Azerbaijan maintained its strong counterterrorism cooperation with the United States and actively opposed terrorist organizations seeking to move people, money, and materiel through the Caucasus region, says the “Country Reports on Terrorism 2016” of the US Department of State, posted on its website July 20.
“The country remained focused on counterterrorism efforts that included prosecuting individuals under statutes related to terrorism, arresting foreign terrorist fighters returning to Azerbaijan from conflicts abroad, and conducting special operations against those the government said were planning terrorist attacks,” says the report.
Azerbaijan indicated its continued strong willingness to counter ISIS by sharing information, working to disrupt the flow of foreign terrorist fighters to Iraq and Syria, and countering illicit funding of terrorist groups in those countries, according to the report.
“Senior government leaders, including the heads of the Caucasus Muslim Board and the State Committee for Work with Religious Associations, took public steps to counter ISIS and al-Qa’ida ideology,” says the report. “They and other senior government representatives repeatedly condemned international terrorist attacks that occurred during 2016.”
On September 17, Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev, and other leaders attending the Commonwealth of Independent States Heads of State Council meeting in Bishkek, Kyrgyz Republic, jointly approved a program on cooperation in the fight against terrorism and other forms of violent extremism for 2017-2019. President Aliyev also participated in discussions at the NATO Warsaw Summit on July 8-9 on measures to counter violent extremism, says the report.
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