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UN asks countries to secure human rights while fighting terror

Last updated on: January 23, 2009 16:43 IST
United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon joined other senior United Nations officials in urging countries to refocus attention on human rights in the fight against terrorism, as experts began considering innovative ways to combat the global scourge.

In a message to the one-day conference hosted by the UN Interregional Crime and Justice Research Institute, the secretary-general underscored the boost counter-terrorism received in 2006 when the UN General Assembly unanimously adopted the global counter terrorism strategy.

It identifies four pillars for action: addressing conditions that are conducive to terrorism; preventing and combating terrorism; building the capacity of states; and ensuring respect for human rights and the rule of law as the fundamental basis for the fight against terrorism, said Ban.

Assistant secretary-general for policy planning and chair of the UN Counter-Terrorism Implementation Task Force, Robert Orr, said, it is safe to say that human rights is clearly at the centre of the global counter-terrorism strategy at the UN.

In response to questions about United States President Obama's decision to close the detention facility in Guatanamo Bay, Orr said that the UN both recognises and appreciates it.

The secretary-general also noted that the global security agenda had broadened to encompass climate change, global health and disarmament as well as counter-terrorism.

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