CENTRAL ASIA: UN counter-terrorism meeting
ANKARA, 27 Jan 2005 (IRIN) - The fourth special meeting of the Counter-Terrorism Committee (CTC) of the UN Security Council took place in the Kazakh commercial capital, Almaty, on Wednesday and Thursday, with the participation of dozens of international and regional organisations, Kazakh foreign ministry spokesman, Ilyas Omarov, told IRIN from Almaty.
"Terrorism doesn't have borders," Omarov said, noting that the main point discussed at the meeting was elaboration of a unified plan of action on combating terrorism. The event served as a platform for exchanging current views, so that member states come to a common position on the threat, he said.
The CTC was established after the 11 September 2001 terrorist attacks and is made up of all 15 members of the Security Council. The CTC monitors the implementation of a UN resolution aimed at fighting terrorism and tries to increase the capacity of member nations to do so.
The problem of terrorism is a major issue in the Central Asian region and this meeting should have an impact on regional countries, Omarov said.
The Almaty meeting looked at the elimination of illegal financing of terrorist groups, the activities of the regional counter-terrorism centre, fighting illegal arms and drugs trade, and boosting cooperation among national and international counter-terrorism bodies.
Regional analysts welcomed the move by the UN counter-terrorism body. "All the member states should look at the issue of solidarity as terrorism is causing more and more problems on the international level, while efforts to counter it mainly remain on the national level," Erlan Karin, head of the Almaty-based Centre on Anti-terrorism Programmes, a local think-tank, told IRIN from the Kyrgyz capital, Bishkek.
"It's part of a continuous UN effort to counter international terrorist activities," Sergey Andreyev, an Oxford-based analyst, told IRIN. "Central Asia is bordering some rather troublesome countries in the region and it has been subjected to terrorist attacks in the past. Terrorism is becoming an
increasing threat to internal and regional security in the region," Andreyev