SCO hosts first joint online counter-terrorism exercise in China

China Military Online
Zhang Tao

  XIAMEN, Oct. 15 (ChinaMil) -- The "Xiamen -2015" online counter-terrorism exercise, jointly hosted by relevant authorities of member states of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization(SCO), was successfully held on October 14, 2015, in the southeastern Chinese coastal city of Xiamen, Fujian province. This is the first joint online exercise to counter terrorists hosted by the SCO.

  Based on the “Cooperation Program to Combat Terrorism, Separatism and Extremism in 2013-2015”, the Council of Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure (RATS) of the SCO established a cyber expert group on September 20, 2013, to strengthen pragmatic cooperation of the SCO member states in the fight against online activities of terrorism, separatism and extremism.

  To further enhance mutual trust and strengthen law enforcement cooperation in the field of cyber counter-terrorism, the SCO RATS Council passed the Resolution No. 386 on April 10, 2015 and decided to hold cyber anti-terrorism exercises in Xiamen, China.

  The main purpose of the exercise is to improve the cooperation mechanism used to identify and prevent the use of the Internet for terrorism, separatism and extremism among SCO member states;the exercise also aims to help member states to exchange the legal procedures, organizational and technical capacity and workflow in combating terrorists who use the Internet to conduct activities of terrorism, separatism and extremism.

  The design of the exercise is: an international terrorist organization published information of terrorism, separatism and extremism on websites, forums and social networks of the SCO member states to stimulate extremists lurking in member states to perform violent activities. To eradicate the threat of cyber terrorism and safeguard regional security, the SCO RATS Council launched a joint operation against online terrorism by coordinating member states in identifying and cleaning online terrorist incitement information, cracking down on terrorists lurking in SCO member states.

  During the exercise, authorities of the SCO member states identified incitement information published by the terrorist organization on websites and social networks under the organization and coordination of SCO RATS Council through joint action in a timely manner. In accordance with their respective laws and regulations and procedures, the member states disposed of terrorist information, identified the information of publishers and the event venue, arrested all the suspects and finally eliminated online terrorist threat.

  Delegations participating in the exercise all speak highly of the exercise. They believe that this exercise fully reflects the important role of SCO RATS Council in coordinating joint action among member states. The exercise examined the effectiveness of online counter-terrorism cooperation mechanism under the framework of the SCO, demonstrated the legal provisions, workflow, technology and law enforcement capacity of member states in identifying, handling and countering online terrorist activities.

  At the same time, the exercise also further enhanced mutual trust among SCO member states. This exercise will further improve the level of cooperation in the field of combating terrorism of authorities in SCO member states to effectively safeguard regional security and stability.

  Delegations of relevant authorities of SCO member states and SCO RATS Council jointly participated in this exercise. Zhang Xinfeng, director of the SCO RATS Council, acted as the chief commander of this exercise.


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