Philippines joins United Nations fight against financing of terrorism

 Teodoro Locsin Jr.

Affirming the Philippines’ commitment to fighting terrorism, Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro L. Locsin Jr. has announced the Philippines’ co-sponsorship of United Nations Security Council (UNSC) Resolution 2462 on combating the financing of terrorism.

Speaking before the UNSC last March 28  at the United Nations in New York, Locsin believed that since “money is the lifeblood of terrorism,” the Philippines has implemented initiatives to combat the illicit financing of terrorism.

He said that the Philippines has by law defined terrorist financing as a separate crime and is working on amendments to the Human Security Act to address the exploitation of cyberspace for terrorism.

The Philippines has likewise adopted the 2018-2022 National Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism Strategy.

Locsin noted that while remittance agencies have been used as a channel for terrorist financing, the challenge is to balance the requirements of counter-terrorism and the needs of overseas Filipino workers, as remittances account for 9.8 percent of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP).

He also cited the need to monitor funds going to non-profit organizations and the relationship between terrorism and the illegal drug trade.

Locsin stressed that the Philippine counter-terrorism efforts are anchored on respecting human rights because of the country’s overriding responsibility to protect the law-abiding against the lawless and the innocent against those threatening their safety and well-being.