UN Security Council reiterates call for enhanced passenger surveillance and data-sharing

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UN Security Council reiterates call for enhanced passenger surveillance and data-sharing
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In a statement on "threats to international peace and security", the Polish Presidency of the UN Security Council "recalls its noted concern about the close connection between international terrorism and transnational organized crime" and calls on all UN Member States "to enhance cooperation and strategies to prevent terrorists from benefiting from transnational organized crime," including by "securing their borders" and "strengthening of national, regional, and global systems to collect, analyse and exchange information, including law enforcement and intelligence information."

See: Statement by the President of the Security Council: threats to international peace and security(8 May 2018, pdf)

This includes a call for the development of national passenger surveillance systems, based on the collection and processing of API and PNR data:

"The Security Council further calls on Member States to prevent the movement of terrorists by effective national border controls and controls on issuance of identity papers and travel documents, and through measures for preventing counterfeiting, forgery or fraudulent use of identity papers and travel documents, and encourages Member States to fully utilize all existing tools, databases, and instruments... to strengthen international cooperation and responses to the threat posed by terrorism and transnational organized crime, and, in that regard, also recalls its decisions that Member States shall require airlines operating in their territories to provide advance passenger information (API) to the appropriate national authorities, in accordance with domestic law and international obligations, and develop the capability to collect, process and analyze, in furtherance of ICAO standards and recommended practices, passenger name record (PNR) data."(emphasis added)

The statement makes clear that:

Member States must ensure that any measures taken to counter terrorism must comply with all their obligations under international law, in particular international human rights law, international refugee law and international humanitarian law, underscores that respect for human rights, fundamental freedoms and the rule of law are complementary and mutually reinforcing with effective counter-terrorism measures and are an essential part of a successful counter-terrorism effort, and notes the importance of respect for the rule of law so as to effectively prevent and combat terrorism, and further notes that failure to comply with these and other international obligations, including under the Charter of the United Nations, is one of the factors contributing to increased radicalization to violence and fosters a sense of impunity."


PNR for all: UN Security Council mandates worldwide air travel surveillance and profiling, biometric collection, terrorist watchlists (Statewatch News Online, 8 January 2018)

Further reading

The UN Security Council, Global Watch Lists, Biometrics, and the Threat to the Rule of Law (Just Security, link)

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