Qatar renews support for UN counter-terrorism efforts

The Gulf state has been leading global efforts alongside its international partners in preventing and combatting terrorism globally. 

Qatar renewed its support for global counter-terrorism efforts at the official launch of the “Project on Protecting Vulnerable Targets by Using Behavioral Insights to Strengthen Law Enforcement Capabilities” in Madrid, on Saturday.

Representing the Gulf state at the event, Qatar’s Ambassador to Spain Abdullah Al Hamar stressed the importance of such programmes “in light of the threats facing the world that exploit the weakness of vulnerable targets”.

He also reiterated Qatar’s support for the United Nation’s efforts “to address the multiple facets of the challenge posed by terrorism and violent extremism conducive to terrorism,” as per a statement by Doha’s foreign ministry.

The Qatari envoy pointed to the Gulf state’s “expertise and capabilities” in combatting terrorism and “protecting non-fortified sites such as major sporting events, especially in preparation for hosting the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022.”

“Behavioural science can contribute to improving planning to prevent and respond to attacks against vulnerable targets and facilitate law enforcement efforts in this area,” added Al Hamar.

Qatar’s anti-terrorism efforts

Al Hamar further highlighted the importance of the UN’s Counter-Terrorism Office, saying it “contributes to the implementation of programmes in a more effective and efficient manner”. 

Qatar became the first country in the region to establish the UN office in 2021 as part of its commitment in aiding global efforts to fight terrorism.

Last month, Qatar and the European Union signed a new working agreement over setting up “a secure system for the exchange of information”.

The move means Qatar would be able to join law enforcement authorities from more than 40 countries to tackle crime and criminal investigations while exchanging mutual advice on such matters.

In 2015, Qatar and the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) signed a $49 million agreement to fund projects that focus on “countering violent extremism through prisoner rehabilitation and social integration programmes, and youth education for justice”.

The Gulf state is also a founding member of the Global Counter-terrorism Forum and is the only country from the Middle East that is a board member of the Global Community Engagement and Resilience Fund.

As firm believers in the role of education in empowering the youth and helping the global fight against terrorism, the UN General Assembly unanimously passed resolution 74/275 in 2020 to establish 9 September as the International Day to Protect Education from Attack. 

The initiative was proposed by Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, Chairperson of Education Above All Foundation and a member of the UN Sustainable Development Goals Advocates Group.

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