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United Nations Finally Finds the Courage to Pass a Resolution That Will End the War in Ukraine
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Fact Sheet on UNSC Resolution 2178 on Foreign Terrorist Fighters
24 September 2014
U.S. Mission to the United Nations
Office of Press and Public Diplomacy
New York, N.Y.
September 24, 2014 FACT SHEET: UN Security Council Resolution 2178 on Foreign Terrorist Fighters
Today, President Obama is chairing a historic high-level summit of
the UN Security Council focusing on the surge in Foreign Terrorist
Fighters (FTFs) worldwide. At this session, the Security Council will
adopt a resolution creating a new policy and legal framework for
international action in response to this threat.
Resolution 2178 requires countries to take certain steps to address
the FTF threat, including to prevent suspected FTFs from entering or
transiting their territories and to implement legislation to prosecute
FTFs. It also calls on states to undertake various steps to improve
international cooperation in this field, such as by sharing information
on criminal investigations, interdictions and prosecutions. In this
resolution, for the first time ever, the Council underscores that
Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) is an essential element of an
effective response to the FTF phenomenon. Resolution 2178 also focuses
existing UN counterterrorism bodies on the FTF threat, providing a
framework for long-term monitoring and assistance to countries in their
efforts to address this threat. Adopted under Chapter VII of the UN Charter, this resolution:
1. Reaffirms that Member States must comply with their human rights
obligations when fighting terrorism and notes that a failure to do so
contributes to radicalization.
2. Defines the term Foreign Terrorist Fighter as "individuals who
travel to a State other than their States of residence or nationality
for the purpose of the perpetration, planning, or preparation of, or
participation in, terrorist acts or the providing or receiving of
terrorist training, including in connection with armed conflict."
3. Expresses particular concern about the FTFs who have joined the
Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), Al-Nusrah Front, and other
groups associated with Al-Qaida.
4. Expresses concern over the use of the internet to incite others to
commit terrorist acts and underlines the need to prevent terrorists
from exploiting technology to incite support for terrorist acts, while
at the same time respecting human rights and fundamental freedoms.
5. Notes the work of other multilateral bodies, including INTERPOL
and other UN agencies, and the recent adoption by the Global
Counterterrorism Forum (GCTF) of recommended good practices to respond
to the FTF threat.
6. Demands FTFs disarm and cease all terrorist acts and participation in armed conflict.
7. Calls upon countries to require their airlines to provide advance
passenger information to detect the travel of UN-listed terrorists. Obligations
8. Requires countries to prevent and suppress recruiting, organizing,
transporting, and equipping of FTFs, and the financing of FTF travel
9. Requires countries to have laws that permit the prosecution of:
o Their nationals and others departing their territories who travel or attempt to travel for terrorism purposes;
o The wilful provision or collection of funds by their nationals or
in their territories with the intent or knowledge that they will be used
to finance travel of FTFs;
o The wilful organization or facilitation by their nationals or in their territories of such travel.
10. Requires countries to prevent the entry or transit of individuals believed to be traveling for terrorism-related purposes. International Cooperation
11. Calls upon countries to improve international, regional, and
sub-regional cooperation to prevent FTF travel, including through
12. Highlights the need for countries to comply with their existing
obligations regarding cooperation in terrorism-related criminal
investigations and proceedings with respect to investigations and
proceedings involving FTFs.
13. Encourages INTERPOL to intensify its efforts to respond to the FTF threat.
14. Calls upon countries to help each other build capacity to address the FTF threat and welcomes bilateral assistance to do so. Countering Violent Extremism in Order to Prevent Terrorism
15. Underscores that Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) is an essential element of responding to the FTF threat.
16. Calls upon States to enhance CVE efforts and take steps to
decrease the risk of radicalization to terrorism in their societies,
such as engaging relevant local communities, empowering concerned groups
of civil society, and adopting tailored approaches to countering FTF
recruitment. UN Engagement
17. Directs UN counter-terrorism bodies to focus attention on the FTF
threat, enabling the international community to assess compliance with
this resolution and to target assistance to those countries that need
help enforcing its provisions.
18. Requests a report from the UN within 180 days to assess
comprehensively the FTF phenomenon and recommend actions to enhance the
response to the threat.