Remarks at Sixth Committee, 2nd meeting – General Assembly, 76th session.
Ms. Khalila Hackman
Counsellor, Legal Advisor
Ghana Permanent Mission to the United Nations
New York City October 6, 2021
STATEMENT DURING THE SIXTH COMMITTEE’S CONSIDERATION OF AGENDA ITEM 111: “MEASURES TO ELIMINATE INTERNATIONAL TERRORISM” AT THE 76TH SESSION OF THE UNITED NATIONS GENERAL ASSEMBLY
At the outset, I would like to congratulate you and the esteemed members of the bureau on your election and assure you of the cooperation and full support of my delegation during this 76th session.
My delegation aligns itself with the statement delivered by the distinguished representative of the Islamic Republic of Iran on behalf of the Non-Aligned Movement and the earlier statement delivered by Ghana, speaking on behalf of the African Group and thanks you for the opportunity to make the following remarks in our national capacity.
Terrorism in the Sahel and the West African sub-region continue to threaten and undermine the territorial integrity of Member States as well as the peace and stability needed for transformative socio-economic development, pushing further the objectives of regional economic integration.
While Ghana has not been a target of direct terrorist attacks, we, as a country, have not been immune to the far-reaching impact of terrorist activities on the economies and peoples of the region. The complex and transboundary impact of terrorism, now, exacerbated by the socio-economic fallouts of the COVID-19 pandemic, create serious security concerns for Ghana and the neighbouring countries. It is in this context that Ghana condemns terrorism in no uncertain terms and expresses her commitment to support counter-terrorism measures at all levels.
My delegation thanks the Secretary-General for his report on “Measures to eliminate international terrorism” contained in document A/76/201 and for his avowed commitment to support the successful implementation of the United Nations Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy. We also take note of the extensive work carried out under the 7th Review of the Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy and welcome its adoption by the General Assembly on 30th June, 2021.
I wish to further express Ghana’s appreciation to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crimes (UNODC) for its close cooperation and support on capacity-building which has been useful in strengthening national security and counter-terrorism strategies.
The elimination of terrorism calls for robust and integrated responses that can only be achieved through enhanced international cooperation. Ghana would therefore seek to leverage on her membership of the United Nations Security Council in 2022, to advance the already intensive work of the Council on security threats, including terrorism and violent extremism on the continent and we count on the support of all Member States.
Within the ECOWAS sub-region and, under the chairmanship of H. E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, President of the Republic of Ghana, Member States continue to work closely at all levels of inter-governmental process on border surveillance, information gathering, intelligence sharing, early warning systems, capacity building and mutual legal assistance on criminal matters including transboundary crimes.
The “Accra Initiative”, launched in September 2017 by five neighbouring States, namely Benin, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana and Togo, in response to growing insecurity linked to violent extremism in the region, is an important counter-terrorism framework designed as a cooperative and collaborative security mechanism built on three pillars of information and intelligence sharing; training of security and intelligence personnel; and the conduct of joint cross-border military operations.
This and several other efforts through regional initiatives and coalitions reinforce the importance of strengthening partnerships between the United Nations and regional bodies for holistic, inclusive and effective counterterrorism measures.
Despite repeated commitments by the international community to undertake concrete measures to eliminate terrorism and violent extremism, terrorist groups continue to be emboldened in their actions as a result of being funded through several formal and informal channels. Financing terrorism is antithetical to our collective goals to promote international peace and security, protect human rights and seek the development of our peoples. We therefore call upon Member States to intensify efforts to suppress and counter terrorism financing.
Ghana has already paid $5million out of the $10 million pledged to the ECOWAS Regional Security Fund as a demonstration of her commitment to support sub-regional financing mechanisms for peace and security and we take this opportunity to call for the mobilization of international funding support to fight against terrorism and violent extremism across the globe.
I wish to conclude by emphasizing that military strategies alone are not sufficient in addressing the scourge of terrorism. National and international efforts to eliminate terrorism would be better advanced through a strategic balance between economic development priorities and security priorities. This requires taking into account the needs of the people while rethinking the role of the state and its security institutions in responding to emerging threats. Soft power options aimed at supporting stable democratic governance, reducing inequalities, creating opportunities and redistribution of wealth, provide a repertoire of measures that go to the roots of the problem of terrorism. The 2030 Agenda for sustainable development offers the most comprehensive development blueprint yet and must be implemented as part of the broader approach to address the challenges of insecurity, particularly terrorism.
I THANK YOU