Thank you for the opportunity to take the floor during this important session on UN counterterrorism architecture.
The United States strongly supported the creation of the UN Office of Counterterrorism to raise the profile across the UN system of the critical threat of terrorism to international peace and security. We want to see that the necessary architecture remains in place to help Member States strengthen and improve their capacities to counter this threat and protect their citizens.
UNOCT and the Global Compact Entities are making important steps to provide a whole-of-UN approach to counterterrorism and the United States is a proud donor toward several of its global programs. We also recognize the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Qatar for their substantial contributions to date, as well as the many other Member States providing extrabudgetary funding.
For counterterrorism and preventing and countering violent extremism programming to be effective, we need to ensure it is targeted, locally driven, and providing sustainable results. We also need to ensure that women, youth, and vulnerable populations not only receive this assistance and support, but also help shape and deliver the training themselves. To that end, we welcome UNOCT’s new human rights and gender section.
All the global programs UNOCT is coordinating must include civil society organizations, academia, and the private sector as equal partners. We encourage all Member States to work with UNOCT to ensure CSOs and others are appropriately included in UNOCT capacity building and training events.
The UN and governments cannot just tell civil society what we are doing. Rather, we must ask them how we are doing and what more should we do.
For UNOCT programming to thrive it needs to show measurable results for donors to continue providing funding. UNOCT also needs to measure and evaluate its efforts with civil society, to include its implementation of the 2020 Civil Society Engagement Strategy.
Conferences like this are an important step, but engagement with civil society and the promotion of human rights and the rule of law cannot be ad hoc. They must be intertwined with all policies and programs.
We want to hear from all corners of the world and make sure the voices are as diverse and inclusive as possible. In this regard, we welcome the leadership of several countries and CSOs in creating sustainable mechanisms for ensuring broad civil society engagement with UNOCT going forward.