Progress on the UNICRI initiative for the protection of vulnerable targets
by enhancing private and public sector cooperation
While the international community is facing new threats posed by transnational terrorism, new worldwide synergies between public and private sectors to protect vulnerable targets need to be created. This was the objective of the brainstorming session that took place on 6th and 7th November at the United Nations Interregional Crime and Justice Research Institute - UNICRI - Headquarters.
Many possible targets of terrorist attacks are owned or managed by the private sector. The sharing of information, expertise, best practices and intelligence between the private and the public sector is therefore crucial.
Furthermore, while the public sector is responsible for providing and validating security arrangements, private companies can provide technology and solutions.
The brainstorming session gathered together experts and representatives from public and private sectors in the following countries; Australia, Austria, Belgium, France, Indonesia, Italy, Jamaica, Malaysia, Portugal, Russia, Spain, Switzerland, United Kingdom, and the US.
The Under-Secretary General for Safety and Security of the United Nations, Sir David Veness said, "The brainstorming represented a unique opportunity to progress cooperation aimed at reducing the vulnerability of many targets to the risk of terrorism."
Priority was given to the protection of crowded open public places such as tourist facilities, historical locations and recreational venues.
The session integrated ideas from experts allowing them to define the fields in which private and public cooperation is needed. It traced a roadmap to strengthen cooperation between the two sectors and the innovative ways and means of putting the strategy into practice.
UNICRI operates within the framework of the Counter-Terrorism Implementation Task Force of the United Nations (CTITF). Leading the group on protecting vulnerable targets, the Institute, together with the UN Department for Safety and Security and InterPol, acts as a laboratory of ideas in support of the international community.
The session contributed to the development of innovative ways to improve information flows between public and private sectors, increasing the capacity of each to protect vulnerable targets and the establishment of a more comprehensive counter-terrorism policy.
At the end of the session, Mr. Sandro Calvani, UNICRI Director, stressed the importance of creating networks between different realities: "This initiative that UNICRI has launched highlights the importance of private/public partnership, and it is very encouraging to see the participation of many prominent private companies, as well as respected public institutions. This is indicative that there is a strong will to reach a common goal, and this is the first step to success."