Tuesday, 21 September 2021 12:16 GMT

EU seeks more global cooperation against terrorist financing


(MENAFN- Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)) BRUSSELS, Oct 30 (KUNA) - The European Union Wednesday said that it is in dialogue with a number of countries around the world to boost cooperation in curbing terrorism financing.
"We have a dialogue with a range of countries which is designed to support and to reinforce the international work that is done through the FATF(Financial Action Task Force) and other international structures to help to crackdown on terrorist financing," Julian King, EU Commissioner for Security Union, told a news conference.
He said the European Commission has taken a number of steps, some on anti-money laundering, and some of on terrorist financing, noting that the two are different sets of issues.
King called for more cooperation by establishing a terrorist finance tracking system for the euro area.
On the issue of foreign terrorists, he said "we are in a better position than we were a few years ago because we have modernised the checks at our borders and modernized the Schengen Information System to share information among all EU member states on foreign terrorists."
He said that the possible repatriation of foreign fighters who are EU citizens from Iraq and Syria is a responsibility of EU member states.
He noted that 1,100 people in Europe are in prison for terrorist offences, and estimated that twice that number who were jailed for other offences have become radicalised while in prisons.
"We must focus how to deal with the radicalisation in prisons and support programmes in member states on this issue," said King.
On his part, EU Commissioner for migration and interior affairs, Dimitris Avramopoulos, told the joint press conference that the returnof foreign terrorist fighters "is a very important and sensitive issue and we want to be 100 percent sure that the ones that cross the European border will not pose a threat to our security."
"Our services have started working on that. All our agencies are doing their jobs and I am sure that threats that might occur in the future can be intercepted in an earlier time," said Avramopoulos.
"The Internet is now the most significant battleground for terrorists' action in particular as regards radicalisation. We therefore call on the European Parliament and the Council to swiftly agree before the end of the year on our legislative proposal to take down terrorist content online," he said.
The two EU officials presented a reportin the press conference which takes stock of the progress made in the past years towards achieving an effective and genuine Security Union.
The report presented recaps the initiatives taken by the Commission in some of the key areas of the Security Union including, the fight against terrorism, information exchange, countering radicalisation and cybersecurity.
In the context of the Christchurch attack against two mosques in March 2019, the report also recommends the EU start negotiations with New Zealand on the exchange of personal data with Europol to fight serious crime and terrorism. (end)
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