Our expanding international Coalition is seeking to build a global environment inhospitable to terrorism. In countries spanning the Middle East, Europe, and Southeast Asia, terrorists are being captured and their networks dismantled. At the United Nations, the G-8, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), the Organization of American States (OAS), and other international fora, we have promoted the adoption and implementation of resolutions condemning terrorism, advanced efforts to prevent and suppress terrorism and terror financing, and increased training and other assistance to build partner states’ capacity to combat terrorism and deny terrorists safehaven. There is a growing call around the world to reject the violent extremism that seeks to justify the use of terrorism as an ideological or political tool.
In addition to attacking al-Qaida and its affiliates, the United States has advanced efforts in the international community to deny safehaven and material support to terrorists. The United States will continue to insist that all state sponsors end support and sanctuary to terrorists. We will continue to implement sanctions against, and promote international isolation of, state sponsors until changes are made. At the same time, we will continue to work with allies in the War on Terror to strengthen their ability to destroy safehavens in remote and undergoverned territories.
In Afghanistan and Iraq, we are working to build the governments’ capacities to take control of captured terrorists and insurgents.
In Afghanistan, National Army has improved its capability, with 26,600 trained and equipped personnel in its ranks, and the Ministry of Interior Police force now possesses 57,800 trained personnel.
The United States has helped create the Yemeni Coast Guard, bolstered Yemen’s counterterrorism forces, executed development programs in remote and underdeveloped areas of the country, worked to reduce the illicit flow of small arms and light weapons, and strengthened Yemeni border security and export control measures.
Intensive diplomatic efforts resulted in substantial policy changes in Libya and improved counterterrorism cooperation. Libya was removed from the Not Fully Cooperating and State Sponsors of Terrorism lists. The U.S. Interest Section in Tripoli was upgraded to an Embassy. Libya is party to all 12 international conventions and protocols relating to terrorism. Libya also is working with the United States and the international community to eliminate its programs to develop weapons of mass destruction and Missile Technology Control Regime-class missiles.
Sudan is taking renewed steps to deter terrorists from operating within its borders and has increased information sharing internationally and strengthened its legal instruments for fighting terrorism. Because of its progress in combating terrorist activity, Sudan was removed from this year’s list of states not fully cooperating with U.S. anti-terrorism efforts.
With U.S. assistance, the Afghan In the Horn of Africa and in the absence of a functioning central government in Somalia, we are cooperating closely with regional partners to interdict arms flows and monitor terrorist activities through the East Africa Counterterrorism Initiative (EACTI). EACTI provides assistance, including border security and police training, to Comoros, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Madagascar, Tanzania, and Uganda.
Through the Trans-Sahel Counterterrorism Initiative, the United States provides military support and other assistance to Chad, Mali, Niger, Mauritania, Algeria, Morocco, Nigeria, Senegal, and Tunisia. TSCTI enhances cooperation among the region’s security forces and promotes democratic governance and economic growth.
Bilaterally with Europe, we aid the Turkish struggle to shut down financing and other material support provided to the terrorist Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK).
In Indonesia, the United States provides capacity-building training to the national police and law enforcement counterterrorism personnel to reinforce efforts to detect, disrupt, and dismantle terrorist networks. We also are working with the Indonesian Government to build its counterterrorism finance detection and enforcement capabilities.
In the Philippines, we helped create Light Reaction Companies to fight terrorists in Mindanao, continually train the Philippine National Police and other law enforcement agencies, and have an ongoing interagency effort to fight terrorists on the island of Jolo.
In Afghanistan and Colombia, the United States has expanded cooperation with its law enforcement and military counterparts on narcoterrorism, especially attacking the funding that the drug trade generates for insurgencies.
In the Three Plus One Group on Tri-border Area Security, the United States participates with Brazil, Argentina, and Paraguay to strengthen their capacity to fight cross-border crime and thwart money laundering and terrorist fundraising activities.
In FY 2005, the Department of State’s Antiterrorism Assistance (ATA) Program provided training and technical assistance to participants from 78 countries. Seventy-five countries are scheduled to receive ATA training through the end of FY 2006.
In 2005, through the Department of Defense’s Regional Defense Counterterrorism Fellowship Program, security personnel from 93 countries participated in events to build counterterrorism capacity, strengthen the global counterterrorism network, and counter ideological support for terrorism.
We are working on a regional basis to address existing and emerging terror safehavens. For example, our Embassies are partnered with Malaysia, Indonesia, and the Philippines as they deal with terrorist transit across the Celebes (Sulawesi) Sea; and we are supporting efforts among Mauritania, Algeria, Morocco, Niger, Chad, and Mali to counter a GSPC enemy recruiting and hiding in the desert which sits astride their national borders.
To facilitate regional counterterrorism efforts, the State Department is implementing the Regional Strategic Initiative (RSI), a program designed to develop flexible regional networks in key terrorist theaters of operation to assess the threat and devise collaborative strategies, actionable initiatives, and policy recommendations.
With UNSCR 1267, and its successor resolutions including UNSCR 1617, the U.N. has required Member States to impose travel restrictions and arms embargo against Osama bin Laden, the Taliban, al-Qaida, and those associated with them and to freeze their financial assets.
The United States drafted and cosponsored U.N. Security Council Resolution 1373, which requires all States to deny safehaven and prevent the movement of terrorists across borders. The Resolution also mandates all States to prevent and suppress terrorist financing by requiring states to criminalize terrorist financing, planning, preparing, or perpetrating terrorist acts.
U.N. Member States, not including the United States, have frozen over $106 million in terrorist-related assets.
We systematically develop and disseminate information products for foreign markets discrediting extremist propaganda; raising awareness of the costs of terrorism for individuals, families, and communities; and garnering broader understanding and support for U.S. policies and initiatives.
The Secretary of State has designated 59 groups on the Terrorist Exclusion List, which provides the legal authority to exclude individuals associated with such groups from entering the United States or to seek the deportation of those already present.
Over the long term, we will continue to work with allies and partners to advance effective democracy in order to prevent terrorist exploitation of ungoverned and weakly governed areas.