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Pakistani Minister Says Terrorists Using Social Media To Radicalize Populations

January 15, 2013


Pakistani Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar says international terrorists are exploiting social media to radicalize local populations.

Khar's comments came at a ministerial-level debate in the UN Security Council in New York on January 15.

The debate was convened at the request of Pakistan, which holds the rotating presidency of the 15-member council, to discuss threats to international security caused by terrorism.

Khar said extremists were using new information and communication technologies and the Internet for recruitment and incitement, as well as planning and financing their activities.

Khar also suggested that counterterrorism efforts needed to adapt to these challenges in order to respond to the threat.

"Terrorists' misleading, distorted, and malicious narrative and their demented ideology that justifies the killing of innocent people must be quashed by the international community and the UN Security Council," she said. "It is our responsibility to counter terrorist propaganda. Our stories about human dignity and values should be louder than their criminal sagas. We must move in concert to decrease the ideological space in which terrorists operate freely."

Speaking at the debate, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice said strengthening cooperation at the UN and other multilateral organizations was important to addressing terrorism in the 21st century.

She also maintained that military force alone would not reduce international terrorism.

"The United States recognizes that force, while necessary, is not nearly sufficient to counter the threat effectively over the long term," she said. "We must also prioritize building state capacity, strengthening good governance and civilian institutions, promoting economic development and job creation."

Khar is scheduled to hold talks with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and will hold bilateral meetings with the high-level delegates participating in the debate.

With reporting by the Associated Press of Pakistan


Copyright (c) 2013. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.

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