1. The Committee on Political
Affairs and Democracy congratulates the rapporteur of the Committee
on Legal Affairs and Human Rights, Mr Liam Byrne, on his innovative
and well-documented report on a crucial and challenging issue which
lies at the very heart of any effective counter-terrorism strategy.
The committee supports by and large the proposed draft resolution
and draft recommendation.
2. The committee is aware that, although the title of the report
contains no direct indication of the type of terrorism it is dealing
with, the report focuses on Daesh and Al-Qaeda-inspired terrorism,
and does not address terrorism inspired by other ideologies. The
committee appreciates that the report avoids “making stigmatising generalisations
that portray whole groups of the population as responsible for the
acts of individuals”, in line with Assembly Resolution 2090 (2016) on combating international terrorism while protecting
Council of Europe standards and values.
3. In this context, the committee believes that the concept of
shared values and ethical traditions common to both the European
Convention on Human Rights (ETS No. 5) and Islam put forward by
the report is a promising avenue worth being further explored and
actively promoted. The Assembly should be fully involved in this
4. The committee fully shares the conclusion of the report that
the importance of the communication issue in the fight against terrorism
should not be underestimated. It therefore welcomes the proposal
contained in the draft recommendation that the Council of Europe
should play, via its appropriate mechanisms, a greater role in gathering
member States’ experience and best practice in this field, thus
confirming its indispensable role in the fight against terrorism.
5. The committee proposes some amendments to the draft resolution
and draft recommendation aimed at strengthening the message of the
report, making the language used more consistent with previous Assembly documents,
and ensuring that the Assembly is fully involved in future work
on the issue.