Tuesday, December 13, 2016

UN Anti-Terrorism Resolution Targets Cultural Property Trafficking

A United Nations resolution aimed at cementing police and judicial cooperation in the fight against terrorism unanimously passed the Security Council yesterday.

Resolution 2322's language, in part, focuses on cultural property trafficking. The adopted text states:

"Particularly concerned at the growing involvement of terrorist groups, especially in areas of conflict, in the destruction and the trafficking in cultural property and related offences, and recognizing the indispensable role of international cooperation in crime prevention and criminal justice responses to combat such trafficking and related offences in a comprehensive and effective manner,
"Urges States to develop, including, upon request, with the assistance of UNODC [UN Office on Drugs and Crime] and in close cooperation with UNESCO [United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization] and INTERPOL, broad law enforcement and judicial cooperation in preventing and combating all forms and aspects of trafficking in cultural property and related offences that benefit or may benefit terrorist or terrorist groups, and to introduce effective national measures at the legislative and operational levels where appropriate, and in accordance with obligations and commitments under international law and national instruments, to prevent and combat trafficking in cultural property and related offences, including considering to designate such activities that may benefit terrorist or terrorist groups, as a serious crime in accordance with article 2 of the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime [“Serious crime” shall mean conduct constituting an offence punishable by a maximum deprivation of liberty of at least four years or a more serious penalty]."

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