Morocco: New Committee to Implement UN Sanctions on Terrorism, Arms

In line with Morocco’s commitment to upholding UN security guidelines, the country’s capital is now home to a National Committee in charge of implementing UN Security Council Sanctions related to terrorism, arms proliferation, and their financing. 

The establishment of the new committee, which was officially inaugurated on January 5,  comes in the wake of Morocco’s commitments to the UN Security Council resolutions and the recommendations of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF).

The committee is chaired by Morocco’s Minister of Justice, Abdellatif Ouahbi, and consists of representatives from 15 governmental, judicial, security, and financial institutions.

During the inauguration ceremony, Ouahbi stressed that the committee’s mission is to strengthen the national counterterrorism system and the proliferation of weapons. He recalled his ministry’s successful operations in combating terrorism and money laundering.

With its mission set in line with Morocco’s counterterrorism approach, the committee’s work will mainly consist in combating illicit funding and meeting international standards in the legal system.

El Hassan Daki, the Public Prosecutor at the Court of Cassation and President of the Public Prosecution, reassured that the new entity “provides an answer to several legal problems resulting from the lack of an integrated operational and institutional framework for the execution of the Security Council’s financial sanctions.”

Daki emphasized the need for immediacy, effectiveness, and efficiency while executing UN sanctions; he also called for developing an action plan imbued with the FATF criteria.

He recalled Morocco’s achievements in combating money laundering, including 651 prosecutions in this crime.

The implementation of the new entity was enacted in article 32 of Law 12.18, amending and complementing the Penal Code and Law 43.05 related to the fight against money laundering.

In recent decades, Morocco implemented an anti-money laundering and anti-terrorism system that appears to be effective in several aspects.

Terrorism and its financing, however, remain a serious threat to the country despite significant efforts by Moroccan authorities. Threats mainly stem from Moroccan Foreign Terrorist Fighters (FTFs) whose members are estimated to be around 1600, according to a report issued by the Middle East and North Africa Financial Action Task Force in 2019.

Since 2002, Morocco has dismantled 2,009 terror cells. The country’s security services have arrested over 3,353 people for their alleged involvement in terrorist activities and prevented over 500 “bloody” terrorist plots.