Pakistan calls for global cooperation to break nexus between terrorism, organised crime

NEW YORK: Pakistan urged the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) to ensure “evidence-based” responses to the nexus between terrorism and organised crime and insisted that a supply-demand approach to counter-narcotics is most effective. 

Speaking at the UNSC’s Open Debate on ‘Threats to international peace and security: Linkage between international terrorism and organised crime’ debate, Permanent Representative of Pakistan to UN Maleeha Lodhi said that only through collective regional and international efforts could the world community choke off the various sources that support terrorist outfits through organised crime.

“We will continue to play our role to sever the vicious link between terrorism and organised crime in our region,” Ambassador Lodhi said.

“This is critical for our own people, as well as for our neighbourhood and indeed the rest of the world,” she said, adding the crime-terrorist nexus varies across different contexts, with several common areas of confluence, including financing tools, recruiting vulnerable youth and operating in areas outside government control.

Permanent Representative of Pakistan to the United Nations Maleeha Lodhi. – File Photo

“Being one of the principal victims of terrorism, Pakistan’s resolve to eliminate this scourge is clear and unwavering,” she added.

Underscoring its commitment in that regard, Pakistan’s law enforcement agencies continued to make record drug seizures every year.

The Pakistani envoy added it was a “tangible manifestation of our consistent and dedicated efforts to not only protect our own country but also protect the rest of the world from this scourge.

“The global drug problem must be addressed effectively at local, national, regional and international levels,” the ambassador said citing a range of ongoing regional initiatives to tackle the illicit trade.

Steps to do so can include allocation of proper resources to better understand the correlation between terror financing and transnational organised crimes, re-establishment of government control over territories used for drug production, and promotion of development to provide alternative livelihoods, she added.

Regarding the global drug problem, Ambassador Lodhi called for focusing on reducing both the supply and the demand of narcotics drugs through a well-integrated, comprehensive and balanced approach.

She added, that strategies must be tailored to each situation, with the United Nations playing an effective role.