ROME, MARCH 29 – Under-Secretary-General Vladimir Voronkov, the Head of the United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism (UNOCT), concluded a two-day visit to Rome at the invitation of the Government. During the visit, Mr. Voronkov signed, in the presence of H.E. Mr. Enzo Moavero, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of Italy, a Memorandum of Understanding with the Italian Guardia di Finanza for capacity-building cooperation on countering the financing of terrorism.
The signing ceremony took place on the day that UN Security Council adopted a landmark resolution aimed at strengthening the global response to the financing of terrorism.
Mr. Voronkov stated that countering the financing of terrorism has been a long-standing priority for the United Nations. The international community cannot be successful in its efforts to prevent and counter this scourge unless terrorists are denied the means to finance themselves, their networks and operations. He underscored that the threat of terrorism is transnational and constantly evolving, and that it exploits vulnerabilities in financial systems, non-profit sectors, and new technologies intersecting with other serious crimes such as illicit drug trafficking and organized crime.
“To effectively counter terrorist financing, we need to robustly strengthen capacity in financial investigations, and ensure the development of investigative strategies for the disruption of financial flows directed at terrorist organizations and individuals,” the Under-Secretary-General said commending the expertise of the Guardia di Finanza in both areas.
Mr. Voronkov emphasized that “thanks to this Memorandum of Understanding, the requesting Member States and the United Nations as a whole will benefit from Italy’s long-standing experience and expertise in fighting economic and financial crime, ensuring respect for the rule of law.”
During the visit, Mr. Voronkov met with the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, H.E. Enzo Moavero Milanesi; with Honarable Marta Grande, President of the Foreign Affairs Commission; with Honorable Gennaro Migliore, Chamber of Deputies of the Italian Parliament; with General Luciano Carta, Director General of Information Agency for External Security (AISE); and with Prefect Lamberto Giannini, Director General of the Central Prevention Police of the Ministry of Interior of Italy, among other senior officials.
During these meetings, they discussed the important contribution of Italy in the fight against terrorism, the key role of parliamentarians in this area and partnership with civil society organizations as well as the need to uphold human rights while countering terrorism. They also talked about issues related to the return and relocation of foreign terrorist fighters (FTFs) and their family members including children, which is currently being discussed within the United Nations system.
UNOCT/UNCCT recently launched a Global Capacity-Building Programme on “Countering the Financing of Terrorism through Effective National and Regional Action”. It aims to gather good practices, share knowledge and contribute to effective implementation of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) recommendations. This programme supports the efforts of Member States to counter the financing of terrorism within the framework of the Global Counter-Terrorism Compact, which brings together, under the chairmanship of UNOCT, 36 UN entities as well as INTERPOL and the World Customs Organization.
This comprehensive technical assistance programme will contribute to support Member States implementing the newly adopted Security Council resolution 2462 on preventing and countering terrorism financing in collaboration with key UN entities.
The United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism (UNOCT), was established in June 2017 to provide leadership on the implementation of General Assembly counter-terrorism mandates, to enhance coordination and coherence through the Global Counter-Terrorism Compact, and to strengthen the delivery of the United Nations counter-terrorism capacity building assistance to Member States, through the United Nations Counter-Terrorism Centre (UNCCT). (@OnuItalia)