According to the Global Terrorism Index 2023, South Asia remains one of the regions most impacted by terrorism. In recent years, concerns related to radicalization, violent extremism, and returning foreign terrorist fighters (RFTFs) within the country have been growing. Therefore, enhancing national capacities to respond to these challenges is a matter of priority.
At the international level, the Seventh Review of the UN Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy (A/RES/75/291) stressed the importance of adopting a comprehensive and whole-of-government approach to preventing and countering terrorism. For example, Member States are called upon to strengthen their criminal justice systems and develop prosecution, rehabilitation and reintegration strategies for RFTFs and their families.
As part of its efforts to respond to this call, UNODC delivered, in close cooperation with the National Counter Terrorism Centre (NCTC) of Maldives, a train-the-trainer workshop on the management of complex terrorism cases including those related to RFTFs on 13-15 February 2023 in Male. Bringing together over 30 Maldivian criminal justice and law enforcement officers, the objective of the event was to strengthen technical and operational capacities in criminal justice processes. The workshop introduced participants to the latest standards and tools related to the effective management of terrorism-related cases while also taking into account gender and age dimensions. During the event, special attention was also paid to handling and prevent terrorism online - a growing concern in the context of violent extremism.
Over the course of the two-day workshop, sessions addressed both theoretical and practical exercises. The active discussions helped to raise participants’ awareness, especially to the challenges experienced by different actors within the Maldivian criminal justice system. During the interactive segment, participants highlighted the importance of undergoing similar training in the future to further strengthen their knowledge and expertise in preventing violent extremism and managing complex terrorism cases.
The training was implemented under the framework of the project “Support to Addressing the Risk of Terrorism and to Increasing Security in the Maldives”, funded by the European Union.
Additional information: UNODC Handbook on investigation, prosecution and adjudication of complex terrorist cases for South and South-East Asia