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Last Updated: Saturday, 31 January, 2004, 02:13 GMT
UN votes on tough terror measures

By Susannah Price
BBC correspondent, United Nations

The United Nations Security Council has voted unanimously to name and shame countries that fail to report on their efforts to fight global terrorism.

It passed by 15-0 a resolution aimed at strengthening sanctions against al-Qaeda, Taleban and related groups.

Last year, a UN committee said stronger measures might be needed to compel UN member states to help fight terrorism.

It is hoped a threat of being publicly named will encourage governments to enforce sanctions against such groups.

Osama bin Laden
The measures aim to limit the activities of groups such as al-Qaeda
More than half of the UN's member states have not submitted reports on what they are doing to limit the activities of these groups through freezing assets, a travel ban, or arms embargoes.

This latest resolution means the UN's al-Qaeda monitoring committee will be able to circulate a list of countries that do not submit a report by the end of March.

They will also publicise the reason behind the failure, whether it is a question of resources or political will.

The chairman of the monitoring committee and sponsor of the resolution, Ambassador Heraldo Munoz of Chile, said this would send a strong signal.

The new resolution calls on governments to look out for al-Qaeda or associated groups, trying to channel funds through different means, such as the informal banking system.

But it does not include any real new sanctions.

American diplomats said they wanted to improve the implementation of measures in the original resolution before taking any further steps.



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