UNODC launches a new train-the-trainers manual for South and South-East Asia on the investigation and prosecution of foreign terrorist fighters

UNODC's Terrorism Prevention Branch (UNODC/TPB) has developed a new training manual entitled  Investigation, Prosecution and Adjudication of Foreign Terrorist Fighter Cases for South and South-East Asia. The manual is the product of a multi-year project to build the specialized legal capacity of criminal justice officers of Member States including Bangladesh, Indonesia, Malaysia, Maldives, Philippines and Sri Lanka.

Foreign terrorist fighters continue to pose a threat to the international community, with South and South East Asia having been identified as one of the regions used as a recruitment ground, transit point and hide away by extremist groups. It is imperative that coordination across borders is further enhanced in order to tailor the most appropriate criminal justice response in countering the threat of foreign terrorist fighters. 

Responding to this phenomenon, UNODC/TPB designed the manual to provide guidance on international legal instruments against activities related to foreign terrorist fighters as well as techniques for digital investigation and evidence collection, especially concerning digital devices and social media. While the manual and its case studies are tailored for the South and South-East Asia region, its contents can be utilized in any jurisdiction seeking guidance to address the threat of foreign terrorist fighters. Furthermore, the manual includes an entire module on adult learning methodologies that endeavors to provide readers with best practices to design and deliver their own training programs related to countering the threat of foreign terrorist fighters.

 The manual was first introduced in the winter of 2018 to UNODC/TPB training audiences at workshops in Kuala Lumpur, Madrid, Tokyo and Washington D.C. In addition, it has been adapted to the UNODC/TPB online training platform, with registration for the first courses to open in the spring of 2019. The manual has now been made available for wider distribution.

The publication of the manual was conducted under UNODC/TPB's Global Project on "Strengthening the Capacity of South and South-East Asia Countries to Prevent and Counter Violent Extremism and Foreign Terrorist Fighters through Effective Criminal Justice Responses" and was funded by the Government of Japan.