UN official: Terrorists using pandemic to stoke extremism


The U.N. counter-terrorism chief warned Tuesday that terrorists are exploiting the COVID-19 pandemic and appealing to new “racially, ethnically and politically motivated violent extremist groups.”

Vladimir Voronkov spoke at the U.N. Security Council’s 20th anniversary commemoration of the pivotal resolution to fight terrorism adopted after the 9/11 attacks on the United States — and six days after a violent assault on the U.S. Capitol by a pro-Trump mob.

He said that throughout the past two decades, “the threat of terrorism has persisted, evolved and spread.”

Al-Qaida, which was responsible for the 9/11 attacks that killed almost 3,000 people from 90 countries, is still proving resilient despite the loss of numerous leaders, Voronkov said. The Islamic State extremist group, which lost its self-declared caliphate in Iraq and Syria, is still carrying out attacks in the two countries “and seeking to reconstitute an external operations capability.”

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Source: AP News