Minister calls for global response in tackling spread of terrorism

Fight against terrorism – Reply by M. Jean-Yves Le Drian, Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, to a question in the Senate

Paris, 16 June 2021

You’re right to draw attention to the scale of the threat and the need for extreme vigilance and to deem the fight against terrorism an absolute priority. We’re clearly seeing it spreading, not just in the Sahel. In recent days things have been happening around Lake Chad with the rise of ISWAP and Boko Haram. There’s the rise of al-Shabaab in northern Mozambique. There’s the risk of a resurgence of Daesh in Syria and Iraq. There are risks linked to the situation in Afghanistan, among others.

The response to this must be global. In other words, it must be international and global, integrating intelligence information. And for some years now, at national level and the level of international cooperation, we’ve been strengthening our capabilities and our means of cooperation, particularly recently. This action also means armed intervention when necessary. We’re doing it. We’re doing it in the Sahel, the Armed Forces Minister has just confirmed this counter-terrorism aspect of the new approach in the way we are organized in the Sahel. We’re also still doing it in Syria, through the intervention of our forces based in Jordan. We’re also doing it through the United Nations, because at this very moment the anti-terrorist strategy is being defined and should bring together all the United Nations member States on the basis of legal elements and the need for sanctions which will have to be put in place from lists. We’re doing so by combating financing: a few months ago with the Australians we took the initiative of the so-called “No Money for Terror” coalition, leading to a Security Council resolution which established standards and sanctions for any complicity in financing terrorism. We’re also doing this by fighting against the spread of terrorism online, in particular since the events in Christchurch, and you know that an initiative was taken with New Zealand’s Prime Minister for a coalition called the Christchurch Call, which has enabled significant progress to be made.

This is all global action which is regularly reviewed at national level in the defence council meetings held by the President./.

Published on 17/06/2021

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