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The ethical challenges of implementing counterterrorism measures and the role of the OSCE

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The United Nations established a counterterrorism mechanism in the form of the Counterterrorism Committee when it adopted Security Council Resolution 1373 (2001). The Committee has so far worked with regional organizations and individual states in capacity building efforts to augment local counterterrorism abilities. However, ethical bottlenecks remain. The problem of ethics arises when laws lack legitimacy regarding criminality and state power and when they diverge from the rule of law and good governance. Regional organizations are keenly placed to ensure that states adopt legitimate counterterrorism measures, thus avoiding ethical bottlenecks. By working with states to maintain the moral high ground, regional organizations such as the OSCE can prevent unnecessary compromises between human rights and security.


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