Nasser Bourita said, “It’s about international cooperation; about how to be effective and how to be responsive to the threat.”
Rabat – At the Global Counterterrorism Forum (GCTF) Coordinating Committee meeting on Wednesday, March 13, in Spain, the committee elected Morocco to co-chair the forum with Canada in 2020-2022.
It is the third consecutive time the committee has elected Morocco to co-chair the forum. Morocco is currently co-chairing the forum with the Netherlands.
Morocco has played an important role in disrupting a number of alleged terrorist cells.
According to the director of the Central Bureau of Judicial Investigation (BCIJ), Abdelhak Khiame, since its beginning in 2015, the BCIJ has dismantled 57 terrorist cells, including 8 cells in 2018, and arrested more than 3,129 people, 292 of whom had a criminal record.
Nasser Bourita, the Moroccan minister of foreign affairs and international cooperation, noted that the GCTF had asked Morocco and the Netherlands to continue as co-chairs until 2020, although the current mandate would have ended earlier.
“It’s about international cooperation; about how to be effective and how to be responsive to the threat,” Bourita said of the committee.
Twenty-nine countries and the EU founded the forum in 2011. It was the first action-oriented international platform dedicated to strengthening civilian counterterrorism cooperation and capacities.
GCTF is an international forum with an overarching mission of reducing the vulnerability of people worldwide to terrorism by preventing, combating, and prosecuting terrorist acts as well as countering incitement and recruitment to terrorism.
After the GCTF Ministerial Meeting, the committee stated, “We recognize that no state can address these threats alone.”
Anicetus Atakpu, a program officer, stated that the key areas the GCTF project targeted is raising community consciousness. After a meeting with the community of Abuja, Nigeria, 63 youth dropped their arms and took an oath to quit violence.
The 30 members of the GCTF meet annually each September during the UN general assembly to review the Global Counterterrorism Strategy.
The most recent terrorist attack occurred during the midday Friday prayer on March 15, in Christchurch, New Zealand. The shooting resulted in 49 casualties, and at least 50 people were injured.
The terrorist attack took place in two mosques, al Noor Mosque on Deans Avenue had 41 casualties, while eight people died at the shooting in Linwood Mosque on Linwood Avenue.
The terrorist attack highlights the need for global efforts against terrorism.