• India
  • May 12

Explainer - United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism (UNOCT)

• India’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations Ambassador Ruchira Kamboj handed over to Vladimir Voronkov, Under Secretary General, United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism (UNOCT) the country’s voluntary financial contribution of $500,000 towards the UN Counter-Terrorism Trust Fund.

• The contribution underscores India’s unwavering commitment to support multilateral efforts in the global fight against the scourge of terrorism.

United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism (UNOCT)

• The United Nations Counter-Terrorism Centre (UNCCT) was established in September 2011 to promote international counter-terrorism cooperation and support Member States in the implementation of the Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy through a voluntary contribution of the government of Saudi Arabia.

• On June 15, 2017, the UN General Assembly established the United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism (UNOCT) and decided to transfer UNCCT, together with its staff and all associated resources, to the new Office. 

• The creation of the UNOCT is considered as the first major institutional reform undertaken by the UN Secretary-General António Guterres following his report on the capability of the United Nations to assist Member States in implementing the United Nations Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy. 

Main functions of UNOCT:

i) Provide leadership on the General Assembly counter-terrorism mandates entrusted to the Secretary-General from across the United Nations system.

ii) Enhance coordination and coherence across the Global Counter-Terrorism Coordination Compact entities to ensure the balanced implementation of the four pillars of the UN Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy.

iii) Strengthen the delivery of United Nations counter-terrorism capacity-building assistance to Member States.

iv) Improve visibility, advocacy and resource mobilisation for United Nations counter-terrorism efforts.

v) Ensure that due priority is given to counter-terrorism across the United Nations system and that the important work on preventing violent extremism is firmly rooted in the Strategy.

vi) Strengthen the delivery of the United Nations counter-terrorism capacity building assistance to Member States, through the United Nations Counter-Terrorism Centre (UNCCT).

• The UN Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy and its biennial General Assembly Review resolutions provide the substance of UNOCT’s mandate.

Pillars of the United Nations Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy:

The United Nations Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy is composed of four pillars. 

They are:

i) Measures to address the conditions conducive to the spread of terrorism.

ii) Measures to prevent and combat terrorism.

iii) Measures to build States’ capacity to prevent and combat terrorism and to strengthen the role of the United Nations system in that regard.

iv) Measures to ensure respect for human rights for all and the rule of law as the fundamental basis of the fight against terrorism.

• The UNOCT works closely with UN Member States, UN entities, civil society, international and regional organisations, academia and other stakeholders strengthening existing and developing new partnerships to effectively prevent and counter terrorism.

The United Nations Trust Fund for Counter-Terrorism

• The Fund was established in 2009 by the Secretary-General and transferred to UNOCT when it was created in 2017 following General Assembly resolution. 

• The Fund accepts contributions from governments, inter-governmental and non-governmental organisations, private institutions and individuals. 

• Contributions may be unearmarked or earmarked for one of UNOCT’s global programmes or specific initiatives. 

• Since its inception in 2009 until March 31, 2024, UNOCT mobilized $379.5 million in pledges from 42 funding partners and through allocations from the United Nations Peace and Development Trust Fund.

India’s funding for UNOCT

• India places great significance on the mandate and the work undertaken by the United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism (UNOCT) in building the capacity of member states to effectively deal with the threat of terrorism. 

• The latest contribution reaffirms India’s unwavering commitment to supporting multilateral efforts led by the United Nations in the global fight against the scourge of terrorism.

• India’s contribution would support UNOCT’s global programmes, mainly Countering Financing of Terrorism (CFT) and Countering Terrorist Travel Programme (CTTP).

• They are aimed at building capacities of the member states of eastern and southern Africa to combat the critical issues of financing of terrorism and prevent the movement and travel of terrorists.

• Addressing the issue of the growing threat of terrorism in Africa has been one of the counter-terrorism priorities of India for the past few years.

• Since 2018, India has also been actively supporting programmes combating this threat.

• With its current contribution, India’s cumulative financial support to the trust fund now stands at $2.55 million.

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