World Security Report2018-06-05 11:18:20
The UK government has published its revised Counter Terrorism Strategy for 2018.
UK Home Secretary has announced new counter-terrorism strategy
In a speech in central London, the Home Secretary has launched the government's new counter-terrorism strategy.
After the attacks in the UK last year the Prime Minister commissioned a root and branch review of our counter-terrorism strategy. And that is what we are publishing today.
The aim of this is to ensure that our response to terrorism is second to none and that we are doing everything within our power to prevent terror on our streets.
Our security and intelligence agencies are, right now, handling over 500 live operations, they have 3,000 ‘subjects of interest’.
And there are a further 20,000 people who have previously been investigated, so they may still pose a threat.
The biggest threat is from Islamist terrorism – including Al Qa’ida, but particularly from Daesh."
In our revised counter-terrorism strategy – known as CONTEST - I am outlining today how everyone can help.
CONTEST incorporates the lessons learnt from the attacks in 2017 and our responses to them.
It has been informed by the latest research and secret intelligence.
Ultimately, our approach is about ensuring that there are no safe spaces for terrorists.
No safe spaces internationally in which terrorist ideology can develop and from where complex attacks can be launched.
No safe spaces in the UK for terrorists to spread their vile views, or for them to plan and carry out attacks.
And no safe spaces online for terrorist propaganda and technical expertise to be shared, and for people to be radicalised in a matter of weeks.
First, we will work to disrupt threats earlier and we are bringing forward new legislation to enable us to do that.
We’ll intervene earlier in investigations.
There will be longer prison sentences and better management of terrorist offenders on release.
I’m grateful to the work of MI5 and the police in learning operational lessons from the 2017 attacks and also for the thoughtful independent oversight of David Anderson QC.
Second, we will continue to make sure counter-terrorism policing and our security and intelligence services have the support they need.
In the 2015 Spending Review, this government committed to spending more than £2 billion on counter-terrorism each year.
We’re giving counter-terrorism policing a £50 million increase in funding this year – to over three quarters of a billion pounds.
And we’re recruiting over 1,900 additional staff across the security and intelligence agencies to improve our response still further.
Third, we will work more closely with our international partners.
Because the UK cannot tackle terrorism alone.
Our co-operation with our Five Eyes partners, the EU, and other allies, will remain essential.
The UK is widely seen as a world leader in counter-terrorism strategy.
Many other countries around the world look to CONTEST, and to emulate our evolving approach.
Deepening our strong security alliances around the world will also be a major part of my job.
I’ve already had a number of meetings in Washington, Brussels and The Hague.
Tonight, I will be heading off to Luxembourg to discuss security issues with my European counterparts.
We have always been absolutely clear that although we voted to leave the European Union, we are as committed as ever to European security.
We want, and we need, a deep and special security partnership with the EU after we leave.
And the EU needs it too.
There is not a single European interior minister who wants to reduce the level of co-operation on security that we have now.
When the British people voted to leave the European Union, they were not voting for us to stop working with our European allies to keep everyone safe.
So it would be wrong and reckless for anyone to advocate any unnecessary reduction in this co-operation.
Fourth, we will work more closely with key partners outside of central government.
We are piloting new multi-agency centres in London, Manchester and the West Midlands, to bring together the widest range of partners and improve our understanding of those at risk of becoming involved in terrorism.
We will also increase our co-operation with the private sector.
As someone with a private sector background myself, I understand that government cannot deal with these kinds of challenges alone.
I’m committed to improving how we work with businesses across a range of issues.
That includes faster alerts for suspicious packages, improving security at crowded places across the UK and reducing the vulnerability of our critical national infrastructure. And we must also get better at harnessing private sector and academic innovation.
New detection techniques, data analytics and machine learning all have the potential to dramatically enhance our counter-terrorism capabilities.
Fifth, we must work together to get terrorist material off the internet.
Terrorists exploit the online world in many different ways.
They use it to spread their poisonous message, and to radicalise and recruit others.
To share expertise on harmful materials.
And even to plan and facilitate attacks.
Under the former Home Secretary, we established the first Global Internet Forum for Counter-Terrorism – an international, industry-led group to fight terrorist use of the internet.
This brings together some of the biggest technology companies, and has brought about the removal of terrorist online material at a far greater scale and speed.
As just one example, in the first quarter of this year, Facebook took action against 1.9 million pieces of Daesh and Al-Qa’ida content.
But there is of course much more to do particularly as terrorists move to exploit smaller platforms.
We must continue to deepen and strengthen our collaboration with these key partners, and to encourage them to do more.
It is one of the reasons I will be travelling to Silicon Valley later this week to do just that.
The sixth and final approach is to do more to prevent people from becoming terrorists or supporting terrorism.
The Prevent strategy will remain a vital part of our counter-terrorism work.
You can download the strategy document click here
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