Roundtable Discussion on “Keeping Up the Fight Against Terrorism during the COVID-19 Crisis”

On Thursday, 9 July 2020, Foreign Policy Community of Indonesia (FPCI) has successfully held a roundtable discussion on “Keeping Up the Fight Against Terrorism during the COVID-19 Crisis”. The impact of the COVID-19 to the national and global political, economy, health, and social landscapes have been dominating many discussion sessions lately, but to date, minimal attention has been directed towards the issue of security, particularly in regard to terrorism and other forms of violent extremism. There are, in fact, emerging waves of new cases related to acts of terror across the globe. Over the past following weeks, researchers and practitioners have been voicing out their concerns about a crack the pandemic may open to terror groups that seek to advance their causes. One researcher alerts that “terrorism is likely to morph into new shapes and forms. Terrorist groups have positioned themselves to exploit the opportunities of a post-COVID-19 world.”

At the global stage, our global leaders and policymakers should fully take into account the security risks that the COVID-19 brings to the world, and it is critical to make counterterrorism and the new forms of extremism as one of the top priorities in a post-pandemic global governance agenda. Looking to the future, some questions remain, how can we develop a competent multi-institutions intervention effort? How can we build an effective and well-coordinated international cooperation in counterterrorism? How can we strengthen the existing political and legal mechanisms in dealing with this particular issue at a global level? And how can global leadership empower localized efforts in dealing with acts of terror?

The discussion was moderated by Andini Effendi, an Indonesian Journalist featuring Comr. Gen. Boy Rafli Amar, Head of Indonesian National Counterterrorism Agency (BNPT); Dr. Noor Huda Ismail, Founder of the Institute for International Peace Building in Indonesia; Dr. Rommel C. Banlaoi, Chairman of the Philippines Institute for Peace, Violence & Terrorism Research; Dr. Joshua A. Geltzer, Executive Director of Georgetown University’s Institute for Constitutional Advocacy and Protection; and Leanne Close, Head at Counter-Terrorism Program Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI).

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