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2017 Kovalev Vienna OSCE conference2Nikolay Kovalev addresses OSCE counter-terrorism conference in Vienna, 23 May 2017.VIENNA, 24 May 2017 – In the wake of Monday’s terrorist attack in Manchester, the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly's Special Representative on Anti-Terrorism, Nikolay Kovalev (MP, Russian Federation), participated Tuesday in the OSCE-wide Counter-Terrorism Conference 2017, being held in Vienna this week on the theme Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism and Radicalization that Lead to Terrorism.

Opening his remarks with an expression of condolences to the people of the United Kingdom for the Manchester attack, which killed at least 22 people, including children, Kovalev noted that the tragedy recalls the urgency of developing effective counter-terrorist strategies that keep the citizens of the OSCE area safe.

“We must all work together in developing innovative, effective and co-operative counter-terrorism measures,” said Kovalev. “With last night’s tragedy in mind, I hope that we can have a constructive discussion on countering the phenomenon of extremist violence, which is one of the greatest common threats that we face today.”

He pointed out that in recent years the topic of countering terrorism has become one of the most pressing areas of work for the Parliamentary Assembly. “Combating terrorism is one of the most urgent areas of activity,” Kovalev said. “It is the most unifying theme, which unites the parliamentarians of all our countries in ensuring the safety of citizens of our states – ensuring their right to life.”

He highlighted a number of recent initiatives of the PA that have sought to seek common ground on anti-terrorism and share best practices, including the Parliamentary Conference on Combating International Terrorism, co-organized by the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly and the Interparliamentary Assembly of the Commonwealth of Independent States in St. Petersburg on 28 March, and the PA’s “OSCE Security Policy – Female Perspectives” conference held in Vienna on 23 March.

Other topics highlighted by the Special Representative in his remarks included the methodology of terrorist recruitment, countering violent extremism and radicalization that lead to terrorism, and the theme of violent computer games as possible precursors of violent extremism among young people.

His full remarks are available (in Russian) here.

Kovalev was appointed OSCE PA Special Representative on Anti-Terrorism in November 2013. He has been a Member of the State Duma (Low Chamber) of the Federal Assembly (Parliament) of the Russian Federation since 1999, having served as Chairman of the Committee on Security, the Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, the Anti-Corruption Commission of the State Duma, and currently as Deputy Chairman of the State Duma Commission on the Law Support of Defence Industry of the Russian Federation.

He also serves as Deputy Head of the Russian Delegation to the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly.