26 January 2004
Khartoum Declaration on Terrorism and Transnational Organized Crime Adopted at UNODC Workshop in Sudan
VIENNA, 23 January (UN Information Service) -- The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the Government of Sudan jointly organized a workshop on International Cooperation on Counter-Terrorism and the Fight against Transnational Organized Crime, held from 17 to 19 January 2004, in Khartoum, Sudan.
The workshop was attended by experts from Ethiopia, Eritrea, Kenya, Somalia, Sudan and Uganda, Member States of the Inter-governmental Authority on Development (IGAD), as well as by observers from Algeria and Egypt. The following organizations and institutions also participated in the workshop: the African Union, the Commonwealth Secretariat, the Council of Arab Ministers of Interior, the Counter Terrorism Committee of the United Nations Security Council, the European Union, the IGAD Secretariat, INTERPOL, the International Monetary Fund, the Institute for Security Studies, the League of Arab States, the Naif University, the Organization of Islamic Conferences, the United Nations African Institute for the Prevention of Crime and the Treatment of Offenders, and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights.
On 19 January 2004, the workshop culminated in the Khartoum Declaration on Terrorism and Transnational Organized Crime in which IGAD Member States reaffirmed their commitment to the fight against terrorism and transnational organized crime and expressed their serious concern about the menace these problems pose in the region. Among other issues, the Khartoum Declaration focused on technical assistance needs of IGAD Member States with regard to the ratification and implementation of twelve international conventions and protocols against terrorism and the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime and its Protocols. As such, the representatives of six IGAD Member States envisaged to request technical assistance concerning legislative implementation of these legal instruments from UNODC and other international, regional and sub-regional organizations in the course of 2004.
The Khartoum Declaration also called upon UNODC and the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights to develop joint technical assistance programmes on counter-terrorism while fully respecting human rights, and encouraged the IGAD Member States to use the assistance of the International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL) to ensure an adequate exchange of information in the area of counter-terrorism and transnational organized crime.
In June 2003, IGAD Member States had adopted in Kampala, Uganda, a Plan of Action against Terrorism in which they pledged to swiftly ratify and implement the twelve international conventions and protocols for the prevention and suppression of terrorism. The Khartoum Declaration is expected to build on the achievements of the IGAD Secretariat and its Member States towards the implementation of this Plan of Action against Terrorism.
The workshop, which was also attended by a wide spectrum of relevant international, regional, and sub-regional organizations and institutions, provided an opportunity, not only to share the experiences in countering terrorism and transnational organized crime, but also to strengthen international cooperation, including the provision of technical assistance and the launching of joint initiatives.
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For more information, please contact Mr. Walter Gehr +43 1 26060 4512 and/or Ms. Admirela Balic.
Tel.: +43 1 26060 4130 at the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, Vienna.