The Council of Europe provides updates on combatting the financing of terrorism

The Council of Europe provides updates on combatting the financing of terrorism

Thu 21 Sep 2023

2022 AML-CFT Committee report available

The MONEYVAL Committee, an entity of the Council of Europe which is tasked with addressing challenge of money laundering and terrorist financing (ML/FT), has recently published the AML-CFT report 2022.

The findings of the report are primarily centred around adherence to compliance with global sanctions, notably in freezing or confiscation of assets.

The scope of this fifth edition of the report encompasses 33 states and territories which have been within its purview as of December 31, 2022. Notably, the same committee intends to conduct a sixth study in 2024.

According to recent findings of the committee, countries are urged to enhance efforts to improve their systems for both identification of fraudulent assets and confiscating them. Further, the report illustrates that states must review and strengthen their methods of managing assets, stemming from the instances of money laundering and terror financing. This entails imposing stringent and more diverse sanctions, by providing more resources, including financial, to the national entities responsible for combatting such challenges.

Amidst the Russia-Ukraine war that directions towards establishment of an authoritarian regimes, such instances are associated with corruption and use of illicit funding to bolster. Therefore, it becomes even more crucial to strengthen systems in order to deprive fraudulent actors access to such funds.

New strategy for 2023-2027

The Council of Europe recently adopted a counter-terrorism strategy for the period 2023-2027, tackling manifestations of terrorism and deciphering its underlying causes and triggers. This strategy further aims to address the rising threat of violent extremism in Europe, as well as effectively counter the misapplication of new technologies, exploitation of recruitment and training efforts, and the intricate interaction between instances of terrorism and violations of armed conflict regulations. This nexus is notable in the context of Russia’s aggression against Ukraine.

Follow-up actions launched as part of the counter-terrorism strategy 2018 – 2022

Previously, various actions as part of the counter terrorism strategy have been implemented. These include assessment of emerging threats in Europe and proposals to make use of information gathered from conflict zones as evidence in criminal proceedings concerning terror offences. In emphasising the actions launched in the past, it is necessary to follow-up the efforts undertaken.

Strengthening prevention, repression, and protection capacities of national authorities

The objective of this initiative is to strengthen the establishment of a set of legal benchmarks, insightful analytical reports, and reference tools. The anticipated outcomes of the actions encompass development of a reference tool which explains the factors leading to violent extremism and culminates in acts of terrorism. The tool will also provide recommendations to counter propagation of terrorism and radicalisation across the online platforms.

Furthermore, these actions seek to draw guidelines pertinent to prosecution of terror offences and serious transgressions against international humanitarian law, particularly in the context of armed conflict. The commitment further extends to reintegrate repatriated both women and children and other individuals who have been severely affected by the acts of terrorism.

Respect for human rights and need for strong cooperation against all forms of terrorism

The initiatives further emphasise the need to respect human rights and abide by the rule of law, as well as understand the importance of overseeing and caring for the victims of terrorism. Further, they highlight the need for cooperation both at international and cross functional levels to combat the various forms of terrorism and consider their effects on our daily lives, such as affecting the circulation of information, restricting freedom of movement and security issues.