime need to be further enhanced and welcomes all efforts in this regard. We are of the view that the resolution to be adopted by the end of December 2009 is the right opportunity in this respect. EU Member States are ready to constructively contribute to this process.

Lastly, Mr. President, I would like to address the work of the 1540 Committee. The EU considers it an essential tool, complementary to existing multilateral non-proliferation instruments, in countering the threat that weapons of mass destruction and their means of delivery could fall into the hands of non-State actors, including terrorists. We reiterate the importance of full implementation of resolution 1540 and in this context, welcome the Committee’s Report on Modalities for considering a Comprehensive Review of its implementation by Member States. We further welcome the convening of an open-ended meeting of the Committee this autumn, enabling Member States to exchange views and share best national practices ahead of the Review. We express our hope that the review will produce concrete and action-oriented recommendations. The EU commends the Committee’s efforts to facilitate the provision of assistance to States, as well as the cooperation with regional and sub-regional organizations. The regional workshops are an important part of the Committee’s outreach effort and of such cooperation. The EU has pledged to support the organization of these workshops financially. I am proud to announce that as of today, the first part of the EU-pledged amount has been transferred to UNODA’s Trust Fund for Global and Regional Disarmament Activities.

Mr. President,

The EU would like to join others in thanking the members, experts and Chairmen of the three Committees for the work already done and underway. I would like to assure you of EU’s full commitment to support the Committees’ future work.

Thank you, Mr. President.

* Croatia and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia continue to be part of the Stabilisation and Association Process.


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