The eighth meeting of the Pacific Islands Forum Working Group on Counter-Terrorism was held in Suva, Fiji on 5 June 2012.The Working Group meets annually and allows Members and regional law enforcement secretariats to discuss national, regional and international developments in counter-terrorism, including transnational organised crime, human trafficking and people smuggling, money-laundering and nuclear security issues.
The Working Group meeting provided Member countries the further opportunity to identify national constraints in ensuring compliance with international counter-terrorism standards, and to consider available solutions, resources and models to support their respective efforts.
In opening the 2012 meeting of the Working Group, Deputy Secretary General Andie Fong Toy of the Forum Secretariat observed that "the Working Group, with the support of the Forum Secretariat, has been at the forefront of coordinating regional counter-terrorism initiatives. Support through policy and legislative development as well as capacity building activities continues to be undertaken both regionally and bilaterally."
Concerns raised by Member countries on a broad range of experience and perspectives on counter-terrorism also reflected the views of various police services, immigration departments, offices of attorney-general and justice ministries.
The Working Group continued to support the recommendation of Exercise Ready Pasifika II for Pacific island countries to hold their own national-level counter-terrorism exercises and acknowledged the continuation of counter-terrorism capacity-building assistance from Australia and New Zealand and other donors.
The Working Group also had the opportunity to learn about the counter-terrorism related work of the United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime and the Asia-Pacific Group on Money Laundering. The Working Group was supported with financial assistance from New Zealand, and was co-Chaired by New Zealand and the Forum Secretariat.