The United Kingdom (UK) has reaffirmed its commitment to combat terrorism and work with partners to tackle the enduring and evolving threat after launching its revised counter-terrorism strategy.
Estelle Sackey, a Communications and Public Affairs officer at the British High Commission in Abuja disclosed this in a statement on Friday.
The aim of CONTEST, the UK’s counterterrorism strategy, is to reduce the risk from terrorism to the UK, its citizens, and interests overseas, so that people can go about their lives freely and with confidence, according to the statement.
The UK Home Office officials conducted a comprehensive review of evidence on the terrorist threat and of the UK’s strategic response to inform this revised strategy, it added.
- Fee hike: Minister cautions against disrupting academic calendar
- Inside story of Bauchi community, where First Lady was trapped
The latest version of the CONTEST framework empowers UK government departments, devolved administrations, local authorities, frontline emergency services, intelligence agencies, and other partners, to work together to counter terrorism.
“Our global allies, and independent experts, recognise the core CONTEST Framework – Prevent, Pursue, Protect and Prepare – as world-leading.
“The UK continues to work with partners and colleagues in Nigeria to foster greater collaboration, share learning, and deliver together against a common threat,” the statement said it part.
Speaking at the CONTEST launch event held in Abuja, British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Richard Montgomery was quoted as saying: “A terrorist threat can emerge suddenly and grow rapidly. To enable us to respond, we must systematically build on our counterterrorism partnerships.
“The UK is looking to increase its diplomatic and political interventions in support of our CT objectives wherever we can, both to support operational activity and to support our key partners. That’s why I was delighted to host partners and colleagues of this community, to share the UK’s CONTEST strategy, as a way to bring people together to build stronger relationships and explore opportunities for collaboration.
“As President (Bola Ahmed) Tinubu said in New York, the entire region faces a protracted battle against violent extremists. Only together, can we address this threat.”
The UK government updated the Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development, and Foreign Policy (IR), in March 2023. That document sets out the UK’s overarching national security and international strategy. Terrorism is one of the threats covered by that strategy and CONTEST outlines the UK’s response to it in further detail.
Since the last version of CONTEST in 2018, concerted counterterrorism efforts by the UK and key allies have largely been successful in driving down risk by suppressing the most serious terrorist threats.