In Rome PAM MPs review with UN and Central Asian Parliaments dedicated actions on counter terrorism and FTFs

The Parliamentary Assembly of the Mediterranean and the United Nations organised a Regional Seminar for parliamentarians on the “Evaluation of the role of national parliaments in promoting States’ implementation of the United Nations Security Council’s resolutions on Terrorism and Foreign Terrorist Fighters”. The Seminar, hosted by the President of the Italian Senate, H.E. Pietro Grasso, on 30-31 March 2017, in Rome, was held within the framework of the EU-UNOC Initiative on Criminal Justice Responses to Foreign Terrorist Fighters (2015-2019).
Over 100 parliamentarians representing 30 countries together with other stakeholders from the UN (Security Council Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate - CTED), UNODC, the judiciary, law enforcement agencies and other international and regional organisations, including PABSEC, IPA CIS, the League of Arab States, OSCE, WTO,  took part in this two-day debate held at the Italian Senate.  In addition to PAM member states it was agreed for PAM to extend the invitation to national parliaments from the Central Asian Region, in order to ensure the coverage of a broader geopolitical area, which is also interested by the FTF phenomenon and the risks related to their return. 
The discussions were developed over seven different sessions dedicated to the most urgent issues related to terrorism and Foreign Terrorist Fighters (FTF): The prominent role of parliaments in countering Terrorism and FTF and in implementing mandatory UNSC resolutions, including UNSC Resolution 2178 (2014); Addressing the “Life Cycle” of Radicalization to Violence; Rehabilitation and reintegration of returning FTFs; Strengthening cooperation and information sharing among Member States and enhancing inter-agency coordination on FTF cases; Challenges in preventing and countering the misuse of the social media platforms and related technology in promoting extremism and terrorism narratives; The United Nations’ approach to preventing terrorism and extremism leading to terrorism; Parliamentary perspectives on developing effective national policies and legal frameworks for preventing and countering radicalization and extremism.
In his welcoming speech, President Grasso reiterated the responsibility of Parliaments to scrutinise the policies of their Governments and to ensure that legislation and government policies reflect the principles of the constitutional systems and international law. 
High-level speakers introduced each topic in a series of Round Tables where every parliamentary delegation was called to present the status the implementation process of the UN SC relevant resolutions with lessons learned and best practices. 
In the course of the debate, while it was clear that all national parliaments were doing their best to transpose the provisions of these UNSC resolutions into the national legal frameworks,  the necessity to ensure, at the regional and international level, harmonised legislations and the inter-operability among the judiciary and the law enforcement agencies, was among the priorities identified by the partcipants. 
As a follow-up a number of proposals were tabled, which include among others, the drafting of a model international agreement on extradition; the compilation of an agreed set of  common legal terminology on FTF; a check-list of key actions to ensure the international coherence and harmonisation of the national legal frameworks; a series of sub-regional meetings where parliamentarians, judges and law enforcement officials, could exchange their views and experiences to ensure the effectiveness of the preventive mechanisms and counter-terrorism policies adopted.
PAM and the UN will present formally the outcome of this Conference to the UN Security Council and its Counter-Terrorism Committee at an ad hoc event in New York.//
issued on 04.04.2017
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