UNODC training workshop on the fight against terrorism in the Sahel

    This activity was financed by Denmark and the Netherlands

The fight against terrorism has become a shared imperative for all G5 Sahel heads of state, to strengthen the security of their states and promote peace and development in the Sahel, but also to ensure the security of their populations. Addressing terrorist threats in the Sahel requires a coordinated response, in line with international standards and norms regarding human rights. Indeed, violations on the part of law enforcement officials could lead to radicalization of populations in countries affected by terrorism.

To strengthen the capacity of the States in the Sahel to effectively integrate human rights in the fight against violent extremism and terrorism, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), the G5 Sahel Permanent Secretariat and the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) organized a training workshop on 11 and 12 December 2017 in Nouakchott, Mauritania.

The main objective of this workshop was to strengthen the capacities of the G5 Sahel Permanent Secretariat to better integrate human rights into their work. The training brought together 14 participants from the Permanent Secretariat and the G5 Sahel National Coordinating Structures.


Through presentations and practical exercises, participants acquired the necessary specific skills and became fully aware of the impact of terrorism and the fight against terrorism on the enjoyment of all human rights. The workshop also allowed participants and experts to discuss the specific challenges faced in their efforts to promote human rights in the fight against terrorism in the Sahel.

This training is a joint initiative by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in Mauritania and UNODC. It was carried out as part of a project to support the Sahel and neighboring countries in the establishment of a legal framework against terrorism, and in strengthening related judicial cooperation.

It is also part of the United Nations Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy, adopted in 2006 by the General Assembly, which recognizes that "effective counter-terrorism measures and the protection of human rights are complementary and mutually reinforcing objectives ". It reflects the will of States to ensure respect for human rights for all and the supremacy of the rule of law in the fight against terrorism.

This training is part of the UNODC Sahel Programme which aims to promote capacity building in the fight against terrorism and transnational organized crime by the authorities of the region through accessible, effective and accountable criminal justice systems. This partnership between UNODC and G5 Sahel is made possible through the support of Denmark and the Netherlands.

For more information:

UNODC and Terrorism Prevention in West and Central Africa

United Nations Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy

UNODC Sahel Programme