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G8: International co-operation strengthened in the fight against terrorism

Reference: 176/2004 - Date: 12 May 2004 09:01

UK Home Office Press Release

The need for co-operation and intelligence sharing to tackle international terrorism, organised crime and corruption was the focus of meetings in Washington of G8 Ministers for Justice and Home Affairs attended by Home Office Minister Hazel Blears today.

The third G8 summit since 9/11, which focused specifically on joint working to combat the continuing terrorist threat, saw all states agree the next steps necessary to protect the safety of their citizens.

Ms Blears said:

"It is gratifying that there is such clear commitment throughout the G8 to work together to tackle terrorism and international crime. Close co-operation is vital if we are to succeed against those people who seek to destroy our freedoms and way of life.

"Intelligence is the key to preventing and prosecuting serious crimes. The measures agreed today will have real benefits as we continually improve the practical ways we work alongside other countries against criminals who will not be stopped by geographical borders."

The G8 Ministers for Justice and Home Affairs endorsed recommendations for:

  • improved cross-border sharing of national security intelligence information to prevent and disrupt terrorist activity and to prosecute terrorists;
  • effective use of advanced investigative techniques such as interception and undercover agents;
  • an enhanced legal framework with states criminalising and prosecuting a range of terrorist activities, including recruitment to commit terrorist acts and provision of material support to terrorists. In the UK this has been achieved with the Terrorism Act 2000;
  • tackling passport fraud, with improved arrangements for involving Interpol for handling information on lost and stolen passports; and
  • faster operational action to tackle attacks on computer networks and faster co-operation on internet-related crimes, such as child pornography.

In addition, while in Washington, Hazel Blears had talks with US Secretary for Homeland Security Tom Ridge and met with US Attorney General John Ashcroft, discussing the ongoing UK / US counter-terrorism efforts.

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