PostHeaderIcon Co-Chairs' Summary Report of the 2nd ASEAN Regional Forum Intersessional Meeting on Counter-Terrorism and Transnational Crime, Manila, 30-31 March 2004

CO-CHAIRS' SUMMARY REPORT OF THE
SECOND ASEAN REGIONAL FORUM
INTERSESSIONAL MEETING ON
COUNTER-TERRORISM AND TRANSNATIONAL CRIME

Manila, 30-31 March 2004

 

1. As agreed by the Ministers at the Tenth ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) in Phnom Penh on 18 June 2003, the Second ARF Intersessional Meeting on Counter-terrorism and Transnational Crime (ISM CT -TC) was held on 30-31 March 2004 in Manila, Philippines. The meeting was organized by the Philippines and the Russian Federation, and co-chaired by Hon. Alicia C. Ramos, Assistant Secretary of the Office of Asian and Pacific Affairs, Department of Foreign Affairs and Hon. Vladimir Andreyev, Deputy Director, Department of New Challenges and Threats, Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
2. The Meeting was attended by representatives of Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Canada, People's Republic of China, European Union, India, Indonesia, Japan, Republic of Korea, Laos, Malaysia, Mongolia, Myanmar, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Russia, Singapore, Thailand, United States of America, and Vietnam. The ASEAN Secretariat, the International Law Enforcement Academy, and the Southeast Asia Regional Center on Counter-terrorism also participated in the Meeting. The list of delegates is attached as Annex A.

AGENDA ITEM 1: ADOPTION OF AGENDA

3. The Agenda is attached as Annex B and the Program of Activities is attached as Annex C.
4. The opening remarks of the Philippine co-chair and the Russian co-chair are attached as Annex D and E.

AGENDA ITEM 2: UPDATE ON TERRORIST ORGANIZATIONS, RECENT TERRORIST ACTIVITIES, AND COUNTER-TERRORISM MEASURES

5. Participants reported on measures undertaken by individual countries to counter terrorism. Among others, participants highlighted institutional and legal measures taken at the domestic level as well as those measures that have been implemented to promote cooperation on counter-terrorism at the regional and international levels. 
6. The general view was that terrorism remains a major threat to modern 'civilization and must be condemned in all its forms. There was recognition that no country could succeed in the fight against terrorism alone. Thus, efforts must be directed to broaden and strengthen international cooperation to deal with the problem. There was recognition that sharing of intelligence with other countries should be an essential element of any form of cooperation against terrorism.
7. Participants were in agreement that the nature of terrorism has evolved through the years and the world has seen how terrorists have adapted to new situations including the use of information technology to perpetrate attacks against soft civilian targets.
8. Some participants shared their own experiences as victims of terrorist attacks. It was shown that coordinated efforts among government agencies can be effective in preventing attacks and mitigating their impacts. Such strategies resulted in the apprehension and eventual conviction of many of the perpetrators of acts of terrorism in recent years.
9. It was recognized that a strong international regime against terrorism is essential. Participants were of the view that domestic efforts to support internationally agreed security standards such as the ISPS Code and various UN security conventions and protocols as well as the signing of bilateral agreements on cross-border terrorism and other forms of regional cooperation arrangements, should be pursued by individual countries. Participants also cited the efforts of their respective governments to deal with terrorism in terms of establishing new institutions and/or strengthening existing ones to coordinate their overall national counter- terrorism efforts as well as enacting new legislation to enable such institutions to carry out their respective mandates. It was recommended that both domestic and international counter-terrorism measures must complement each other.
10. The Meeting emphasized the need to find an appropriate balance between improving transport security while ensuring the smooth flow of goods and people, as well as the need to avoid higher and more burdensome costs.
11.A copy of the country presentations by the Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand, Australia, the Republic of Korea, and Mongolia are attached as Annexes F, G, H, I, J, and K.

AGENDA ITEMS 3 AND 4: COUNTER-TERRORISM: TRANSPORT SECURITY ON THE ROAD AND THE RAIL

12. Noting the negative impact of terrorism on domestic and international trade, participants emphasized that domestic and international counter- terrorism efforts must be implemented with a view to protecting trade and ensuring transport security to ensure the safe movement of peoples and goods across countries. The vulnerability of rail and road systems to terrorist attacks was also highlighted.
13. Participants noted that ensuring transport security requires investment by governments and the private sector in terms of equipment and human resources. The implementation of innovative measures including the use of information technology to protect transport systems, particularly rail and road networks, against terrorist attacks was recommended. While it was recognized that approaches relating to transport security could vary, the general agreement was that the recent Madrid bombings demonstrated the need for countries to implement additional measures to protect rail and road infrastructure and services such as increasing patrols, expanding the security zones in stations and raising public awareness.
14. Concerns regarding the problems involved in facilitating the security of rail and road systems were also highlighted. These include the lack of coherent approach, insufficient cooperation, inadequate management of major disruptions with international consequences, need to harmonize local measures with internationally-agreed standards and the need for non-discriminatory security procedures.
15. Participants also identified possible actions that could be taken to ensure transport security such as enhanced cooperation among countries, increase resource allocation and support for research and development, training, networking and acquisition of equipment.
16. Russia, the European Union, and Japan presented papers under this agenda item. Attached as Annexes L, M, and N are their presentations.

AGENDA ITEM 5: COUNTER-TERRORISM: TRANSPORT SECURITY - IN THE AIR

17. Participants noted that the horrific events of 9/11, where commercial planes were used as actual weapons of destruction, permanently changed the way transport security in the air should be approached. Within this new paradigm, the participants identified key areas to enhance aviation security: cooperation between and among national stakeholders, information sharing, international cooperation, and capacity-building. 
18. Participants expressed the view that governments should work closely with other national stakeholders in order to encourage compliance with the stringent security measures that need to be put in place. Inasmuch as no single government can ensure transport security in the air, governments alone cannot do so without the active cooperation of the private sector (airlines and airport agencies).
19. Participants could not overemphasize the importance of sharing timely and appropriate information. They noted developments in information technology that could improve the ways in which ARF countries access, communicate, and disseminate information for greater effectiveness.
20.While different views were expressed on the effectiveness of deploying air marshals, there was general agreement about the importance of pre-flight measures in enhancing aviation security. Several participants informed the Meeting of the measures they have put in place, such as screening of passengers and luggages, background check on airport employees with access to restricted areas, posting of law enforcement personnel in passenger screening counters, and deployment of trained dogs and their handlers (K-9 teams).
21. The participants stressed the importance of adhering to international security standards, such as those set by ICAD.
22. The country presentations of Russia (Annex 0), Canada (Annex P), the United States (Annex Q), and Singapore (Annex R) are attached.

AGENDA ITEM 6: COUNTER-TERRORISM: TRANSPORT SECURITY: AT SEA

23. The participants considered sea transport infrastructure and services as probably among the most vulnerable targets for terrorist attacks under current circumstances. Attacks on ships and seaports could cause enormous damage in terms of human lives and property. The possibility that terrorists might shift their attacks from land to sea is a concern that should be addressed by the international community in a concerted manner. The participants expressed their full support to ARF efforts on maritime security.
24. At the domestic level, the participants presented the various measures adopted by their countries. These measures include the establishment of coordinating agencies looking into maritime security, enhancement of sea communications systems and port facilities, and the conduct of highly specialized training programs. New laws have also been put in place by their countries to regulate security matters on all types of transport. 
25. Recognizing the importance of intensifying bilateral, regional and ! international cooperation in maritime security, some countries are initiating agreements in critical areas such as customs cooperation and the conduct of border patrols. Some participants called for enhanced international : cooperation in maritime security similar to arrangements in the air transport services sector.
26. The participants raised the need to give serious attention to combat piracy and armed robbery at sea, and develop a multilateral framework for achieving cooperation in the region.
27. Some participants have taken measures to harmonize their domestic security policies with international standards such as the ISPS Code. The implementation of the ISPS Code is an important tool for ensuring transport security at sea. The participants are aware of the importance of meeting the deadline for its compliance.
28.The presentations of Russia (Annex S), Indonesia (Annex T), the United States (Annex U), China (Annex V), Malaysia (Annex W), and the Republic of Korea (Annex X) are attached.

AGENDA ITEM 7: INTER-MODAL/MULTI-MODAL TRANSPORTATION SECURITY

29. Participants noted that most activities to enhance transport security since 11 September 2001 have been planned and implemented within individual modes. Counter-terrorism in the aviation and maritime sectors -- though actively debated at present in ICAD and IMD -- remains focused on those individual modes. Rail security is largely focused on national-level initiatives.
30. Participants agreed that there is a need to ensure that the linkages among air and rail, rail and road, inland waterway and maritime transport are seen in the context of an inter-modal transport security framework. Such a framework will provide a coherent, cost-effective, and rational approach to transport security.
31. Participants were informed of some actions taken to promote inter-modal security: securing of key infrastructure (tunnels, bridges, terminals; establishment of standards for service providers, industry-wide consultations, and coordination of efforts between countries such as the U.S.-Canada Free and Secure Trade (FAST) initiative. 
32. Coordination on transport security and terrorism -be it among modes, private and public sector entities, or countries -necessitates some degree of policy transparency. Participants shared the view that enhanced information exchange is a key component of any inter-modal/multi-modal transport security framework.
33. The country presentations of European Union (Annex Y) and Canada (Annex Z) are attached.

AGENDA ITEM 8: PRESENTATION OF WORKING GROUP REPORTS AND RECOMMENDATIONS

34. The Meeting divided into Working Groups to tackle three different aspects of transport security, namely: policy recommendation, intelligence/information exchange, and counter-measures. The reports of the Working Groups on Policy Recommendation, Intelligence/Information Exchange, and Counter measures are attached as Annex AA, Annex BS, and Annex CC, respectively. The participants agreed that the recommendations of each working group serve as good starting points for forging a regional consensus on transport security issues.

AGENDA ITEM 9: CONSIDERATION OF DRAFT ARF STATEMENT ON TRANSPORT SECURITY

35.The Co-chairs' draft ARF Chairman's Statement on Combating International Terrorism in Transport is attached as Annex DD. The participants agreed to submit their comments to the Philippine and Russian co-chairs, through diplomatic channels, on or before 12 April 2004 to allow for the consolidation of comments in time for the ARF Senior Officials' Meeting in Yogyakarta in May.

AGENDA ITEM 10: PRESENTATION OF THE CO-CHAIRS' SUMMARY REPORT

36.The Philippines, on behalf of the Co-chairs, presented the draft Co-chairs' Summary Report of the 2nd ASEAN Regional Forum Inter-sessional Meeting on Counter-terrorism and Transnational Crime.

AGENDA ITEM 11: OTHER MATTERS

37. Mr. Mark Lloyd, Program Director of the International Law Enforcement Academy in Bangkok, briefed the participants about the Academy. ILEA aims to develop each country's criminal justice institutions by conducting training programs for mid-level police officers. Mr. Lloyd added that the opportunity for networking with counterparts from other countries enhances cooperation among the participating countries in these courses. A copy of Mr. Lloyd's speech and presentation is attached as Annex EE.
38. Mr. Dzulkefly Abdullah, Director of the Southeast Asia Regional Center for Counter-terrorism (SEARCCT) in Kuala Lumpur, circulated SEARCCT's information paper at Annex FF.
39.The Participants expressed the view that the meeting served as a useful platform for an exchange of views on counter-terrorism issues of common concern and agreed to propose to the ARF Senior Officials its continuation for another inter-sessional year.
40.The Participants expressed their appreciation to the Government of the Republic of the Philippines for the arrangements made for the meeting and for the warm hospitality accorded to the delegates