World community must stay one step ahead of ISIL/Da’esh — UN official

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UNITED NATIONS, Feb 9 (APP):Despite military successes against ISIL/Da’esh, the terrorist group and its affiliates continue to pose a significant threat around the world, the top United Nations Counter-Terrorism official told the Security Council Thursday.
The rapidly evolving and transnational threat from ISIL/Da’esh presents a difficult challenge for member states and the international community, Vladimir Voronkov, the head of the UN Counter-Terrorism Office at a Security Council meeting, on threats to international peace and security caused by terrorist acts said.
ISIL/Da’esh is no longer focused on conquering and holding territory. It has been forced to adapt and focus primarily on a smaller and more motivated group of individuals who remain committed to inspiring, enabling and carrying out attacks, he added.
Countering the changing threat implies the need to stay one step ahead of ISIL as it continues to adapt and evolve, stressed the UN official.
In particular, Voronkov called for a strong international framework to counter the threat from ISIL/Da’esh through the UN Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy as well as relevant General Assembly and Security Council resolutions, as well as effective implementation of existing multilateral tools and legal instruments, conventions and protocols.
Addressing the ISIL/Da’esh threat also requires addressing its underlying conditions which sway young men and women towards violent extremism, he added.
He also urged the international community to address the deficit in counter-terrorism cooperation at the global, regional and national levels and called on countries to engage fully at the first ever UN Summit of Heads of Counter-Terrorism Agencies (to be held in June.)
The UN official informed the 15-member council of the evolving activities of ISIL and its affiliates in different parts of the world, including efforts to fund its illicit activities and spread propaganda.
He also warned that ISIL/Da’esh members and its sympathizers continue to abuse social media, as well as technology such as encryption methods and communication tools within the dark web, to communicate, coordinate and facilitate.