This week's "Photo of the Week" comes to us from U.S. Embassy Istanbul Photographer Aydan Yurdakul and shows U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton delivering remarks at the Global Counterterrorism Forum in Istanbul, Turkey, on June 7, 2012. Launched by Secretary Clinton on September 22, 2011, the Global Counterterrorism Forum (GCTF) is a multilateral counterterrorism body with 30 founding members (29 countries plus the EU) from around the world. It provides a unique platform for senior counterterrorism policymakers and experts from around the world to work together to identify urgent needs, devise solutions, and mobilize resources for addressing key counterterrorism challenges. With its primary focus on capacity building in relevant areas, the GCTF aims to increase the number of countries capable of dealing with the terrorist threats within their borders and regions.
During her remarks, Secretary Clinton said, "In recent years, the international community has made important strides in the fight against violent extremism in all its forms. We've worked together to disrupt terrorist financing; pass new and more effective counterterrorism laws; tighten border, aviation and maritime security; and improve international coordination. Over the past decade, more than 120,000 suspected terrorists have been arrested around the world, and more than 35,000 have been convicted. Usama bin Ladin is dead, al-Qaida's core leadership ranks have been devastated, and many of its affiliates have lost key operatives. Our citizens are safer because of the work we have done together."
Secretary Clinton continued, "Just as the threat we face crosses borders and oceans, so must our response. We need a strategic, comprehensive approach to counterterrorism that integrates both military and civilian power that uses intelligence, law enforcement, diplomacy, development, humanitarian assistance, and every possible partner and asset."
You can read more about the Global Counterterrorism Forum and the Department of State's Bureau of Counterterrorism at www.state.gov/j/ct/index.htm.