European Counterterrorist Efforts Since September 11: Political Will and Diverse Responses

CRS Report for Congress
European Counterterrorist Efforts:
Political Will and Diverse Responses
in the First Year After September 11
October 17, 2002
Paul Gallis, Coordinator
Specialist in European Affairs
Foreign Affairs, Defense, and Trade Division

Congressional Research Service ˜ The Library of Congress

European Counterterrorist Efforts:
Political Will and Diverse Responses
in the First Year After September 11
The attacks of September 11 prompted the Bush Administration to improve law
enforcement and other coordination between the United States and European
governments dealing with international terrorism. European governments have also
taken measures to enhance cooperation among themselves. Most notable are
European Union efforts to enhance cross-border sharing of intelligence and police
information, extend the reach of warrants, and strengthen external border controls.
Some European countries have a long history of fighting terrorism, and have
refined existing practices as part of their counterterror policy. Others with little
experience in combating terrorism are developing measures for the first time. Efforts
to fight terror include the disruption of terrorists’ financial networks, the emerging
EU regime for tracking asylum seekers, and arrest and trial of suspected terrorists.
However, some governments have been slow to accept the U.S. position that Al
Qaeda poses a significant new threat, and are correspondingly reluctant to approve
enhanced law enforcement measures, or are inattentive to their implementation.
These governments may believe that the United States is under a new threat, but that
the danger does not extend to their own societies, or that a more active role in the
fight would increase the likelihood that they would be targeted. Some governments
also have different evidentiary standards from their neighbors and the United States;
these governments may set the evidentiary bar very high before undertaking an
investigation or making an arrest.
Domestic political factors are influencing the debate in some countries over
terrorism, and raising concerns over religious and ethnic tolerance. Several
countries, such as Italy, Denmark, Austria, and the Netherlands, have popular
currents increasingly wary of or hostile to immigration. Some political parties in
these countries are using fear of terrorism to brand Moslems as extremists, and
attempting to restrict their immigration.
Resources available to governments also play an important role in the
counterterror effort. Absent a major terrorist attack on their own soil, some
governments lack the political support in their parliaments and among their
populations to divert resources from efforts to resolve social and economic problems
and towards greater security against terrorism.
The events of September 11 led to immediate and unprecedented European
efforts to cooperate with the United States in fighting terrorism. However, by early
2002 the emphasis placed by the Bush Administration on military action beyond
Afghanistan, and on strong support for the Sharon government in Israel in its conflict
with the Palestinians, began to raise doubts among some Europeans about the overall
U.S. approach to counterterrorism. There are concerns in Europe that the United
States is using the war against terrorism to pursue broader and more controversial
foreign policy goals.

Overview ........................................................1
Albania ..........................................................4
Belgium .........................................................7
Background ..................................................7
International Cooperation.......................................7
Counterterrorism Actions........................................8
Bosnia and Hercegovina...........................................11
Background .................................................11
Anti-Terror Policy: Implementation..............................12
Bulgaria ........................................................14
Croatia .........................................................17
Cyprus .........................................................18
Background .................................................18
Counterterrorism Since 9/11....................................20
Denmark ........................................................21
Background .................................................21
Counterterrorism Initiatives.....................................21
Estonia .........................................................24
Federal Republic of Yugoslavia......................................26
France ..........................................................27
Background .................................................27
A History of Combating Terrorism...............................27
Legislative and Political Responses after September 11...............28
Al Qaeda and France..........................................29
Active Steps of Policy Implementation............................30
Law Enforcement.........................................30
The Moussaoui Case......................................31
Extradition Cases: France and Algeria.........................32
Money Laundering........................................32
Immigration Policy.......................................33
Resources ...............................................34
Domestic and Foreign Policies and the Conflict Against Terrorism......34
Germany ........................................................37
In troduction .................................................37
Germany’s Own Experience with Terrorism........................38
Response to 9/11.............................................38

Domestic Actions.............................................39
Political Issues and Differences .................................40
Greece .........................................................45
Background .................................................45
Revolutionary Organization 17 November.........................45
Counterterrorism Efforts.......................................47
Counterterrorism Since 9/11....................................49
Other ......................................................49
Illegal Immigration/Border Controls..............................50
Ireland .........................................................52
Overview ...................................................52
Legal Responses and Cooperation Against Terrorism.................52
Immigration, Asylum, and Border Controls........................54
Italy .......................................................57
Background .................................................57
A History of Combating Terrorism...............................57
Legislative and Political Responses after September 11...............58
Al Qaeda and Italy............................................60
Active Steps of Policy Implementation............................60
Investigations and Arrests..................................60
Money Laundering and Illegal Assets.........................61
Illegal Immigration........................................62
Broad Factors Affecting Italian Policy.............................62
Latvia ..........................................................64
Lithuania .......................................................65
Lu x embourg .....................................................66
Background .................................................66
Banking Secrecy and Money Laundering..........................66
Macedonia ......................................................69
The Netherlands..................................................71
Background .................................................71
Response to 9/11.............................................71
Dutch Counterterrorism Initiatives...............................72
Romania ........................................................74
Background .................................................74
Romanian Counterterrorism Initiatives............................76
Slovakia ........................................................78
Slovenia ........................................................80

Spain ..........................................................82
Background .................................................82
Spain, EU and Immigration.....................................82
Spain and Al Qaeda...........................................83
Anti-Terror Policy: Implementation..............................84
Sweden .........................................................86
Response to 9/11.............................................86
Key Legislation..............................................87
Recent Actions...............................................88
Extradition of Egyptians...................................88
Camp X-Ray............................................89
Somali Swedes...........................................89
Arrest of 2 Palestinians....................................90
Armed Airline Passenger...................................90
Switzerland .....................................................91
Overview ...................................................91
Combating Terrorist Financing..................................91
Other Counterterrorist Efforts...................................92
Challenges ..................................................93
Turkey .........................................................96
Background .................................................96
Counterterrorism Since 9/11....................................97
Immigration/Border Controls....................................98
United Kingdom..................................................99
Overview ...................................................99
A History of Combating Terrorism...............................99
Britain’s Muslim Community and Al Qaeda.......................100
Law Enforcement post-September 11............................101
Legislative and Political Responses to September 11................101
Improving Counterterrorism Legislation......................102
Stemming Terrorist Financing..............................104
Tightening Immigration, Asylum, and Border Controls..........105
Enhancing Intelligence and Police Resources..................106
Political Considerations and the War on Terrorism..................107
The Council of Europe............................................108
European Union.................................................110
This report, in the form of memoranda, was originally prepared for Representative
Doug Bereuter and the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, and is
being made available to Congress as a whole with his permission.

European Counterterrorist Efforts:
Political Will and Diverse Responses
in the First Year After September 11
Overvi ew *
The attacks of September 11 prompted the Bush Administration to improve law
enforcement and other coordination between the United States and European
governments dealing with international terrorism. Many governments, after
discussions with the Administration, or on their own, quickly began to enact or
consider legislation intended to enhance their ability to investigate and suppress
terrorist activity.
The attacks on the United States of September 11 shocked the political
leadership in key European states, leading to new domestic measures to counter
terrorism. Most notable are European Union efforts to enhance cross-border
cooperation in sharing intelligence and police information, extend the reach of
warrants, and strengthen external border controls. Such measures had long been
resisted, given states’ concerns over surrendering elements of their sovereignty to
other countries or to the European Union.
The events of September 11 led to immediate and unprecedented efforts to
cooperate with the United States in fighting terrorism. However, by early 2002 the
emphasis placed by the Bush Administration on military action beyond Afghanistan
began to raise doubts among some Europeans about the overall U.S. approach to
counterterrorism. There are concerns in Europe that the United States is using the
war against terrorism to pursue broader and more controversial foreign policy goals.
Doubts are evident in some European countries about aspects of the conflict
against terrorism. Parts of the political spectrum in many European countries believe
that long-term economic and diplomatic initiatives should have an important role to
play in combating terrorism. In some countries, debates have sharpened over the
balance between security and civil liberties. There is also some criticism of the
balance in the United States between security and civil liberties that has hindered
cooperation; European concerns about the possible use of military tribunals in this
country, treatment of detainees at Guantanamo Bay, and the death penalty are
currently affecting working relationships with the United States. Several countries
with significant Moslem populations have governments that are concerned about new
enforcement measures that could be construed as targeting minority populations.

*Coordinated by Paul Gallis, Specialist in European Affairs, Foreign Affairs, Defense, and
Trade Division, CRS. October 17, 2002.

Coupled with concern over U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East, these views may
be eroding Administration efforts to persuade several European governments to
follow elements of its counterterror policy.
A wide range of response is evident in Europe in the effort to subdue terrorism.
Some countries, such as France, Italy, Germany, Spain, and Turkey have a long
history of fighting terrorism. In each, there is an existing political sentiment about
measures appropriate for disrupting terrorist networks and bringing terrorists to
justice. Long traditions resting on accepted practices affecting civil liberties,
securing public order, and protecting their populations are influencing political
debate over combating terrorism.
Some governments have accelerated the pace of internal efforts to combat
terrorism. The disruption of terrorists’ financial networks, strengthening of border
controls, and arrest and trial of suspected terrorists, steps sometimes taken in
coordination with the United States or other countries, are but several examples of
such efforts. Other examples are the EU’s emerging regime for tracking asylum
seekers, France’s commitment of increased police resources to combat terrorism, and
Britain’s expanded number of individuals on its terrorist list, in part at U.S. and UN
There are also areas of concern. Some governments have been slow to accept
the U.S. position that Al Qaeda poses a significant new threat, and are
correspondingly reluctant to approve enhanced law enforcement measures, or are
inattentive to their implementation. These governments may believe that the United
States is under a new threat, but that the danger does not extend to their own
societies, or that a more active role in the fight would increase the likelihood that
they would be targeted. Such sentiment, for example, is evident in the Baltic states,
where significant acts of terrorism are uncommon, but is also heard in countries such
as Germany, where the effects of terrorism are well-known. The EU as an entity has
relatively weak law enforcement capabilities; there, some national police services,
despite initial steps taken on paper by political leaders, remain reluctant to share
investigative and intelligence information. And all governments face significant
hurdles in combating money-laundering, whether tied to organized crime or to
terrorist networks.
Domestic political factors are influencing the debate in some countries over
terrorism, and raising concerns over religious and ethnic tolerance. Several European
societies, such as Italy, Denmark, Austria, and the Netherlands, have popular currents
increasingly wary of or hostile to immigration. Some political parties in these
countries are using fear of terrorism to brand Moslems as extremists, and to restrict
their immigration. A version of this sentiment is evident in Bosnia-Hercegovina,
already tense and unstable, where some Serbian Orthodox political leaders are
seeking to undermine the legitimacy of Bosniak (Moslem) organizations involved in
building civic institutions.
Resources available to governments play an important role in the anti-terrorism
effort. For example, some government officials interviewed by CRS voice a desire
to strengthen airline security through improved technologies and more personnel, or
to increase capabilities for inspection at ports to prevent the movement of weapons

of mass destruction in container vessels. Budget constraints are in many cases
preventing them from doing so.
Since early 2002, a number of European governments, while not reducing their
domestic law-enforcement efforts, have begun to distance themselves from U.S.
leadership in the international conflict against terrorism. Broader issues of foreign
policy are at play. Many NATO allies are uneasy with the Bush Administration’s
strong support for the Sharon government in Israel and its treatment of the
Palestinians. They do not share the Administration’s view that Prime Minister
Sharon’s use of robust military force contributes to weakening terrorism, or even that
his policy has much in common with the war on terrorism; they believe instead that
the Sharon government’s policies may be fueling terrorism. They bristle at
suggestions from some journalists in the United States that their criticism of Israel
is evidence of anti-Semitism.1
Similarly, some governments view President Bush’s reference to Iran, Iraq, and
North Korea as an “axis of evil” as an indication that the United States is using the
issue of terrorism to garner support for “pre-emptive” military measures intended to
eliminate threats that most European governments today regard as unproven. The
threat from the production of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, for possible use
against the United States or other countries, falls into this category. Key allies
believe that any near-term conflict with Iraq could greatly undermine the
international coalition against terrorism and further inflame the Arab-Israeli conflict.
In general, most European governments continue to believe that Iran and Iraq, for
example, should presently be dealt with through diplomatic, political, and economic
measures. The European Union is pursuing an initiative to engage Iran through a
policy of trade and investment.
While European governments may wish to implement stronger efforts at home
to quell terrorism, several do not wish to be seen as following an American plan for
doing so, above all if that plan is linked to a broader U.S. policy for militarily
confronting Middle Eastern countries or political entities that the Administration
believes to be supporting terrorist networks.

1See, for example, John Lloyd, “Rowing Alone,” Financial Times, section II. Aug. 3-4,


Foreign Islamic extremists may have infiltrated Albania over the past decade,
but the Albanian government has been working with the United States to remove
their presence. A majority of the Albanian population is nominally Muslim, but
secular. In the aftermath of the collapse of communism in Albania in 1991, several
Islamic humanitarian and cultural organizations established themselves in Albania.2
Osama bin Laden is reported to have visited Albania in 1994. At the same time, the
post-communist leadership in Albania and Albanians in general have remained
staunchly pro-American and not receptive to radical Islamic fundamentalism.
Following the September 11, 2001 attacks, the Albanian government announced that
it would put all of Albania’s assets and facilities (including airspace, ports, and
airports) at the disposal of the United States and allied countries in their fight against
global terrorism.
Albania’s close cooperation with the United States in counter-terrorism efforts
pre-dates the September 11 attacks by some years. Reportedly working in close
contact with and even at the behest of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and
U.S. intelligence services, Albania’s Socialist government authorities have captured
and extradited over one dozen suspected Islamic terrorists (from Egypt, Iraq, Jordan,
Syria, and elsewhere in the Middle East and Africa) since 1998.3 Terrorist threats in
the past have caused the temporary closure of the U.S. embassy in Albania and the
cancellation of planned visits to Albania by senior U.S. officials.
For the past several years, the State Department has reported that Albania’s state
of development – especially its poor internal security, lax border controls, and high
rates of crime – has produced an environment conducive to terrorist activity and
attractive to Islamic extremist groups. Some foreign Islamic extremists used Albania
as a safe haven and even gained Albanian citizenship. Some former Albanian4
officials were thought to maintain links with these foreign extremists. The State
Department has charged that various Islamic non-governmental organizations which
support terrorist groups and their activities continue to maintain a presence in
Albania. In addition, ethnic Albanian extremist groups, whose memberships and
support structures cross regional borders, have conducted insurgent attacks in
southern Serbia and in Macedonia in recent years.
In the aftermath of September 11, some international media and even political
leaders from neighboring states have alleged that ethnic Albanian “terrorists”

2“Bin Laden and the Balkans: the Politics of Anti-Terrorism,” International Crisis Group
Balkans Report No. 119, November 9, 2001, p. 5.
3Asian Wall Street Journal, November 22, 2001; Associated Press, September 21, 2001.
4Associated Press, September 21, 2001.
*Prepared by Julie Kim, Specialist in International Relations, Foreign Affairs, Defense, and
Trade Division, CRS. July 25, 2002.

continue to maintain links with Islamic terrorist groups such as al-Qaeda.5 The
Albanian government has strenuously denied that Albanian territory has been used
for training camps or bases for either ethnic Albanian extremist forces or Islamic
terrorist groups. It has sought to portray Albania as a staunch supporter of the United
States and no longer a safe haven for Islamic extremists. In late 2001, Albanian
authorities launched four raids on Islamic-based groups and deported several of their
principal officers. At the same time, neighboring states, such as Italy, complain
about the steady stream of illegal immigrants from Albania, many of whom are
linked with organized crime and engaged in illegal activities.
In addition to expelling suspected Islamic extremists, a major focus of Albania’s
counter-terrorism efforts has been to limit terrorists’ ability to use Albania to launder
money by blocking financial and other assets of persons and groups operating in
Albania with suspected links to terrorists. The United States has reportedly provided
Albania’s authorities with a list of 300 companies in Tirana that are suspected of
money laundering for terrorists or otherwise having links with terrorist groups.
Albania’s main action to date on this front has been to freeze the accounts and assets
of Jasin Kadi, a Saudi businessman who owned several companies in Albania and
was the main shareholder of a large building construction project in Tirana (and
whose assets have also been frozen in the United States). Kadi is thought to support
Al Qaeda and have links with Saudi suspected terrorist Abdel Latifi, who was
extradited from Albania in November 1999.6 The bank assets of two Islamic
organizations have also been blocked.
In December 2001, the Albanian government signed the international
Convention for the Suppression of Terrorist Financing (which has yet to be ratified
by the Albanian Assembly). In January 2002, the Albanian government approved a
National Plan of Action against Terrorism that outlined a broad array of tasks for the
governmental ministries and new structures to fight against internal and foreign
terrorism. In an address before parliament in January, former Prime Minister Meta
announced that the government’s Prosecutor’s Office was investigating several
Islamic organizations and foreign residents operating in Albania and suspected of
having links with international criminal and terrorist groups.
Other problem areas include notoriously lax security at the border and a
generally weak law-and-order system. Arms smuggling and other illegal cross-
border activity flourished during the years of conflict in the former Yugoslavia
(especially the recent ethnic Albanian rebel insurgencies in southern Serbia and
Macedonia), and during the 1997 civil unrest and insurgency in Albania. The
government’s efforts to remedy this problem are undermined by limited resources to
equip and train an effective border police. The government is also focusing attention

5“Lord Robertson addresses NATO prospects for Albania,” Tirana Koha Jone, Foreign
Broadcast Information Service, January 17, 2002.
6FBIS-EEU, February 8, 2002.

on closing loopholes in its citizenship laws that may have allowed Islamic terrorists
to gain Albanian citizenship.7
Testifying before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in June 2002, U.S.
Ambassador-designate Mr. James Jeffrey claimed that Albania “has done everything
that we have asked” in the campaign to counter terrorism. He cited good intelligence
cooperation with the Albanian government on possible threats against U.S. interests
in Albania, cooperative measures to close down Islamic fundamentalist groups with
suspected connections to the Al Qaeda network, and action taken against an
individual with possible financial links with Al Qaeda.

7International Crisis Group report, p. 8.

The Belgian government, though aware that terrorism poses a threat to Belgium
and other European countries as well as to the United States, has had a somewhat
problematic record of cooperation with Washington in the war on terrorism. One
U.S. government official has characterized Belgium’s political will to cooperate as
“fairly strong,” chiefly because it is linked to Belgium’s self-interest: the Belgians
do not want any terrorist activity to occur on their territory. Because the European
Union and NATO are headquartered in their country, he added, the Belgians are
sensitized to the terrorist threat; but they are anxious over whether they have
sufficient resources to protect personnel at the two institutions. Immediately after the
attacks on the United States, Belgium tightened security around EU, NATO and U.S.
facilities throughout the country. In addition, the Belgians’ ability to deliver on their
promises is somewhat challenged – any type of “coordination” is problematic in
Belgium’s federated system of government, in which policies must navigate the
shoals of several levels of government and three official languages. In addition,
Belgium’s domestic political dynamics act as something of a constraint on their
ability to cooperate; the ethnic mistrust between the Dutch-speaking Flemings and
the French-speaking Walloons complicates matters. Finally, their government tends
to place a great deal of emphasis on process, and is slow and bureaucratic.
International Cooperation
Belgium has shown some leadership in coordinating international counter-
terrorist activities. On September 17, police and anti-terrorist officials from
Germany, the Netherlands, and France met with their Belgian counterparts in
Brussels to discuss efforts to share information and coordinate counter-terrorist
strategy. In addition, Belgium, which held the revolving EU presidency between July
and December of 2001, pushed for acceptance of EU-wide fast-track extradition
procedures for serious crimes. Like other EU countries, however, Belgium has
refused to deport suspected terrorists to countries where they might face the death
penalty; in fact, the law prohibits extradition of Belgian nationals. In June 2002, the
U.S. and Belgian governments initialed an agreement that will permit U.S. Customs
agents to be stationed in the seaport of Antwerp, where they will work with Belgian
officials to screen freight containers to be loaded on vessels bound for the United
States. The accord is part of the Bush Administration’s Container Security Initiative,
under which foreign ports will be checked to prevent shipment to the United States
of weapons of mass destruction.8
However, in a swipe at the United States in mid-July, Belgian Prime Minister
Guy Verhofstadt circulated among EU members a letter calling for the transformation

8U.S. Enters Agreement With Belgium To Inspect Cargo Shipped From Antwerp. By
Jeannine Aversa. AP. June 26, 2002.
*Prepared by Carl Ek, Specialist in International Relations, Foreign Affairs, Defense, and
Trade Division, CRS. October 17, 2002.

of the European Security and Defense Policy into a true military force that could
operate independently of NATO. A press summary of the letter indicated that
Verhofstadt had argued that “NATO was becoming a ‘toolbox’ of Washington,
which was using it as a prop to build coalitions for its war against terrorism.”9
Counterterrorism Actions
Belgian authorities made numerous arrests in the days and months following

9/11, but they have not always cooperated with the United States in a timely fashion.

Three days after the attacks on the United States, Brussels police, acting on a tip to
the Belgian State Security Service, arrested Nizar Trabelsi and Abdelcrim el-Hadouti,
North African members of a radical Islamic movement. During a house search, the
police found Uzi machine pistols, along with false Dutch identity papers and other
documents. Belgian Justice Minister Marc Verwilghen stated that authorities were
investigating whether the two were linked to Al Qaeda. It was later revealed that the
two may have been planning an assault on the U.S. Paris embassy. Two of the
suspects’ associates were taken into custody a week later, but were released
conditionally on October 16, although investigations into their activities continued.
In mid-October, U.S. law enforcement officials reportedly objected that Belgian
authorities had hampered investigations into terrorist activities by denying timely
access to information on the case, and refusing to permit the two suspects to be
questioned by the Americans. The New York Times quoted a U.S. official as saying
“[t]he Belgians have not taken up the other models of cooperation. ... this has hurt
us.”10 After the article was published, Belgian officials expressed surprise, arguing
that Brussels “had been cooperating with U.S. authorities at the highest level ... .”11
They provided the requested file, saying the United States had failed to follow
“proper procedures” for information exchange.
Belgium’s laws on security-related matters have proved controversial in the
past. The two suicide bombers who assassinated former Afghan Northern Alliance
leader Ahmed Shah Massoud on September 9, 2001, were found to be carrying
Belgian passports. Until 1998, Belgian passports were issued by municipal officials,
and an estimated 3,500 passports were stolen annually from poorly-guarded city
halls. After the United States applied pressure, even indicating that it might begin
requiring visas for Belgians, the country centralized its passport issuance.12 More
recently, the press has criticized Belgium for having “some of the weakest
antiterrorism laws in the European Union[,] ... making it popular among terrorists
as a place to hide out and plan attacks.”13 Citing Belgian sources, the article

9Belgium Seeks New European Defence Alliance. By Judy Dempsey. The Financial Times.
July 25, 2002. p. 5.
10Belgium Is Hindering Investigation, U.S. Says. By Chris Hedges. New York Times.
October 17, 2001.
11Belgians Overcome Problems In Information Exchange With U.S. On Terror Suspects.
AP. October 17, 2001.
12Not Only Masood Killers Had Stolen Belgian Passport. Reuters. September 17, 2001.
13‘Back Office’ For Terrorism? Belgium Scrambles To Close Loopholes In Security Laws.

maintained that, because Belgium had not suffered directly from terrorist acts in the
recent past, Brussels largely relegated the terrorism issue to a back burner in the
1980s. In an editorial a week later, the newspaper singled out Belgium as “simply
the only country whose elected officials have failed to ensure that the bureaucracy
does not provide an obstruction to broader interests.”14
Belgian law enforcement authorities in December arrested Tunisian-born Tarek
Maaroufi, suspected of being a member of Osama bin Laden’s European network,
and of recruiting for Al Qaeda. Because “Belgian legislation does not actually speak
of any ‘terrorist offence,’”15 Maaroufi was picked up on a variety of criminal charges,
including one based on a 1979 law prohibiting recruitment for foreign military forces.
Maaroufi, regarded by European police as a kingpin among militant Muslim groups,
had been connected to Islamic militants in Belgium as early as 1995, and was also
wanted in Italy for plotting an attack on the U.S. embassy in Rome.16 An associate
of Maaroufi, Ahmed Ellattah, was arrested in October 2002.
In January, Belgian police announced that they were seeking the arrest of one
Victor Bout on charges of money-laundering. According to UN and other reports,
the Tajik-born Bout, a former officer in the Soviet air force, has long been suspected
of trafficking weapons to Al Qaeda and the Taliban, as well as to various African
countries. The alleged arms trafficker is believed to have used an air field in northern
Belgium as one of his bases of operation. Two days after the international arrest
warrant was issued, Bout came to ground in Moscow. Belgium has sought his
extradition, but, according to some, “he appears to be enjoying official protection”
in Russia.17
The revelations that people associated with terrorism such as Trabelsi, Maaroufi,
and Bout had been active in Belgium received added weight in June, when a British
newspaper stated that a leaked Belgian parliamentary intelligence committee report
had concluded that Belgium “had become ‘a logistical base’ for terrorist groups ...

By Dan Bilefsky and Philip Shishkin. Wall Street Journal. October 9, 2001. p. A19.
14Belgium’s War Effort. Editorial. Wall Street Journal. October 8, 2001.
15United Nations Security Council. Note Verbale dated 21 December 2001 from the
Permanent Mission of Belgium to the United Nations addressed to the Chairman of the
Security Council Committee established pursuant to resolution 1373 (2001) concerning
counter terrorism. December 27, 2001. p. 3.
16Arrests In Belgium Highlight Its Role As A Militants’ Base. By John Tagliabue. New
York Times. December 20, 2001. European Probe – Belgium, Britain Hold 10 Terror
Suspects. Los Angeles Times. December 20, 2001. p. A-10.
17Belgium Seeks Arms Dealer With Suspected Al Qaeda Ties. By Donald G. McNeil, Jr.
New York Times. February 26, 2002. Russian Wanted On International Arrest Warrant For
Arms Shipments Resurfaces Near Kremlin. By Vladimir Isachenkov. AP. February 28,
2002. Moscow Should Hand Over Fugitive Weapons Trafficker. By Wiliam F. Wechsler
and Lee S. Wolosky. Los Angeles Times. July 23, 2002. p. B-13.

.”18 The article quoted the president of the Belgian senate as saying that “[a] lot of
these extreme groups are attempting to ‘re-Islamise’ Belgium’s Muslim population
in the most radical fashion.” The disclosure is believed to have prompted the
subsequent resignation of the head of Belgium’s national security service, whose
management had been criticized in the parliamentary report.

18Belgium Is ‘Launch Pad For Terrorists.’ By Ambrose Evans-Pritchard. London Daily
Telegraph. June 4, 2002.

Bosnia and Hercegovina*
Like other countries in Europe, Bosnia has been a significant haven for Al
Qaeda and other terrorist groups. After the breakup of Communist Yugoslavia,
Bosnia and Hercegovina was torn apart by a civil war between Bosniaks (Bosnian
Muslims), Serbs and Croats. A U.S.-brokered peace agreement in 1995 divided the
country into two semi-autonomous “entities,” one dominated by the Serbs, the other
by the Bosniaks and Croats, with a weak central government. Most powers,
including domestic powers to fight terrorism, are vested in the entities. The central
government deals with international efforts to fight terror.
Several thousand Muslim fundamentalist fighters fought for the Bosniak army
during the 1992-1995 civil war. Most left Bosnia at U.S. insistence after the
deployment of the NATO-led Stabilization Force (SFOR) in December 1995.
However, a few stayed, and become Bosnian citizens by marrying Bosnian women.
Perhaps more troublesome has been the uncovering Al Qaeda ties among some
Islamic charities and humanitarian organizations that proliferated during and after the
war. Al Qaeda used a few of them for planning attacks in Bosnia and elsewhere.
According to U.S. officials, the U.S. embassy in Sarajevo and U.S. military bases in
Bosnia have been subject to several terrorist threats since September 11, causing the
temporary closure of the U.S. embassy on two occasions. Some Al Qaeda operatives
in Bosnia reportedly have connections to members of Bosnia’s intelligence service,
another legacy of Bosniak wartime cooperation with Islamic militants.
The issue of terrorism has been politicized in Bosnia to some extent, as each
ethnic group has used the label “terrorist” to define its adversaries. Some Bosnian
Serb officials have at times taken the opportunity to criticize the Bosniaks for
allegedly harboring Islamic terrorists. Bosnian Croats have reportedly engaged in
petty obstruction within the Federation government at times, perhaps to cast the
Bosniaks in a bad light. Several Bosniak political leaders have expressed concern
that Bosnian police raids on Islamic charities may have a negative impact on the
legitimate activities of the majority of charities, which are not linked with Al Qaeda.
In July 2002, the deputy chairman of Bosnia’s anti-terrorism commission resigned,
saying that NATO should do a better job of capturing indicted war criminals
Radovan Karadzic and Ratko Mladic, who many Bosniaks see as “terrorists.” The
seizure of five suspected terrorists in January 2002 was criticized by some Bosnian
legal experts as a violation of the rule of law.19
However, it should be stressed that, despite this political sniping, Bosnian
opposition to terrorism has been remarkably broad, despite the still-deep ethnic
divide in the country. The United States still enjoys a strong reservoir of support in

19Daniel Williams, “Hand-Over of Terrorism Suspects to U.S. Angers Many in Bosnia,”
Washington Post, January 31, 2002.
*Prepared by Steven Woehrel, Specialist in European Affairs, Foreign Affairs, Defense, and
Trade Division, CRS. August 27, 2002.

Bosnia, especially among Bosniaks, for bringing peace to the country and providing
post-war aid. In addition, Bosniaks are known in the Muslim world as particularly
secular and European in outlook. This has often caused friction between foreign
Islamic extremists and many ordinary Bosniaks. Efforts by the Islamists to recruit
Bosniaks into their organizations have met with limited success.20 Some Bosniaks
also fear that the terrorists will give Bosnia a bad name in Europe, thereby hindering
their ability to travel there, and setting back Bosnian efforts to join European
institutions in the long run.
Anti-Terror Policy: Implementation
U.S. officials have lauded Bosnia’s efforts in the fight against terrorism. In his
2002 State of the Union Address, President Bush singled out Bosnia specifically for
praise for its cooperation with the United States. Bosnia set up an anti-terrorist
government working group within hours of the September 11 attacks. In January
2002, Bosnia handed over to the United States Bensayah Belkacem, reportedly a
high-ranking figure in Al Qaeda, as well as five other suspects. In cooperation with
U.S. investigators, Bosnian authorities are investigating several Islamic charities
suspected of having ties with Bin Laden. In March 2002, Bosnian police raided
Bosnian offices of Benevolence International Foundation, which is headquartered in
Illinois. Police found weapons, military manuals, a fraudulent passport, photographs
of Bin Laden, and other items. BIF’s leader, Enaam Arnaout, has been charged by
the U.S. government with financing terrorist operations.21 A Bosnian raid on another
group, the local branch of Saudi-based Al-Haramain Islamic Foundation, uncovered
tapes calling for attacks on peacekeepers in Bosnia. Another raid, this time on the
Sarajevo office of the Saudi High Commission for Relief, netted anti-Semitic and
anti-American materials, as well as photos of U.S. military installations.22
The United States and Bosnia worked to improve the country’s ability to fight
money laundering well before September 11. In January 2001, the U.S. Treasury
Department began a study of the Bosnian Financial Police to recommend ways of
improving its effectiveness. The report of findings was submitted in May 2001 and
adopted by Bosnia in July 2001. In September 2001, the Prime Minister held a
meeting of his cabinet to form a task force to implement the findings of the study and
set a timetable for action items to be accomplished.23 According to the State
Department’s 2001 Patterns of Global Terrorism Report, Bosnian banking authorities
have worked diligently to identify and freeze suspected terrorist assets in the financial
sector. This occurred despite the fact that the legislative basis for asset seizure was
not fully in place at the time.
However, despite good intentions, Bosnian efforts to fight terrorism are
sometimes hampered by the weakness and inefficiency of its government institutions,

20Discussions with U.S. officials.
21FBI Affidavit in Support of Complaint Against Benevolence International Foundation, Inc,
and Enaam M. Arnaout, State of Illinois, County of Cook, April 29, 2002, 10.
22Andrew Purvis, “Money Trouble,” “Time Magazine Europe, July 1, 2002.
23International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, March 2002, p. xii-40

which have created an environment in which crime and corruption have flourished.
For example, Bosnia has planned to tighten its citizenship law, but passage has been
stymied by legislative gridlock, a key feature of Bosnian politics since the end of the
war in 1995 that is not directly related to the terrorism issue. Also, with help from
the EU and United States, Bosnia deployed a new State Border Service throughout
virtually all of the country’s territory last year. However, the Bosnian budget
provided insufficient funding for the force, requiring foreign donors to step in to
provide temporary funding.24
However, mitigating these problems is the presence of SFOR and other
international officials on Bosnia’s territory. NATO troops and intelligence services
can work with their Bosnian counterparts and independently track down and arrest
suspected terrorists. The Office of the High Representative, which is the leading
international civilian body in Bosnia, has the power to impose laws on Bosnia, as
needed, but often employs more indirect means to influence the Bosnian government.
The powerful influence exercised by international officials in Bosnia gives the United
States more freedom to arrest and deport terrorists than in many European countries,
which might object on civil liberties or other grounds.

24Discussions with U.S. officials.

Although Bulgaria has not appeared to represent a target destination for
international terrorist groups, its “crossroad location” between western Europe and
the still unstable west Balkans and the Caucasus make it an attractive environment
and transit point for illegal cross-border trafficking, organized crime, and
international terrorism.25 Some media sources have reported on an alleged Al Qaeda
planning meeting in Sofia in early 2002 and the possible transit of Al Qaeda and
Taliban members from Bulgaria across western Europe, but these stories have not26
been officially confirmed.
Bulgaria is seeking accession into NATO and the European Union. In
particular, Bulgaria wishes to be among the countries invited to join NATO at the
alliance’s November 2002 summit in Prague. Following the September 11, 2001
terrorist attacks on the United States, the Bulgarian government and parliament
pledged full cooperation with the global coalition to fight terrorism and declared that
Bulgaria would act as a de facto NATO ally. Bulgaria became a non-permanent
member of the U.N. Security Council in January 2002, and thus plays a role in
developing further international policies on counter-terrorism. The Bulgarian
government and parliament agreed to U.S. requests for overflight privileges and use
by U.S. aircraft and personnel of a Bulgarian airbase near the Black Sea base of
Burgas for support operations in Afghanistan. Under a standing agreement with
NATO on transit passage of NATO forces, Bulgaria is committed to provide
additional transit and logistic support to NATO personnel in possible future missions.
In December 2001, the Bulgarian government issued a decree on the
implementation of U.N. Security Council Resolution 1373. The decree called for the
blocking of financial assets of terrorists and terrorist groups, and financial
contributions or other assistance to these groups, and banning the sale, supply, or
transfer to them of armaments and other equipment related to the commission of
terrorist acts.
Establishing and implementing mechanisms to prevent and block access by
terrorists and terrorist groups to financing from Bulgarian territory has been a major
area of focus. The Financial Intelligence Bureau, under the Ministry of Finance,
oversees investigations and actions to counter the financing of terrorists or terrorist
groups, in cooperation with foreign organizations. In December 2001, the Bulgarian
government approved the international Convention for the Suppression of Terrorist
Financing; parliament is expected to ratify the convention soon. In June 2002, the
government approved a draft bill on the Suppression of Terrorism that will empower
the Interior Ministry to block and confiscate assets of persons and groups linked with
terrorism. Such persons and groups will be identified on a list approved by the

25Report from Bulgaria to the U.N. Counter-Terrorism Committee, S/2001/1273, December

27, 2001, p. 3.

26The Times (UK), May 23, 2002; Sofia 24 Chasa in FBIS-EEU, March 26, 2002.
*Prepared by Julie Kim, Specialist in International Relations, Foreign Affairs, Defense, and
Trade Division, CRS. July 25, 2002.

government and updated semi-annually. In July, the government prepared a draft law
against terrorist financing to impose fines and other sanctions against persons and
institutions providing financial services to terrorists.
Another target issue area concerns the export of Bulgarian arms to countries
subject to international arms embargoes. During the past decade, Bulgaria has been
implicated in numerous reported cases of illegal armaments shipments to black-listed
countries such as Sudan, Angola, and Iraq.27 The Bulgarian government, while
actively seeking to promote the Bulgarian defense industry and legitimate export
markets, has endeavored to crack down on illegal arms exports by enhancing the
legal basis for controls. In addition, the Bulgarian media and non-governmental
organizations have focused substantial attention on this issue. In January 2002, the
government approved amendments to the law on Foreign Trade in Arms and in
Potential Dual-Use Goods and Technologies Control, which received final approval
in parliament on July 18, in order to strengthen existing mechanisms for controls. In
April, the government installed an automated software system, granted by the United
States, to track information relating to armaments trade.28
Bulgaria is the last former Warsaw Pact country still possessing Soviet-era SS-
23 medium-range missile systems. The United States has maintained that these
systems may be attractive to terrorists and has pressed for their destruction. In late

2001, the Bulgarian government and parliament approved plans to dismantle the SS-

23 and other missiles by the end of October 2002. In May 2002, Bulgaria and the
United States signed a bilateral agreement on the destruction of Bulgaria’s SS-23,
Scud, and FROG missiles. The United States is providing technical assistance and
financial compensation for their destruction by the late October deadline.
Lax border controls for goods and people represent another major problem.
Cross-border smuggling of goods continues to evade tax and fee collection, and may
be attributable to ineffective or corrupt customs systems and border police
monitoring. According to the Bulgarian government, all persons and vehicles
passing through the country’s borders are subject to control, and border checkpoints
have established links to databases in the Foreign and Interior Ministries, but skeptics
question the effectiveness of these resources.29 Bulgarian authorities contend that
they have stepped up efforts to detain illegal immigrants. In June, two policemen and
two immigration officers were charged with running a human-smuggling operation
for foreign migrants.30 Most of the reported illegal border crossings in 2001 involved
persons from Romania, Afghanistan, and Iraq.31

27See “Bulgaria, Money Talks: Arms Dealing with Human Rights Abusers,” Human Rights
Watch Report, Vol. 11, No. 4, April 1999.
28BBC Monitoring, April 2, 2002.
29 S/2001/1273, December 27, 2001, p.13.
30“Stream of refugees crossing into Europe may include terrorists,” Wall Street Journal
Europe, July 5, 2002.
31Sofia BTA news agency, in FBIS-EEU, January 29, 2002.

A growing number of foreigners have sought asylum in Bulgaria. In May 2002,
the Bulgarian parliament passed a new asylum and refugee bill that is intended to
streamline and accelerate processing of asylum claims, which may help prevent
terrorists from seeking and obtaining asylum status in Bulgaria.

Croatia condemned the September 11 attacks on the United States and has
vowed to support the war on terrorism. Croatia has not been known as a haven for
terrorists. There is broad Croatian public support for the war on terrorism. Croatia’s
key foreign policy goal is eventual membership in the European Union and NATO.
Although these objectives are unlikely to be achieved in the foreseeable future,
Croatia wants close relations with the United States and other Western countries,
including on the issue of terrorism. Croatians also have concerns about Islamic
fundamentalism and terrorist threats in Croatia and elsewhere in the region,
particularly possible spillover effects from neighboring Bosnia.32
After the September 11 attacks, the Croatian government established a
Permanent Co-ordination Task Force for the implementation of Security Council
resolution 1373 (2001), which dealt with the international response to terrorism.
Croatia has reviewed its laws in order to decide what amendments are needed to fight
more effectively against terror. Amendments are planned to laws on the movement
and residence of foreigners; the criminal code; laws on Croatia’s intelligence service;
asylum legislation, money laundering laws, and international legal assistance and
extradition laws, among others.
The 2001 State Department International Narcotics Control Strategy Report said
that Croatia is “neither a regional financial nor a money laundering center.” A 1997
law criminalized money laundering and required banks and non-bank financial
institutions to report transactions that exceed U.S. $17,500, as well as any suspicious33
cash transactions. After September 11, the Croatian Finance Ministry formed a
task force to coordinate Croatia’s efforts to fight money laundering. Croatia has also
established an Office for Combating Corruption and Organized Crime, which has as
part of its mandate the prevention of financing of terrorism. Croatia is working with
Germany, Austria and Slovenia under the auspices of the Stability Pact to bring
control of its borders closer to EU standards, including in its asylum and migration34

32Discussions with U.S. officials.
33U.S. State Department, International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, March 2002, p.
34Reports of the Republic of Croatia on the Implementation of Security Council Resolution
1373, U.N. Security Council Document S/2001/1271, December 2001 and U.N. Security
Council Document S/2002/727.
*Prepared by Steven Woehrel, Specialist in European Affairs, Foreign Affairs, Defense, and
Trade Division, CRS. August 28, 2002.

The greatest concern about the willingness of Cyprus to combat terror is in the
area of money-laundering. Cyprus’ low corporate tax rate attracts many offshore
companies from Europe and the United States; the total number of such companies
is estimated at over 50,000. Cyprus traditionally provided little monitoring of these
businesses, whose activities were far from transparent. This earned Cyprus a
reputation as a money-laundering haven and some businesses used bank accounts
established on the island for what may be regarded as nefarious purposes.
Largely because Cyprus hopes to become a member of the European Union by
2004, it has been trying to improve its performance in this area.35 It is considering
raising the corporate tax rate. Cyprus also plans to improve enforcement of laws,
including its anti-money laundering law, and to demand greater transparency in
business operations. It has withdrawn permits from offshore companies failing to
meet disclosure and other requirements. In 2000, the Organization for Economic
Cooperation and Development’s Financial Action Task Force found that Cyprus had
a comprehensive anti-money laundering system. The government took some steps
in 2001 to address the Task Force’s concerns about identification of owners of
beneficial accounts; the reforms apply to new, not existing, accounts. In 2001, the
International Monetary Fund concluded that Cyprus’s anti-money laundering
framework was adequate; although it too noted areas for improvement in
identification and in the reporting of suspicious transactions.36
A State Department report issued in March 2002 found that Cyprus “remains
vulnerable to international money laundering activities.”37 It recommends additional
steps that the government of Cyprus could take to enhance enforcement of anti-
money laundering laws, including authorizing its Unit for Combating Money
Laundering to conduct unannounced inspections and examine suspicious activity
reports filed with the Central Bank.38
In recent weeks, allegations resurfaced that the regime of former Yugoslav
President and accused war criminal Slobodan Milosevic had used Cyprus to launder

35Cyprus has provisionally closed 28 out of 30 chapters of rules and regulations to enable
it to conform to European Union standards, and it is in the forefront of countries seeking
admittance to the EU.
36U.S. Department of State, Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs,
International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, p.XII-105.
37 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, p.XII-105-108.
38 Ibid. p. XII-108. Cyprus established the Unit for Combating Money Laundering in 1997
with representatives from the Attorney General’s Office, Customs, law enforcement, and
support staff.
*Prepared by Carol Migdalovitz, Specialist in Middle Eastern Affairs, Foreign Affairs,
Defense, and Trade Division, CRS. August 19, 2002.

large amounts of funds. The UN War Crimes Tribunal in The Hague disclosed that
the Milosevic regime had diverted over $1.23 billion in cash through eight registered
off-shore companies on Cyprus to banks on the island between 1992 and 2000.39 An
estimated 250 bank accounts have been identified as belonging to Serb offshore
companies based in Cyprus. Testimony by Yugoslav couriers in The Hague has
included vivid accounts of hundreds of thousands of dollars regularly flown to
Cyprus by private plane. Sources associated with The Hague court have claimed that
Cypriot banks had knowingly allowed the Yugoslav front companies to operate and
supply Yugoslavia with fuel, raw materials, spare parts, and weapons in defiance of
U.N. sanctions.40
These accusations have resurrected Cyprus’ reputation as a prime money-
laundering haven, raised questions about the commitment of the Central Bank and
the government to implement fully anti-money laundering practices that meet
international standards. The charges also embarrassed the government. In rebuttal,
the Central Bank has claimed that most Yugoslav money arrived on the island after
U.N. sanctions were lifted in 1995. It also said that, during the period of sanctions,
it had been satisfied that the Yugoslav money was not used for prohibited
transactions. The Attorney General of Cyprus, Alecos Markides, maintains that he
is “fully cooperating with the prosecutor’s office of the International Criminal
Tribunal for former Yugoslavia.”41 Despite the government’s promise of full
cooperation with the U.N. Tribunal, it “has stopped short of ordering an investigation
into whether the Central Bank and the commercial banks violated international rules
against money-laundering in the case of the Milosevic funds.”42 Even a Cypriot
newspaper finds that the authorities’ credibility has been tested by their evolving
explanations for the Yugoslav money.43

39Kerin Hope, UN Report links Cypriot Bank with Milosevic Arms Purchases, Financial
Times, June 18, 2002. Elias Hazou, Government seeks to play down Sanctions Busting
claims, Cyprus Mail, July 30 2002. Other estimates of the amount of money illegally
transferred out of Yugoslavia and through Cyprus range as high as $4 billion. International
Narcotics Control Strategy Report, March 2002, p.XII-106.
40Kerin Hope and Stefan Wagstyl, Defiant Cyprus Bank that helped fund Two Wars,
Financial Times, July 25, 2002; Cyprus Bank denies it knew of Yugo Sanctions-Busting,
Reuters, July 27, 2002.
41Cypriot Bank refutes Newspaper Allegations of Money-Laundering, Cypriot News
Agency, July 27, 2002, carried by BBC Monitoring-Political, July 27, 2002, Letter to the
Editor from Alecos Markides, Financial Times, July 29, 2002.
42Financial Times, op.cit, July 25, 2002.
43We’re running out of credibility, Cyprus Mail, July 30, 2002.

Counterterrorism Since 9/1144
Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides declared on October 8, 2001 that Cyprus
has a three-fold role in the fight against terrorism: to combat the financing of
terrorism, reinforce security measures at airports and ports, and secure cooperation
with the security services of other countries.45
Between September 2001 and January 2002, the Central Bank of Cyprus issued
a number of circulars to banks requesting the freezing of funds belonging to persons,
organizations, or entities associated with Osama bin Laden and the Taliban. The
circulars include the list of persons designated by the Security Council and President
Bush’s Executive Order 13224 of September 23, 2001 on blocking assets of terrorists
and terrorist organizations. The Central Bank of Cyprus reported early that it had
searched for assets or accounts of 165 groups or individuals suspected of links with
Bin Laden, but it did not find any suspect accounts.
In October 2001, Cyprus sold to the United States government nuclear reactor
plant equipment and six packages of zirconium (a dual-use product) that had been
seized and confiscated by Cypriot authorities in 1995. It considers the sale part of its
anti-terrorism activity.
On November 22, 2001, the Cyprus Parliament ratified the UN Convention on
the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism. The government set up a subunit to
focus on the financing of terrorism within its Unit for Combating Money-Laundering.
The State Department reports that the government of Cyprus has cooperated with the
United States to investigate terrorist financing.46
On September 18, 2002, the United States and Cyprus ratified a Mutual Legal
Assistance Treaty to “promote closer coordination between the countries to transfer
persons in custody, execute searches and seizures, share documents, records and
intelligence, identify persons or items of interest to authorities, and to take other
measures designed to assist in the prosecution of a wide range of criminal

44Some of this information is from the Report of the Republic of Cyprus Concerning the
Requirements of Resolution 1390 (2002) on Measures against Terrorism, 15 April 2002.
45Cyprus Embassy Newsletter, October 2001.
46 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, p. XII-106.
47MS2 Presswire, September 19, 2002.

One U.S. government official has characterized Denmark’s political will to
cooperate with the United States in the war on terrorism as “extremely strong.”
Although this assessment applied to the previous government, which was ousted in
November 2001 elections, it is particularly true of the current government, which, the
official said, has been criticized by other European countries for its enthusiastic
support of the United States. On October 10, 2001, U.S. Secretary of State Colin
Powell wrote to Poul Nyrup Rasmussen, then Denmark’s prime minister, thanking
him for “strong statements and actions in support of the fight against terrorism.”48
Among the signs of support, Powell mentioned Denmark’s immediate backing for
the invocation of NATO’s Article 5, the offer of military assistance, the pledge of aid
to Afghanistan, and the signing of the UN Convention on Combating Financing of
Terrorism. Shortly after the November national elections, the new Prime Minister,
Fogh Rasmussen (no relation), strongly echoed his predecessor’s commitment to the
war on terrorism.
Immigration has been an issue of growing concern in Denmark, where there
were increasing signs of anti-immigrant sentiments – especially towards Muslims –
well before 9/11; those feelings intensified afterward. Immigration figured as a
major issue in Denmark’s November 2001 parliamentary elections. The Liberal
Party (conservatives) pledged to curb immigration, cut welfare benefits to
immigrants, and restrict family reunification. On election day, Danish voters ejected
the ruling Socialists and replaced them with a Liberal-led government with the
largest majority in 80 years.49 In mid-January, the new government made good its
campaign pledge by announcing proposed legislation that would place restrictions on
rules governing political asylum, refugee status, welfare benefits, spousal
reunification, and obtaining citizenship. According to Bertel Haarder, Minister for
Refugees, Immigration and Integration, the legislation is intended to help wean the
immigrant community – half of whom are on welfare – off the public dole.50
Counterterrorism Initiatives
In mid-November, the government announced that Danish banks had searched
their databases and had forwarded to the national police a list of 30 names of
individuals with possible links to terrorist groups; subsequent investigations showed
none of the individuals had been linked to terrorism. In late January, Prime Minister
Rasmussen declared that Denmark’s intelligence service had determined that the

48Powell Thanks Denmark For Support. AFP. October 10, 2001.
49 Although Pia Kjærsgaard’s anti-foreigner Danish People’s Party won 12% of the vote,
it was not invited to help form the governing coalition.
50A Turn From Tolerance. By Peter Finn. Washington Post. March 29, 2002. p. A1.
*Prepared by Carl Ek, Specialist in International Relations, Foreign Affairs, Defense, and
Trade Division, CRS. October 17, 2002.

country did not harbor members or supporters of Al Qaeda, nor did it have
information indicating that terrorist groups had raised money in Denmark.51
Unlike some European countries, Denmark was not quick to criticize the living
conditions of detainees held by the United States at its naval base in Guantanamo
Bay, Cuba. In March 2002, a small delegation of Danish officials traveled to meet
with a Danish national who had been captured in Afghanistan and was being held at
Camp X-Ray. After interviewing the detainee, whose situation was likened to the
John Walker Lindh case in the United States, the group reported to Foreign Minister
Per Stig Møller, who stated that “under the circumstances, he’s doing just fine.”52
For a country its size, Denmark has made a significant military contribution to
the conflict in Afghanistan, and has experienced casualties; in early March, three
Danish soldiers were killed and three wounded while defusing Soviet-era ordnance.53
Copenhagen has also pledged $93 million in humanitarian assistance and
Denmark has been actively engaged in the war on terrorism both bilaterally in
cooperation with the United States, and through various international organizations.
At the end of January, OSCE Chairman Jaime Gama of Portugal named Danish
Defense Minister Jan Troejborg to be in charge of counter-terrorism activities. In
addition, a major goal of the Danish EU presidency, which began in July, is to
highlight and strengthen the transatlantic relationship, and the Danes have solicited
suggestions from the United States on how this might be done.54 In a July 3 speech
in Washington D.C., Foreign Minister Møller pledged that “[d]uring our Presidency,
we will push for cooperation among our police and justice organizations and we will
also increase the efforts against financing of terrorism. Work will be carried forward
on major extradition and mutual legal assistance agreements as well.”55 Also in July,
Copenhagen hosted a meeting of EU and Asian finance ministers who discussed
methods to curb money laundering and fundraising activities of terrorist groups.
In a March speech in Hampden-Sydney Virginia, Prime Minister Rasmussen
called for the United States and Europe to join together in a “Global Deal” to
promote greater economic development, arguing that “[t]he fight against poverty and
misery in the developing countries has a direct link to the prevention of conflict and
terrorism.” Among other things, the plan would involve an arrangement under which

51Denmark Not Haven For Terrorists Linked To bin Laden: Danish PM. AFP. January 23,


52Danish Delegation To Guantanamo Says Detainee Is “Feeling Fine.” AP. March 16, 2002.
53Prime Minister: Danish Casualties in Afghanistan Won’t Change Commitment To Terror
War. AP. March 6, 2002.
54CRS interview with U.S. government official. July 15, 2002.
55United We Stand, Divided We Fall. Speech by Dr. Per Stig Møller at the American
Enterprise Institute. Washington, D.C. July 3, 2002. p. 5.

developing countries would provide greater market access in exchange for improved
governance on the part of developing countries.56
At the end of May, the Danish parliament passed anti-terrorism legislation
providing for stiffer sentences for highjacking and other offences, enhanced police
search and wiretapping authority, extradition of Danish citizens, and restrictions on
political asylum. The measure was criticized by journalists, human rights groups, and
the opposition Social Democrats.57 Mona Sahlin, Sweden’s Minister for Immigration,
also denounced the law, arguing that it would divert political asylees to neighboring
countries. Some observers, however, argue that Denmark, which had the highest
acceptance rate of asylum seekers in Europe, had simply brought its definition of
political asylum in line with that of the United Nations.

56Denmark’s Prime Minister Pitches ‘Global Deal’ At Virginia College. AP. March 26,

2002. Denmark’s ‘Global Deal.’ By James Morrison. The Washington Times. March 28,

2002. p. A12.

57Telephone Tapping, House Searches in Draconian Danish Anti-Terror Law. AFP. May

31, 2002.

Estonia strongly condemned the September 11 attacks. Estonia has not been a
haven of terrorists or a center of terrorist activity. There is a political consensus in
Estonia in support of the fight against terrorism, in part because Estonia is seeking
membership in NATO and the European Union. Estonians are aware that Western
nations are evaluating their candidacies in light of their response to the terrorist
threat. As a prospective member of the European Union, Estonia has been working
to adopt EU standards in many fields, including in the fight against terrorism. In
most cases, Estonians do not perceive the resources used by Estonia in the war on
terror as particularly burdensome, given the fact that they would likely be needed58
anyway for other preparations for EU and NATO membership.
On September 24, 2001, the Estonian government adopted a national action plan
of domestic measures to fight terrorism. The plan calls for implementation of
international treaties on terrorism; support for other international efforts; enhanced
border control; suppression of the financing of terrorism; enhanced international
cooperation in police and judicial matters, including information exchange; and
assessment of domestic security requirements and legislation.
An important focus of Estonia’s anti-terrorist efforts is improving its ability to
fight money laundering. Estonia has one of the most developed banking systems of
former Soviet countries. Russian organized crime groups have reportedly used
financial institutions in Estonia and the other Baltic countries to launder money. In
1999, anti-money laundering legislation was approved that requires financial
institutions to report suspicious or unusual transactions. However, the 2001 State
Department Control Strategy Report noted that Estonia has no formal system for
ensuring that financial institutions comply with the reporting requirements, and that
the Estonian government lacked authority to compel banks to disclose additional59
information. Later this year, an International Sanctions Act is scheduled to enter
into force that will permit the government to prohibit any financial transactions with
and seize the assets of terrorists and terrorist organizations. In January 2002, Estonia
merged several different government departments with responsibility in this area to
form a united Estonian Financial Supervision Authority. It has signed agreements
with Finland, Lithuania, Germany and Sweden to cooperate in the fight against
money laundering.
On October 10, 2001, Estonia signed a co-operation treaty with Europol. This
treaty is aimed at increasing the exchange of information and enhance cooperation
between the police forces of Estonia and EU states. To date, Estonian authorities
have uncovered no examples of terrorists using Estonian financial institutions for

58Discussions with Estonian and U.S. officials.
59U.S. State Department, International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, March 2002, p.
*Prepared by Steven Woehrel, Specialist in European Affairs, Foreign Affairs, Defense, and
Trade Division, CRS. August 28, 2002.

money laundering. Estonia has also adopted a common plan of action with its Baltic
neighbors Latvia and Estonia to fight terrorism.60

60“Estonia’s Actions in the Fight Against International Terrorism, Estonian government fact
sheet, Report of the Republic of Estonia on the Implementation of Security Council
Resolution 1373, U.N. Security Council Document S/2001/1315, January 2002, and
Supplementary Report of the Republic of Slovenia on the Implementation of Security
Council Resolution 1373, U.N. Security Council Document S/2002/870, August 2002.

Federal Republic of Yugoslavia*
The Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (FRY), composed of the two republics of
Serbia and Montenegro, has supported the war on terrorism. The FRY government
has responsibility for international anti-terror efforts, and the republics are
responsible for most police and judicial functions. Kosovo, nominally a province of
Serbia, has been controlled since 1999 by a U.N. civil administratation, dubbed
UNMIK and a NATO-led peacekeeping force, KFOR since June 1999. FRY leaders
and some Western observers have called on UNMIK and KFOR to do a better job of
uncovering criminal activity among former fighters of the Kosovo Liberation Army
(KLA) and their possible connections with terrorist groups.
The FRY is not known as a terrorist stronghold. Indeed, during the reign of
Slobodan Milosevic, Serbian leaders portrayed themselves as fighting the forces of
“terrorism” and Islamic fundamentalism in Bosnia and Kosovo. The new democratic
leaders of Serbia and Montenegro have also expressed concerns about terrorism, but
unlike Milosevic, they have sought closer links with the West, including cooperation61
against terrorist groups. The FRY has set up a National Coordination Body for
Fighting Terrorism, headed by Federal Minister for Internal Affairs Zoran Zivkovic,
to develop and implement national strategy for fighting terrorism.
However, the FRY continues to have serious problems with organized crime,
including money laundering networks that could be used by terrorists. FRY leaders
view fighting organized crime as one of its key priorities. In March 2001, the U.S.
Treasury Department began a program to bolster the capabilities of the FRY to fight
money laundering, including providing training for Yugoslav investigators and
reviewing a new money laundering law.62 The FRY passed and put into effect a law
on preventing money laundering on July 6, 2002. Among other provisions, the law
provides for a Federal Commission for the Prevention of Money Laundering, which63
is charged with monitoring all transactions over 5000 Euros. In June 2002, the
Montenegrin government, reportedly at U.S. urging, closed down the republic’s64
lucrative offshore banking system. The FRY authorities say they have tightened
the monitoring of the country’s borders, as well as the guarding of foreign embassies,
airports and other possible terrorist targets.

61Discussions with FRY officials.
62U.S. State Department, International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, March 2002, p.
63FRY government fact sheet on support for the war on terror, August 2002.
64“Montenegro: U.S. Pressure Led to Offshore Bank Blow,” IPWR Balkan Crisis Report,
July 19, 2002.
*Prepared by Steven Woehrel, Specialist in European Affairs, Foreign Affairs, Defense, and
Trade Division CRS. August 28, 2002.

Many U.S. and French officials believe that bilateral cooperation between the
United States and France in law-enforcement efforts to combat terrorism since
September 11 has been strong, but at the same time a range of political factors is
complicating the relationship. France has long experience in combating terrorism,
a tightly centralized system of law enforcement, and a far-reaching network that
gathers information on extremist groups. A range of issues, such as control of
immigration and money laundering, are evident in French policy. At the same time,
limits on resources and important social and political issues constrain elements of its
anti-terrorism policies.
A History of Combating Terrorism
Violent radical groups have been active in France for a century or more, and
strong state action has been used to respond to them. The greatest challenge from
terrorists came in the 1960s, when extremists carried out assassination attempts and
bombings against institutional, private, and governmental targets. Many of these
individuals were of domestic origin; some were members of or had connections with
the French armed services. They were seeking to maintain Algeria as a colony, and
to overthrow the government of President de Gaulle, then in the process of
dismantling France’s colonial empire. Others were Algerian nationalists seeking an
end to French rule.
Since the 1960s, terrorists have repeatedly struck French targets. Since the
late1970s, France has captured a number of members of the Basque terrorist group,
the ETA, and extradited them to Spain. In recent years, a violent Corsican separatist
group has carried out assassinations and bombings in France. In the past half century,
France has created a number of intelligence agencies and specialized police forces
to combat such groups, usually in a successful manner. In 1994, French police
thwarted a hijacking at the Marseilles airport; terrorists had reportedly intended to
crash the plane into the Eiffel Tower. In a notable instance, in September 1995, an
Algerian terrorist organization, the Armed Islamic Group (GIA), carried out
bombings in the Paris subway that killed a number of French citizens. The reaction
of the French government, according to U.S. and French officials, was swift, ruthless,
and effective,65 and the bombings ceased.

65The details of this operation are not in the public domain. Elements of the GIA are now
reportedly linked to Al Qaeda.
*Prepared by Paul Gallis, Specialist in European Affairs, Foreign Affairs, Defense, and
Trade Division, CRS. October 17, 2002.

Legislative and Political Responses after September 11
The French government has asserted strong solidarity with the United States
since September 11, including the dispatch of military forces to the Afghan theater.
In France, the government has taken several steps to increase existing efforts to
combat terrorism.
On September 12, 2001, France revived an existing law enforcement measure,
Vigipirate, that enhances the ability of the government to ensure order. The
government established Vigipirate in 1978; without legislative action, the
government may activate the system. The system provides for greater surveillance of
public places, government authority to cancel holidays or public gatherings that could
be the target of terrorist attacks, the activation of elements of the military to secure
infrastructure, and tighter security at airports, train stations, embassies, religious
institutions, nuclear sites, and other locations that may come under threat. Upon
activation of Vigipirate in September 2001, the government called 35,000 men from
the police and military to enforce such measures; it assigned 4,000 men alone to the
Paris subway system.
The French government has practices long in existence in its effort to subdue
terrorism and protect its population. The government does not require national
identity cards, but they have become a virtual, and accepted, necessity for citizens
who wish to obtain a driver’s license, use a credit card, open a bank account, obtain
a loan, or undertake a wide array of other casual activities. Foreign students in France
must obtain a visitor’s identity card, obtained at a local police station, that describes
the purpose of one’s stay and indicates the student’s place of residence in France; in
times of tension, the police may check to ensure a foreign student’s whereabouts and
that his papers are in order. Similarly, a citizen’s papers may be requested in public
places by police for examination.66
The French government has made regulations and passed new legislation in an
effort to disrupt terrorist networks and operations. On September 26, 2001, due to
concern over bio-terrorism, the government instituted a regulation limiting and
controlling the sale, transport, storage, and research on a wide range of pathogens and
toxins, such as plague, anthrax, and botulism.
On November 1, 2001, the Socialist government of then Prime Minister Lionel
Jospin introduced a bill, which ultimately became law, to strengthen law enforcement
agencies. The law, which expires at the end of 2003, provides prosecutors and police
greater authority to intercept messages sent on the Internet, to explore possible credit
card fraud, to search vehicles, and to search an individual’s belongings at airports and
in other public places, such as stadiums. The Socialists and the center-right supported
the legislation in parliamentary debates; the Greens and Communist Party opposed

66For example, during the student riots of 1968, police in university towns made active
efforts to visit or contact foreign students at their domiciles or on campuses; and in 1978,
when the kidnaped former Italian Prime Minister Aldo Moro was rumored briefly to be held
in France, the police routinely stopped selected individuals on the street and asked for their

it, and contended that it would exacerbate existing tensions between French citizens
of North African origin and other citizens, given a perception that such measures
would be carried out mostly against French people of Arab background.67 While
some Socialist deputies seemed uneasy with the law, virtually all voted in favor of
it. Robert Badinter, a former Socialist Minister of Justice and widely respected
internationally as a defender of civil liberties, endorsed the legislation.
In January 2002, the French and U.S. governments signed an agreement
allowing the U.S. Customs Service to send inspectors to the major port of Le Havre.
There, the U.S. inspectors have joined French counterparts to inspect sea cargo
containers for the possible presence of weapons of mass destruction intended for
shipment to U.S. ports.
Al Qaeda and France
France’s current concerns over terrorism do not stem solely from Al Qaeda
attacks on the United States because Al Qaeda as well as other similarly-minded
terrorist groups, have been active against French targets as well. In 2000, French and
German police and intelligence agencies uncovered, and thwarted, a plan to blow up
the cathedral in Strasbourg, a major historic and cultural landmark. On September
21, 2001, French police arrested seven men of Algerian background, and charged
them with planning to blow up the U.S. Embassy in Paris. Richard Reid, the alleged
“shoebomber” arrested in December 2001 for attempting to bomb an airplane,
appears to have relied in part upon a network of support in France. He spent a period
of time in Paris before his departure for the United States.
Al Qaeda has carried out at least one successful attack against France. On May
6, 2002, Al Qaeda operatives exploded a car bomb in Karachi, Pakistan, that killed
11 French naval personnel. The French navy had sent men to Karachi as part of a
contract to supply submarines to the Pakistani government. French officials have
stated that their personnel were a target because of France’s military role in the
conflict against the Taliban and Al Qaeda in Afghanistan.
French and U.S. officials have also described the apparent bombing of a French
oil tanker, the Limburg, off the coast of Yemen on October 6, 2002, as an act of
French officials also have a strong interest in the case of Zacarias Moussaoui,
a French citizen of Moroccan background, arrested in the United States in August

2001, and a professed member of Al Qaeda. The Moussaoui case is discussed below.

67“Les députés se prononcent sur le dispositif antiterroriste du gouvernement,” Le Monde
(henceforth LM), Nov. 1, 2001, p. 8. There is a measure of “profiling” in France, as North
African Arabs and Africans appear more likely to be stopped in such places as subway and
train stations than other individuals. At the same time, individuals of all races are routinely
subjected to extensive searches by the police of their baggage in airports, before departure
and upon arrival.

Active Steps of Policy Implementation
The French government has taken an array of active steps in its effort to subdue
terrorism since September 11, 2001. These steps include dedication of resources to
law enforcement agencies, arrests of suspected terrorists, extradition of suspected
terrorists, and enhanced efforts to stem money laundering and illegal migration. At
the same time, constraints on resources have limited measures contemplated by the
Law Enforcement. At a time of great budget strictures, France is in the
process of allocating money for the hiring and training of more police. In July 2002,
the new government, appointed by President Chirac, introduced into parliament a bill
that will allocate $5.6 billion for the period 2003-2007 to hire 7,000 more police with
national and investigative authority (gendarmes) and 6,500 more police for localities.
The gendarmes and local agents, in the view of many critics, have long maintained
a rivalry and have failed to establish sufficient cooperation. The parliament’s bill
seeks to remedy this shortcoming by forming an agency that will supply a joint
command and technology to share information. The new agency will answer directly
to the newly created Conseil de Sécurité Intérieure (Internal Security Council),
headed by President Chirac. While treated politically as an effort to provide security
in a perceived environment of rising crime, the key issue in the legislative and
presidential elections of May-June 2002, some of the police will also be used to
combat terrorism. Three hundred of the new gendarmes and 300 of the new agents
will concentrate on combating terrorism and organized crime. The bill, once it
becomes law, will also create a reserve force of retired agents who can be recalled
“in the event of exceptional circumstances or crises.” Such a reserve force already
exists for the gendarmes. 68
French authorities have made a number of high-profile arrests since September
11. In February 2002, French police arrested Yacine Aknouche, a French citizen of
Algerian origin, as a key figure in the plot to bomb the Strasbourg cathedral; he has
reportedly supplied information on Moussaoui, Reid, and Abu Zubaydah, the
purported military operations chief of Al Qaeda, all held by the United States. In
June 2002, French authorities arrested another participant in the Strasbourg plot. In
May 2002, after the bombing of naval personnel in Karachi, France sent a team of
special police investigators of terrorism to work with Pakistani police to solve the
case. In the Reid case, France has arrested at least five Pakistanis, who have been69
charged with logistical support of a terrorist.

68“Le projet de loi sur la sécurité réorganise police et gendarmerie,” LM, July 11, 2002, p.
10. The substantial majority enjoyed by Chirac’s electoral coalition of parties in Parliament
means that the bill is certain to pass, according to French officials.
69“Des centaines d’islamistes arrêtés au Pakistan...,” LM, May 8, 2002, p. 2; “Face au
terrorisme, M. Chirac prend seul la tête de l’exécutif,” LM, May 10, 2002, p. 1; “French
investigators getting an earful on Al Qaeda,” Washington Post (henceforth WP), Feb. 12,
2002, p. A14; and “Cinq personnes interpellées dans l’enquête sur Richard Reid,” LM, June

13, 2002, p. 13.

The Moussaoui Case. France has played a key role in the Moussaoui case,
although aspects of this role are in dispute, and are controversial. On August 16,
2001, U.S. officials arrested Moussaoui on a visa violation after he raised suspicions
in his efforts to learn to fly a Boeing 747 at an American flight school. The FBI,
through the U.S. embassy in Paris, sought information from French internal
intelligence authorities because Moussaoui is a French citizen. In response, on
August 29 and 30, 2001, the French government gave the FBI two notes that
described Moussaoui as having terrorist connections, according to a French journalist
who apparently examined, but was not permitted to copy, the notes. The journalist
has written that the notes state that Moussaoui attempted to recruit Islamic extremists
in London for training in Afghanistan; that he encouraged Algerian terrorists in their
activities; and that France wanted him extradited to Paris for charges relating to
terrorism. The reporter did not write that the notes described Moussaoui as a
member of Al Qaeda.70 An FBI agent in the United States contends that the
information supplied by France was sufficient to identify Moussaoui as a terrorist,
but the agent’s efforts before September 11 to obtain a warrant to search his
computer hard drive in the United States were unsuccessful.
Although France has protested U.S. intentions to give Moussaoui the death
penalty, Paris has reportedly continued to give the U.S. government information on
him, with the provision that this information in and of itself not lead to his conviction
on charges resulting in his execution. In addition, Paris has allowed U.S. officials to
interview witnesses in France, including Moussaoui’s family. Some French officials,
possibly seeking to defuse a dispute with the United States over the death penalty,
have reportedly explored extradition of Moussaoui to France for prosecution on
terrorist charges, after his U.S. trial,71 with the implication that he could serve a
prison sentence in France rather than be executed in the United States.
There has been some sparring in the French press that the United States has been
too “soft” on terrorism, that the CIA is “too white and too Protestant” and unwilling
to hire foreign agents who know the Islamic world and who can serve “as informers,
smoking a joint or having a drink with low-lifes” to obtain information abroad.72 In
this view, French police and intelligence officials, in contrast, are not afraid to take
such steps, and have individuals of Middle Eastern origin in key intelligence
positions. More indirectly, French officials reject any notion that France has not
given a full effort in the conflict against terrorism; some French observers say that
there was ample basic evidence available in the Moussaoui case to have prevented
September 11.

70“Moussaoui: ce que la DST a transmis au FBI,” L’Express, June 11, 2002.
71In contrast to information in the L’Express article, another report states that French
officials contend that they told the FBI in August 2001 that Moussaoui was a member of Al
Qaeda; the FBI contends that it did not receive such information. “French suspect
Moussaoui in post 9-11 plot,” New York Times, July 28, 2002, p. 20; “Paris ‘regrette’ la
décision de John Ashcroft,” LM, March 30, 2002, p. 4.
72See, for example, Jean Guisnel, “Les Américains ne connaissent pas les islamistes,” LM,
June 18, 2002. Guisnel is a journalist, and a frequent critic of U.S. intelligence.

Extradition Cases: France and Algeria. In two recent instances, France
has expelled to Algeria individuals who are reportedly subject to the death penalty
in Algiers. Nacer Hamani, convicted in France of attempting to bomb a train in
1995, was sent to Algeria by the French government in October 2001 even though
a French court had sought to block his extradition on the grounds that he was a GIA
member, and as such would receive harsh treatment from the Algerian government.
French officials contended that he was not a political militant and would not
therefore be subject to the death penalty in Algeria, although he had been condemned
in France as a terrorist. In November 2001, the French government expelled
Mohamed Chalabi to Algeria, and said that he was not the object of judicial action
in Algiers. French authorities had previously described Chalabi as a member of the
GIA; a French court convicted him in 1999 of the crime of belonging to a terrorist
group. Upon his extradition to Algeria, the French government admitted that it had
made a mistake, and that it had been misled by Algiers, which in fact had an73
international warrant out for Chalabi’s arrest. Some observers in France contend
that there have for many years been strong links between French and Algerian
intelligence, and that, in the renewed political climate against terrorism after
September 11, Paris was sending to Algiers two men over whom the Algerian
government had long sought control.
Money Laundering. More broadly, France has taken other steps to fight
terrorism, one of which is an increased effort to combat money laundering. The U.S.
State Department has described France as attractive to money launderers because it
has a large economy, a stable currency, and a sophisticated financial system. In
France, money launderers use bank deposits, gold bullion transactions, casinos, and
purchases of real estate, for example, to conceal the origins of money gained from,
or to be used for, criminal purposes. At the same time, the State Department has
stated that France has “a comprehensive anti-money laundering regime.”
For instance, French officials have worked closely with the United States in a
high-profile case against Russian organized crime. On June 10, 2002, French and
Italian police arrested 50 individuals in France and Italy who controlled a criminal
web that had laundered several hundred million dollars in recent years. The French
and Italian governments in part used information reportedly supplied by the FBI. At
the same time, in France, as in other countries with developed economies, including
the United States, authorities believe that there are severe limits to combating money
laundering. In such countries, complex legal economies and integrated financial
systems make difficult most efforts to seize money and trace it back to an illegal
source, especially after it has found its way into a legal investment, such as a casino
or hotel; the integration of financial systems throughout the European Union has
further complicated the task for authorities. In this view, current French law may
place too great a burden, for example, on bank or insurance officials by requiring

73“Le Conseil d’Etat autorise l’expulsion vers l’Algérie de l’islamiste Nacer Hamani,” LM,
Oct. 17, 2001, p. 14; “Les autorités françaises embarrassées après l’expulsion vers l’Algérie
de Mohamed Chalabi,” LM, Nov. 22 ,2001, p. 38.

them to uncover the origins of many investments because they lack the investigative
skills and resources to do so.74
Immigration Policy. Issues in immigration and asylum policy in France have75
moved increasingly into the EU arena for decision-making. Migration policy is
controversial in France in part because the country has for many years accepted
immigrants from regions in turmoil, and in part because it has 5-6 million inhabitants
of Muslim background. Restrictions on immigration therefore have political
implications, discussed more fully in the next section. France played an integral part
in recent EU decisions on migration policy. Paris endorsed measures to strengthen
external EU border controls, while still observing the Schengen rules; to establish a
common EU visa format, with digital photographs to deter fraud; to create an EU
database listing all visas turned down throughout the Union, to prevent “visa-
shopping,” in which visa applicants denied in one country go to another to re-apply;
and to build another database of fingerprints of asylum-seekers to ensure that if
turned away in one EU country, they will be turned away in another.
On a bilateral basis, France and Italy have established a joint border patrol to
prevent migrants with a valid visa in one country from moving to another. Similarly,
joint patrols are being established with the United Kingdom and Belgium. The
internal security bill introduced in parliament in July 2002 will supply funds for 700
border police assigned to border patrol and to control illegal immigration.
The French government requires that visa-holders inform the police of their
domicile; enforcement of such a requirement is difficult because France, as is true in
many EU countries, lacks the resources to monitor the movements of all immigrants.
As in most EU countries, the issue of asylum has generated intense political debate.
While many in the French political elite wish to preserve France’s longstanding
position as a place of asylum for those in danger of persecution in their home
countries, there is widespread belief that the system is frequently abused by those
who are in no danger. Approximately 15% of requests for asylum are approved, and
in the 18 to 24 months usually required to resolve a request, many of those asking
asylum disappear into the underground economy and become illegal immigrants,
sometimes moving on to other EU countries. In July 2002 President Chirac promised
to dedicate resources to make the system more efficient by having decisions made on
asylum requests within one month. This time frame would place less burden on
authorities to monitor applicants and ensure that those refused asylum leave the
country and, under new EU procedures, be refused asylum in other Union member
At Seville, France and several other countries blocked an effort by some EU
members to reduce aid to developing countries that fail to act to curb illegal

74U.S. Dept. of State, International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, March 2002, p. XII-
116-117; “Arrestations en France et en Italie...,” LM, June 12, 2002, p. 4; “La lutte contre
le blanchiment,” LM, Nov. 4-5, 2001, p. 18.
75Incorporated as part of this report, for detail, see Kristin Archick (CRS consultant), Europe
and Counterterrorism: Strengthening Police and Judicial Cooperation, CRS RL31509, p.

4-5,10-11, 24.

emigration to the Union. Paris saw the effort as a potentially punitive policy that
would not solve the problem, and, in fact, might exacerbate it by limiting
developmental assistance to countries needing to strengthen their economies, an
objective that would ostensibly reduce the desire of individuals to emigrate. An
additional consideration was France’s concern that its Muslim population might see
such a policy as aimed at the Maghreb, a region that supplies a large percentage of
immigrants to France.
Resources. Resources are a significant problem in successful implementation
of many law-enforcement policies. While to some extent resources are a reflection
of political will, competing priorities play a major role in final choices made. Already
noted is the difficulty in tracking visa-holders. Some French officials wish to upgrade
imaging equipment at airports and seaports, and believe that the financial costs of
such a step could be undertaken only if there were a terrorist attack of major
proportions on French soil. Others cite the joint effort with the United States to
examine cargoes at Le Havre. In January 2002, France agreed to invite a team of
U.S. officials to inspect containers for possible smuggling of weapons of mass
destruction, and other contraband. Considerable resources are necessary for this task.
In June 2001 alone, for example, 108,300 sea cargo containers entered the United
States from Le Havre; France simply lacks the personnel and equipment to inspect76
any but a small proportion of such containers.
Domestic and Foreign Policies and
the Conflict Against Terrorism
France has long experience in managing recurrent surges in terrorism; its
officials do not believe that terrorism can be eradicated or subdued in a foreseeable
time frame. French officials tend to say that the United States is “obsessed” with
terrorism, and that U.S. officials must put the issue in perspective. While the French
government views terrorism as a significant threat, Paris has shaped its anti-terrorism
policy in a context that French officials believe to be broader, and more realistic, than
U.S. policy.
France’s long, intertwined history with the Middle East influences its policy
debate on terrorism. While the French government supports key U.S. objectives in
dismantling Al Qaeda, there is great political sensitivity in France to any issue that
involves the Muslim world. A legacy of the French colonial empire is the presence
of 5 to 6 million Muslims, mostly north Africans, living in France, a population that
successive governments have found difficult to integrate into French society. There
is considerable tension in the French population between those of Caucasian
background and those of north African origin. In a recent poll, 33% of those
contacted stated that north Africans “cannot be integrated” into French society; 56%

76“Le Havre joins U.S. customs anti-terror security initiative,” Dept. of State, July 1, 2002.
Resources are also a significant problem in U.S. ports. In June 2002, CRS analysts visited
a major U.S. east-coast port. There, they found that the U.S. government has only a small
number of inspectors available, resulting in only a very limited sampling of containers being
examined. In 2001, an estimated 5.7 million containers entered U.S. ports from abroad.

said that “there are too many immigrants in France.”77 Jean-Marie Le Pen, the
presidential candidate for the racist National Front in the May-June 2002 elections,
appealed to such sentiments with an anti-crime platform that described “the suburbs,”
where most poor north Africans live, as a breeding ground for crime and terrorism.
During the debate in fall 2001 over the bill to give the government more law
enforcement authority to fight terrorism, several deputies contended that the same
conditions spawning crime in the suburbs also were spawning terrorism; in their
view, legislation that enhanced the government’s ability to fight crime served the
cause of fighting terrorism. Officials in the Jospin government criticized such
thinking as evidence of prejudice against north Africans,78 and President Chirac also
has disavowed such a link. But the point remains that the issue of terrorism
immediately causes a debate over sensitive social issues.
Events in the Middle East have an immediate reverberative effect in France.
The intensification of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict since Ariel Sharon has become
prime minister in Israel has led to increased street violence in France between young
people of north African origin and French Jews. While it is likely true, according to
an EU study, that most discrimination in employment and through general social
exclusion is against north Africans, most violent acts that qualify as hate crimes in
France are against Jews, and are reportedly committed by young men of north
African origin.79
The presence of a large Muslim population in France plays a strong role in
shaping French policy towards Israel and the Arab states. French officials, and their
counterparts in many EU states, are privately extremely critical of the Bush
Administration’s policy that, in their view, unduly favors Israel and supports an
aggressive Israeli policy towards the Palestinians. They sharply disagree with the
Administration’s view that the Sharon government, in using military force against the
Palestinians, is striking a blow against terrorism; in contrast, they believe that the
Sharon government’s policy is fueling a terrorist reaction. After a meeting with the
heads of state of six other EU governments in November 2001, President Chirac said
that the group was unanimous in thinking that, while the Middle East conflict was not
causing terrorism, “it is true that it makes it easier and creates a climate that... is
favorable to Muslim extremists and fundamentalists, notably bin Laden.”80
Other U.S. policies in the conflict against terrorism have also led France to
distance itself from elements of the Bush Administration’s leadership. Some French
officials believe that the United States squandered an opportunity in September and

77Ariane Chebel D’Appollonia, “The National Front and anti-Semitism in France,” Center
on the United States and France, Brookings Institution, July 2002. The same poll found that

10% believe that “there are too many Jews in France.”

78“Les députés se prononcent...,” LM, Nov. 1, 2002, p. 8.
79“Les Juifs premières victimes des violences racistes,” Le Nouvel Observateur, Jan. 24-30,

2002, p. 6ff; “Anti-Islamic reactions in the EU after the terrorist acts against the USA,”

European Monitoring Center on Racism and Xenophobia (an EU body), May 23, 2002.
80“Les dirigeants européens soulignent les limites de l’action militaire,” LM , Nov. 6, 2001,
p. 4.

October 2001 to lay the groundwork for a concerted, joint alliance against terrorism
when the Administration decided to use U.S. forces almost exclusively in
Afghanistan against Al Qaeda and the Taliban. President Bush’s use of the phrase
“Axis of Evil” to describe Iraq, Iran, and North Korea led many French officials to
question the Administration’s judgment, as has the current policy of threatening
conflict with Iraq. A French government official said in October 2002 that French
Intelligence Services have found no link between Al Qaeda and Iraq, in contrast to
the views of the Bush Administration.81 The French government, while frequently
critical of Saddam Hussein’s regime, believes that a range of political measures must
be exhausted before resorting to war with Iraq. French officials, like their European
counterparts, believe that war with Iraq, at a time when the Middle East is unsettled
by the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, could lead to the destabilization of moderate Arab
governments, and further tension in European cities where there are sizable Muslim
populations.82 In addition, France has supported an EU initiative to engage Iran
through agreements that encourage trade and investment.
While France has taken steps since September 11 to build cooperation with the
United States in law enforcement in the conflict against terrorism, broader issues of
foreign and domestic policy have resulted in the French government shaping its own
actions at home and in the European Union, with a careful and reserved reference to
U.S. initiatives.

81“‘No Iraqi link with Al Qaeda,’ says France” FT, October 7, 2002, p.2.
82Interviews; Jean Daniel, “L’Amérique, hélas,” Le Nouvel Observateur, Feb. 14-20, 2002,
p. 28-29.

Ger many*
The German response to the 9/11 terrorist attacks against the United States was
immediate and unprecedented in scope for that country. Setting aside its post-World
War II prohibition against deploying forces outside of Europe and overcoming
pacifist leanings of at least one faction of the ruling coalition, Germany quickly
offered military and other assistance to the United States. Opinion polls showed that
the government had broad popular backing for its decisions at the time. German
efforts in the fight against terrorism have expanded across a wide spectrum.
Germany’s role is particularly important given the number of Al Qaeda members and
9/11 plotters who lived in Germany, taking advantage of liberal asylum policies and
low surveillance.
As in the case of other U.S. allies, some differences in perspective over how to
pursue the campaign against terrorism have emerged in the ensuing months,
especially as the debate over next steps has moved beyond Afghanistan to other parts
of the world. While Germany was at the height of its political campaign in advance
of federal elections on September 22, 2002, some of these differences were
A certain degree of irritation has arisen over how the United States has handled
its allies. The wide-spread view exists that the United States has not adequately
consulted them, listened to their concerns, or included them in decision-making.
Germans do not look at terrorism as the top priority among issues facing them, as
they believe that the United States does. Given their own considerable experience
with terrorism in recent decades, many Germans feel that the United States is not
taking a balanced long term view of the problem and may be overreacting. Many
Germans also feel that the United States is relying too heavily on military solutions
and even object to the use of the term “war” to describe the anti-terrorist campaign.
As time has elapsed since 9/11, German public enthusiasm for the war on terrorism
seems to have waned. Many are now concerned over the economic costs of the war
and that German and allied forces could become bogged down in an endless
On the U.S. side there has been some impatience with the slow pace of German
arrests of suspected terrorists. Additionally, U.S. officials have expressed annoyance
over German criticism of U.S. policies and actions, especially with regard to a
possible strike against Iraq.

*Prepared by Francis T. Miko, Specialist in International Relations, Foreign Affairs,
Defense, and Trade Division, CRS. October 17, 2002.

Germany’s Own Experience with Terrorism
Over the past three decades, Germany has experienced terrorist attacks at home
and against its citizens abroad. During the 1970s and 1980s, West Germany faced
numerous attacks by domestic terrorists associated with the extreme leftist Baader-
Meinhof Gang and the Red Army Faction (RAF). Other terrorist acts in Germany
involved foreign groups. The most notorious was the attack on Israeli athletes at the
1972 Munich Olympics, carried out by Palestinian terrorists. A 1986 Berlin disco
bombing that killed American soldiers was attributed to Palestinians, allegedly
working with Libyan agents. Prior to 1995, the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK)
carried out a number attacks, mainly against Turkish citizens on German soil. A
group calling itself the Anti-Imperialist Cell claimed responsibility for a number of
bombings targeting conservative politicians in 1995. After the arrests of two people
in conjunction with the bombings, no further incidents were reported involving this
group. Most terrorist incidents in Germany in recent years have involved hate crimes
by “skin head” and other right wing groups against immigrants and foreigners,
especially in the former East Germany. Germany continues to track down and
prosecute members of the earlier terrorist groups.83
Eleven Germans are believed to have died in the World Trade Center attack.
The bombing of a Tunisian synagogue in April 2002 , reportedly linked to Al Qaeda,
killed 21 people, including 14 Germans. U.S. and German authorities have been
concerned over mounting evidence that Germany was a key center for the planning
of the attacks of 9/11 and that terrorist cells for some time, even before 9/11, saw
Germany as one of the easier places in Europe from which to operate. Key figures
in the attacks were part of a Hamburg cell. Terrorists were able to take advantage of
Germany’s liberal asylum laws, as well as strong privacy protections, and rights of
religious expression which in the past shielded activities in Islamic Mosques from
surveillance by authorities.
Response to 9/11
Immediately after the September 11 attacks, German Chancellor Gerhard
Schroeder expressed Germany’s “unlimited solidarity” with the United States.
Germany, along with other NATO countries, invoked Article V of the North Atlantic
Treaty on September 12, 2001. Chancellor Schroeder formally offered military
forces to the United States after the German Bundestag agreed to the deployment of
troops on November 16.
To respond militarily to 9/11, Germany had to overcome deeply held opposition
to committing its forces to foreign wars. German views about the role of its military
are influenced by the legacy World War II. Following the Second World War,
Germany’s constitution was interpreted as strictly limiting deployment of its forces
outside of the NATO area. This interpretation was challenged in the early 1990s and
the Constitutional Court ruled in July 1994 that German troops could take part in
U.N. peacekeeping missions, but the Bundestag had to approve any deployment by
a simple majority. The Court’s decision specified that Germany could assign forces

83U.S. Department of State. Patterns of Global Terrorism, 2001.

to NATO operations directed at implementing resolutions of the U.N. Security
Council. Committing German forces also required overcoming the pacifist leanings
of at least part of the governing coalition.84 The current German government consists
of a coalition between Schroeder’s center-left Social Democrats and the
environmentalist Greens. The leading Green politician, Joschka Fischer, serves as
Vice Chancellor and Foreign Minister. Countering arguments from others in his
party that Germany cannot and should not commit itself to an armed conflict, the
Foreign Minister said: “We can’t duck our heads and expect we will be spared.
Germany is too close to what’s happening. This was an attack on global society.”85
Among U.S. allies, Germany is most eager to build a multilateral response to
the threat of terrorism through the United Nations, NATO, and the European Union.
German officials view such multilateralism as helping to create and sustain the
broadest possible international legitimacy for any U.S.-led response.
In addition to providing troops, Germany has taken a number of non-military
steps in the campaign against terrorism. On the diplomatic front, Germany hosted
the international conference to decide on an interim government and future political
arrangements for Afghanistan, resulting in the December 2001 Bonn Agreement. In
2001, Germany provided $46.2 million in humanitarian and development assistance
to Afghanistan. At the Tokyo meeting of aid donors, Germany pledged $69.4 million
in 2002 and a total of $278 million over four years for the post-war reconstruction of
Afghanistan. Germany also committed $1.7 million to the Afghanistan Interim
Authority Fund. Germany is leading efforts to build an Afghan police force and
police academy and has contributed $8.7 million to the effort.86
Domestic Actions
The German government has taken extensive domestic measures against
terrorism since 9/11, in the legal, law enforcement, financial, and security realms.
The first step taken was to identify weaknesses in the laws that allowed some of the
terrorists to live and plot in Germany largely unnoticed. After 9/11, Germany adopted
two major anti-terrorism packages in 2001. Once implemented, these were to remain
in force for five years. The first package targeted loopholes in German law that
permitted terrorists to live and raise money in Germany. The second was aimed at
improving the effectiveness and communication of intelligence and law enforcement
agencies at the federal and state levels. Some $1.3 billion in funding was also
provided. 87
New laws provided the German intelligence community much greater lattitude
to carry out operations. Legislation governing private associations was tightened to

84Financial Times, November 26, 2001.
85“Germany warns its people: ‘We’re in for very bitter times,’” DPA, Sept. 17, 2001.
86German Embassy Press Office. Fact Sheet. Germany’s Contribution to the Coalition
Against Terrorism. May 10, 2002.
87German Embassy Press Office. Fact Sheet. Germany’s Contribution to the Coalition
Against Terrorism. May 10, 2002.

allow the government greater freedom to act against extremist groups. The immunity
of religious groups and charities from investigation or surveillance by authorities was
revoked, as were their special privileges under right of assembly laws. The criminal
code was changed to allow prosecution of terrorists in Germany, even if they
committed terrorist acts abroad. More authority was granted to the Federal Office for
the Protection of the Constitution, the Military Counterintelligence Service, the
Federal Intelligence Service, the Federal Criminal Police Office and the Federal
Border Police, specifically in the gathering and evaluating information.
Communication and sharing of information among these agencies and with law
enforcement authorities at the state level was facilitated. Border controls were
tightened. Steps were also taken to tighten air traffic security, including the creation
of a federal air marshal program.
Given that key members of the group carrying out the 9/11 attack had been
living in Germany, the government launched a major effort to identify and eliminate
terrorist cells. More than 500 officers of the Federal Criminal Police Force were
assigned to investigating the September 11 attacks. The Public Prosecutor General
began 17 investigative proceedings against Islamic-fundamentalist terrorists. Arrest
warrants were issued for three terror suspects who fled the country. One other
suspect was arrested. In their investigations, German authorities worked closely with
the FBI and CIA, whose agents also participated in a liaison capacity in the Hamburg
investigations. The Federal Criminal Police Office assigned two permanent liaison
officers to Washington and sent two officers from its special commission to the FBI.
In the financial area, new measures against money laundering were announced
in October 2001. A new office within the Ministry of Interior was charged with
collecting and analyzing information contained in financial disclosures. Procedures
were set up to better enforce asset seizure and forfeiture laws.88 German authorities
were given wider latitude in accessing financial data of terrorist groups. Steps were
taken to curb international money laundering and improve bank customer screening
procedures. The Federal Criminal Police Office set up an independent unit
responsible for the surveillance of suspicious financial flows. Measures to prevent
money laundering include the checking of electronic data processing systems to
ensure that banks are properly screening their clients' business relationships and
following the requirement to set up internal security systems. More than 200 bank
accounts containing some $4 million total have been frozen as part of financial
sanctions against terrorist networks.
Political Issues and Differences
While U.S.-German cooperation against terrorism has been solid, occasional
differences and sources of friction have been evident. Critics have questioned
whether Germany is cooperating to the maximum extent possible, given that so many
of the 9/11 plotters appear to have been based in Germany. Defenders of the German
record argue that Germany’s insistence on maintaining the rule of law and protecting

88U.S. Department of State. Bureau for International Narcotics and Law Enforcement
Affairs. International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, March 2002. Chapter 12, p.117-


civil liberties should not be interpreted as a lack of political will to go after the
terrorists. Germany’s own history during the Nazi era provides ample reason for
German authorities to resist pressure to exceed what the law permits for the sake of
temporary expediency and makes the protection of civil liberties a paramount
As a result of the emphasis on guarding civil liberties, the German law
enforcement and intelligence communities face more bureaucratic hurdles, stricter
constraints, and closer oversight than those in many other countries, even after 9/11
and the passage of new legislation to improve their effectiveness. They are required
to operate with greater transparency. Privacy rights of individuals and the protection
of personal data are given prominent attention. These protections are extended to
non-citizens residing in Germany as well. Police are prohibited from collecting
intelligence and can only begin an investigation when there is probable cause that a
crime has been committed. In turn, intelligence agencies cannot make arrests and
information collected covertly cannot be used in court.
Some media criticism of the German handling of 9/11 has suggested that, given
the amount of information that was available, German authorities should have dug
deeper and done more to unravel what the Hamburg cell was up to before the attacks.
Some lapses have been identified. For example, federal intelligence authorities
requested surveillance of the Hamburg apartment of suspected terrorists, including
hijackers Mohamed Atta, Ziad Jarrah, and Marwan Al Shhehi, in 2000 but the
request was not acted on by Hamburg police, due to poor communication.89 Recent
evidence suggests that the Hamburg Al Qaeda cell was planning the World Trade
Center attack as early as the spring of 2000.90 Some of the recent changes in law
were designed to address the communications problems.
The evidentiary bar is set very high in Germany. As a result, German authorities
have arrested, interviewed, and searched the homes of a number of suspects but
released them for lack of evidence. For example, the United States has been pressing
for the arrest of Syrian national Mahmoud Darkazani who is reported to have held
power of attorney for terrorists involved in 9/11. While German authorities are
keeping him under surveillance, they have been unable to arrest him for lack of
evidence.91 Other prime U.S. suspects who have been detained but released for lack
of evidence include Abdulrahman S. Kouja and Mohammed Belfas, who are believed
to have been connected to the Hamburg cell.92 German authorities also detained
seven suspects involved in extremist activities associated with the Al Qud mosque
in Hamburg and who are likely to have had connections with the Al Qaeda hijack
plotters. These included Abdelghania Mzoudi, a classmate of Mohamed Atta who
acted as his witness when he signed his will. They too were released for lack of
evidence although Mzoudi was subsequently arrested and charged with membership
in the 9/11 plot. He and Mounir Motassadeq, who also witnessed the signing of

89Wall Street Journal, November 14, 2001.
90Associated Press, August 29, 2002.
91The New York Times, July 11, 2002.
92Wall Street Journal, July 8, 2002.

Mohamed Atta’s will and is charged with aiding the terrorists by wiring them money
while in flight school in the United States are the two in custody. International arrest
warrants have been issued for three other suspects who fled Germany shortly after the
attacks and are thought to have been involved. They are Said Bahaji, Ramzi (also
known as Ramzi Omar) Ramzi Bilashibh, and Zakaria Eabar.93 Ramzi Bilashibh has
since been arrested in Pakistan. German authorities have decided to forego
extradition, to give precedence to U.S. claims against him. Similarly, the number of
asset seizures and forfeitures in Germany has remained relatively low because of the
high burden of proof that is required.94
On the other side, critics of U.S. policy have complained that the United States
expects but does not readily share information and intelligence itself. One example
cited concerns regarding the case of a Syrian born German suspect, Mohamed Heidar
Zammar, who left Germany and was seized in Morocco. He was immediately
expelled from Morocco and sent to Syria where he was allegedly arrested and
secretly held upon U.S. request. U.S. authorities reportedly believed that he was a
central figure in the 9/11 plot and were frustrated by Germany’s inability or
unwillingness to arrest him or another key figure, Mahmound Darkazani for lack of
evidence. U.S. officials did not inform German officials of Zammar’s capture.95 In
fact, German authorities did not know that he had left the country until they received
a missing persons report from his family and they did not know his whereabouts for
several months.
A significant bilateral information sharing issue has arisen related to captured
terrorists. Germany, like all EU member countries, has abolished the death penalty.
German law does not allow extradition of a person wanted by another country if there
is a possibility that the person might be executed if found guilty. In previous cases,
Germany extradited suspects only after it had received assurances that the death
penalty would not be imposed. In 1998, Germany arrested and extradited a key
suspect in the 1998 U.S. Embassy bombings in Africa, after U.S. prosecutors agreed
to waive the death penalty. Germany has interpreted its laws to forbid even provision
of evidence relating to such a case, if that information might lead to the imposition
of a death sentence. The United States has been seeking to obtain documents from
Germany related to the case of Zacarias Moussaoui, the so-called 20th hijacker, thus
far unsuccessfully. The German government at first indicated that it would provide
the information sought only if it received assurances that U.S. prosecutors would not
seek the death penalty for Moussaoui, a French citizen. Subsequently, German
officials indicated that they might provide the documents even without such
assurances, if the United States would agree not to seek the death penalty solely
based on the evidence gained from Germany, a position similar to that of France in

93Los Angeles Times, September 22, 2001.
94U.S. Department of State. Bureau for International Narcotics and Law Enforcement
Affairs. International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, March 2002. Chapter 12, p.117-


95The New York Times, July 11, 2002.

other such instances. Recent government statements suggest that the issue may be
close to resolution.96
Germany and the United States also differ on the question of the status of
prisoners, particularly the Al Qaeda and Taliban detainees in Guantánamo Bay.
Germany’s Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer and other politicians have argued that
all detainees should be granted formal status as prisoners of war. Germans, like other
Europeans, have also criticized U.S. plans to use military tribunals to try at least
some of the terrorist suspects. Such tribunals are seen as unnecessary and
counterproductive. They were not used by Germany and other European countries
in their long campaigns to eradicate terrorism. Some question has been raised
whether terrorist suspects would be extradited by Germany and other EU countries,
if they were likely to face a military tribunal.97
As the war on terrorism has expanded beyond Afghanistan, German officials
seem uncertain over the direction of U.S. policy. Germans have become increasingly
worried that the United States is taking a unilateralist approach in the fight against
terrorism and that German views and concerns might not be taken into account even
though Berlin has placed its own forces on the line. These concerns have reportedly
weakened public support for the war. President Bush’s references to an Iraqi,
Iranian, and North Korean “axis of evil” received a negative reaction from German
officials and commentators, fearing a backlash in their relations with these countries
and a widening war. Since 2000, Germany has sought to improve its relations with
Iran. Regarding Iraq, the German government has emphasized that it favors political
pressure over military action.
The prospect of war against Iraq has highlighted differences of perspective
between the two countries. From the beginning Chancellor Schroeder stressed that
Berlin rejected what he termed military “adventures” and warned against a “fixation
on exclusively military measures.”98 In August, as the September 22, 2002, German
elections grew nearer, Chancellor Schroeder sharpened his criticism of U.S. policy,
leading U.S. Ambassador Daniel Coats to the highly unusual step among such close
allies of delivering a message to the Chancellery protesting his remarks. Mr.
Schroeder warned that an attack on Iraq would not be widely accepted as a defensive
measure and might destroy the coalition against terrorism. He signaled that Germany
would neither participate in nor help pay for such a war but would pursue its own
interests. 99
As elsewhere in Europe, the treatment of Germany’s large Muslim population
and relations with Islamic countries remain sensitive issues influencing anti-terror
policies. The country has a strong record of tolerance and protecting Muslim
religious freedoms. However, that record could allow the German government to

96Washington Post, June 11, 2002.
97The Wall Street Journal, November 28,2001.
98“Germany may give U.S. military aid but rejects ‘adventures,’ says Schroeder,” Deutsche
Presse-Agentur (DPA), Sept. 19, 2001.
99International Herald Tribune, August 17-18, 2002.

feel in a stronger position to go after Muslim extremists than some of its European
neighbors, should it decide to do so. Profiling is considered an acceptable means for
identifying likely terrorists in Germany.

A number of factors have contributed to and complicated the Greek approach
to dealing with international terrorism. During the military junta, 1967-1974, the
police were responsible for serious human rights violations. In reaction, Greeks
perceived the police and government as a greater threat to their safety than terrorists.
And post-junta, democratic governments almost systematically weakened the police.
Police were notoriously ill-paid and chronically understaffed, and they lacked the
technology and other advanced tools to do their job. Thus, they were ineffective in
countering terrorism. Moreover, public sympathies often seemed to reside more with
perpetrators rather than with terror victims, who were seen as mostly government or
business elite, rich, or foreign.
A strain of anti-Americanism afflicts public attitudes in Greece and stems
primarily from U.S. support for the junta. In recent years, antipathy toward the
United States has worsened due to the Greeks’ sympathy for their co-religionists and
historic allies, the Serbs, during the U.S. campaign in Kosovo and against Yugoslav
leader Slobodan Milosevic. Many Greeks view U.S. demands to counter terrorism
as an infringement on Greek sovereignty and interference in their internal affairs, i.e.,
an effort to control the Greek government or transform it once again into a police
state. Analysts argue that, at times, these attitudes have detracted from the
government’s willingness to cooperate with or accept assistance from the United
States in countering terror. U.S. assistance that was accepted often failed to achieve
its objective. For example, Greek police officers who received counterterrorism
training in the United States were not assigned counterterrorism duties on their return
home.100 This led the U.S. to suspend the training in 1998.
Revolutionary Organization 17 November
Until mid-2002, the Greek record in countering terrorism was regarded as
dismal by a number of commentators. Since 1975, the leftist, nationalist 17
November terrorist group, in particular, was seen to be acting with impunity. The
U.S. State Department’s annual report Patterns of Global Terrorism designates
Revolutionary Organization 17 November as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO).
The group claims responsibility for killing 23 people, including 4 Americans. Its
first victim in 1975 was the CIA station chief in Athens, Richard Welch. 17

100Lambros Papandoniou, Interview with U.S. Ambassador Patrick Theros, Elevtheros Tipos,
June 20, 2000, entered into Foreign Broadcast Information Service (FBIS) online, June 22,

2000. Former U.S. Ambassador to Greece Thomas Niles on 60 Minutes, January 6, 2002.

In January 2000, Greek Public Order Minister Michalis Khrisokhoidhis denied to a visiting
U.S. delegation (in which the author of this analysis participated) that such assignment
problems were happening on his watch.
*Prepared by Carol Migdalovitz, Specialist in Middle Eastern Affairs, Foreign Affairs,
Defense, and Trade Division, CRS. October 8, 2002.

November also bombed U.S. property or businesses in Athens, such as American
Express, IBM, and Citibank.
Former U.S. officials, including former CIA Director James Woolsey and
former U.S. Ambassador to Greece (1993-1997) Thomas Niles, have strongly
implied that links between the ruling Pan-Hellenic Socialist Movement (PASOK)
party or its antecedents and 17 November were responsible for Greece’s lack of
success against 17 November.101 Niles stated that, while he was ambassador, he had
given Greek authorities a list of 17 November suspects, but there was no follow up.102
The Greek government declared that Niles’ claims were “lies,” although Niles had
said he doubted that members of the current PASOK Prime Minister Costas Simitis’
government had contacts with 17 November.103
In 2000, Greece’s performance in fighting terrorism was criticized not only in
Patterns of Global Terrorism, but in a Congressionally-mandated Report of the
National Commission on Terrorism, Countering the Changing Threat of
International Terrorism. The Commission observed that “Greece has been
disturbingly passive in response to terrorist activities,” and noted that the Department
of State had identified it as “one of the weakest links in Europe’s effort against
terrorism.” The Commission suggested that Greece was a candidate for designation
as a “not fully cooperating” country under Sec. 40A of the Arms Export Control Act
as amended, and that the President should consider imposing sanctions on it. Then
Secretary of State Madeleine Albright said that the Administration was not
considering sanctions.
On June 8, 2000, just days after the Commission’s report was issued, 17
November assassinated the British military attache in Athens, Brigadier General
Stephen Saunders, because of what it (mistakenly) claimed was his role in planning
air raids on Yugoslavia.104 The Saunders’ murder may have marked a turning point
in Greek attitudes toward 17 November and toward counterterrorism. Saunders’
widow’s heartrending appeal to the Greek people to bring her husband’s killers to
justice elicited public sympathy. International media coverage of the attack and of
Greece’s counterterrorism record also prompted government concern about possible
harm to Greece’s national image as it prepared to host the 2004 Olympics in Athens.
On July 12, 2000, the government called for a minute of silence and issued an anti-
terrorism message to sensitize the public to the problem.105 The government

101Lambros Papandoniou, The former CIA Director James Woolsey Talks to ‘To Pondiki,’
To Pondiki, June 8, 2000, translation entered into FBIS online, June 8, 2000.
102Papakhelas’ ‘Files’ Program on Mega TV Discusses 17 November, Terrorism, November

6, 2001, translation entered into FBIS online, November 8, 2001.

103A Former U.S. Envoy Links Greek Politicians to Assassin Group, The New York Times,
November 8, 2001.
104“17 November Proclamation Following British Diplomat’s Murder in Athens,”
Elevtherotipia, June 9, 2000.
105The message said, “Terrorism shows contempt for the sanctity of human life, undermines
social cohesion and political stability and therefore is an insult to Greeks. It is a threat to

increased the reward for the arrest of members of 17 November to $4.25 million and
opened confidential telephone lines for potential informers. Greece and Scotland
Yard began to cooperate to solve the murder.
Counterterrorism Efforts
On September 8, 2000, Greek Minister of Public Order Michalis Khrisokhoidhis
and U.S. Attorney General Janet Reno signed a long-planned Memorandum on Police
Cooperation between the Greek police and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
It provides for a range of cooperation “in the prevention, suppression, detection,
disclosure and investigation of crimes” in particular, organized crime; acts of
terrorism; illegal trafficking in weapons, explosives, nuclear materials, poisons;
illegal international actions such as money laundering; counterfeiting; trafficking in
works of art, items of historical heritage; serious crimes against human life and
property; and computer crime. It also provides for cooperation in training and
research in crime prevention.
The Greek government proposed comprehensive legislation to put teeth into its
counterterror effort, and parliament eventually passed it on June 27, 2001. The law
mandates trial by judges or magistrates instead of by jury. Juries had proven
susceptible to intimidation. It sanctions police undercover operations, authorizes
DNA testing without consent and the use of DNA as evidence in court, permits
electronic surveillance beyond wiretaps, and provides for witness protection and
amnesty programs. The law also allows sentencing of members of terrorist groups
for membership alone for up to 10 years no matter when they perpetrated the crimes.
This provision works around a 20-year statute of limitations for the crime of murder
and a 15-year statue of limitations for attempted murder, robberies, and bombings
which might enable 17 November terrorists to escape punishment for crimes
committed years ago. Greece, like other European Union members, does not have
the death penalty. Finally, the law allows for suspending sentences in exchange for
Despite the new anti-terrorism law and improvements in policing, Greece still
failed to apprehend 17 November terrorists. Then, on June 29, 2002 in Piraeus, a
bomb exploded prematurely in the hands of Savvas Xiros, who was not killed. His
capture produced statements which opened a trail to other 17 November terrorists,
safe houses, weapons, and documents. As of this date, 17 alleged members and
leaders have been apprehended. Many may have confessed to obtain leniency,
although the alleged leader and ideologist, 58-year old Professor Alexandros
Giotopoulos (aka Mikhail Ikonomou and Lambros), has denied all charges against

contemporary Greece. It is something foreign to the philosophy and logic of Greece; foreign
to all our traditions. The fight against terrorism is a priority; a priority, not only for the
state, but for the Greek people and their political culture. It is the government’s
commitment and society’s not to stop the effort to root out terrorism; by any means. We
owe this to the victims of terrorism. We owe it to democracy and its human values. We
owe it to Greece.” Reuters, July 12, 2000.

U.S. Ambassador to Greece Thomas Miller has characterized Greece’s
cooperation in combating terrorism as “excellent” and noted “an incredible change
in Greek public opinion,” which now sees 17 November as a group of common
criminals and thieves.106 However, Miller was also quoted as saying, “The arrests are
not enough. There must also be convictions.”107 The record of the Greek judiciary
in trials of other terrorists leads some observers to question whether convictions can
be won.108 It also remains to be seen how thorough the authorities’ crackdown on 17
November will be. Since the arrests, two proclamations have been issued in the
name of the group. One, on July 31, insisted that 17 November was still alive and
threatened to take hostages to exchange for imprisoned comrades. The second
proclamation claimed credit for the theft of weapons from a military arsenal on the
island of Kos, which was discovered on August 2.109 Dora Bakoyianni, the
opposition New Democracy party candidate for mayor of Athens and widow of a 17
November victim, has said that many questions about 17 November remain. She
wants to know more about the group’s decision making.110 Its possible that
Bakoyianni is implying the same conspiracies as Woolsey and Niles, above.

106Greece: A News Review from the Embassy of Greece, Press and Information Office, Vol.

8, No. 7, July 2002.

107A. Marathias, Embarrassment by the Intervention of U.S. Ambassador Thomas Miller,
Elevtheros Tipos, August 9, 2002, translation entered on FBIS online, August 11, 2002.
President Bush congratulated Prime Minister Simitis on the arrests of key members of 17
November. He said that they “underline the important contribution of Greece to the global
war against terrorism.” Karolos Grohmann, Bush praises capture of Greek N17 guerrillas,
Reuters, August 13, 2002.
108In 2001, a long-sought, high-profile Greek terrorist, (not apparently tied to 17 November)
Avraam Lesperoglou was acquitted on appeal after being found guilty in a trial for the
murder of a public prosecutor, the robbery of an armored bank van during which two
security guards were killed, and the killing of three policemen during a shoot-out. Paraskevi
Biskini, The Verdict on the Front Page, Ta Nea, December 3, 2001, translation entered into
FBIS online, December 7, 2001. The Greek Supreme Court eventually granted the
prosecution’s request to cancel the acquittal and Lesperoglou was rearrested in August 2002.
but was acquitted again in September after a new trial. Other suspected terrorists have had
their sentences reduced.
109 The authenticity of the first proclamation has not been established, and Prime Minister
Simitis, Public Order Minister Khrisokhoidhis, and other government spokesmen have
voiced skepticism as to authorship. Simitis: It is not Genuine, Ta Nea, August 1, 2002,
translation entered into FBIS online, August 6, 2002. Regarding the arms theft, a
government spokesman said, “We should not connect everything with terrorism..... There
have been such thefts in the past and evidence has shown that they were committed only to
sell the weapons.” Karolos Grohmann, Greece Plays Down Army Camp Weapons Theft,
Reuters, August 3, 2002.
110Steven Erlanger, Greek Hopes Arrests Earn It Europe’s Embrace, The New York Times,
August 5, 2002.

Counterterrorism Since 9/11
Public Order Minister Khristokhoidhis has said that the Greek police were
participating in the global effort to identify and locate individuals responsible for the
September 11 attacks, but nothing emerged from the Greek investigations.111 Greece
has also said that it is cooperating in intelligence sharing and in the investigation of
suspect bank accounts which might be linked to terrorists. Greece has refused to
allow U.S. agencies to board ships in its territorial waters for inspection, although it
said that Greek officials could carry out searches based on information supplied by
the United States.
The Greek government reports that it has increased security at airports, ports,
power plants, and dams. It suspended flights by small private planes. The Civil
Defense Secretariat has established working groups to draw up emergency plans to
guard against a chemical or biological attack. The armed forces have also established
a section on nuclear, biological, and chemical defense.
Other measures have been proposed or drafted , partly by the European Union
of which Greece is a member, but not yet implemented. These include laws to make
financing of terrorism a crime and strengthening anti-money laundering laws that are
already on the books.112 Again, concern for civil liberties, a legacy of the junta
period, may affect the speed with which Greek legislators address these issues.
Greece has informed its EU partners that it has constitutional impediments to
proposed changes that would ease extradition to the United States. Greek citizens,
including those who perpetrate terrorist acts against Americans, cannot be extradited
to the United States for trial.
No progress has been reported in efforts to apprehend the Revolutionary Nuclei,
also on the U.S. list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations, which was implicated in
arson attacks on and bombings of U.S., Greek and European targets in Greece. Some
press reports suggest that Revolutionary Nuclei may have connections to 17113
November. Revolutionary Nuclei is believed to have been formed in 1996 by
members of the Revolutionary Popular Struggle (ELA), which was responsible for
arson attacks and bombings from 1975-1995. U.S. government sites and businesses
were among ELA’s targets. Greece’s record against ELA also is poor.

111Yeoryios Marnellos, The List of 300 Names is Useless: Second part of two-part interview
with Greek Public Order Minister Khristokhoidis, Elevtherotipia, September 24, 2001,
translation entered into FBIS online, September 25, 2001.
112Reply of the Hellenic Republic to Security Council Resolution 1373 (2001) (fight against
terrorism), 9 January 2002.
113Dhora Andoniou, ELA, 1st May to Follow Next: 17 November Thread leads back to
Theory of Communicating Vessels, I Kathimerini tis Kirakis, July 28, 2002, translation
entered on FBIS online, July 29, 2002.

According to U.S. government sources and others, Greece assisted or
sympathized with Turkish terrorist groups, for some time. Greeks notably favored
the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), a Turkish-Kurdish terrorist group that waged
a 15-year insurgency mainly in southeast Turkey from 1984-1999 and that is on the
U.S. list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations. Many Greeks view the PKK as freedom
fighters waging a liberation struggle. They do not agree that the PKK insurgency was
terrorism, although it took the lives of many innocent civilians. Greek
parliamentarians gave moral support by visiting PKK camps. The PKK allegedly had
offices in Athens and trained at refugee camps nearby. In 1999, PKK leader
Abdullah Ocalan was captured by Turkish commandos acting on a U.S. tip after
leaving the Greek embassy in Kenya. During his search for a safe haven, Ocalan had
landed in Greece and was not apprehended; instead he was assisted there by “senior
government officials.”114 The Greek foreign, interior, and public order ministers
were forced to resign after this fiasco was revealed.
The Ocalan affair led to a change in Greek activity in the spring of 1999, when
new Greek Foreign Minister, George Papandreou launched a policy of rapprochement
with Turkey. The Turkish Foreign Ministry has said that there is now a “sincere and
functional dialogue” with Greek officials concerning 17 November attacks on Turks.
115 Turkey also is now seeking information about possible ties between 17 November
and the Turkish Revolutionary People’s Liberation Party Front (DHKP-C), which is
on the U.S. list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations. Because of the experience with
the PKK and Ocalan, some Turks continue to doubt Greece’s good will in aiding the
apprehension of Turkish terrorists. For example, in July 2002, Turkey alleged that
Dursun Karatas, head of the DHKP-C, was in Athens.116 Turkish newspapers
reported that the two groups had exchanged weapons and that some of the weapons
that 17 November stole from the Greek army were subsequently found in Turkey.
The Greek charge d’affaires in Ankara said that Greece had no information about
Karatas and Greece said that it has not obtained any information from 17 November
prisoners about the DHKP-C.117
Illegal Immigration/Border Controls
Greece is a transit country for illegal immigrants seeking to reach Europe from
the Middle East, South Asia, and Africa. Alone, and in cooperation with Turkey,
with which Greece has signed a bilateral agreement, Greek police have detained
many illegal migrants. After September 11, Greece increased security at entry points
and strengthened border controls.

114U.S. Department of State, Patterns of Global Terrorism, 1999.
115“Sincere” dialogue with Greece on rebel group’s operations - spokesman, Anatolia News
Agency, August 14, 2002, text transmitted by BBC Monitoring Europe, August 14, 2002.
116Turkey complains to Greece about guerrilla leader’s alleged presence, Anatolia News
Agency, text transmitted by BBC Monitoring Newsfile, July 23, 2002.
117Turkish Police Spokesman Discusses Ties Between 17 November, DHKP-C, TRT 2
Television, July 26, 2002, translations entered on FBIS online, July 26, 2002.

Greece also planned to institute centralized control of more secure passports,
i.e., to transfer issuing authority from multiple prefectures to police in one or two
offices nationwide. Although the decision was made in 2001, it had still not been
implemented as of August 2002 because of a freeze on public hiring. Greece also
says that it is planning to supply all passport control checkpoints with more advanced
forgery and counterfeiting detection devices. The lack of such devices is one of the
reasons that Greece has been excluded from the U.S. visa waiver regime.

The events of September 11 generated sincere sympathy in the Republic of
Ireland for the United States. A number of Irish citizens died in the terrorist attacks,
as did many Irish-Americans. Irish officials claim that Ireland has been a solid U.S.
partner in combating terrorism; despite Ireland’s long-held policy of neutrality,
Dublin granted the United States overflight rights and the use of Irish aircraft
facilities during the military campaign in Afghanistan. In addition, Irish law
enforcement authorities have been working closely with U.S. counterparts on
September 11-related investigations. Nevertheless, critics contend that Dublin has
been slow to devote resources and attention to countering terrorist groups beyond
those associated with the conflict in Northern Ireland. They worry that international
terrorists have been able to take advantage of Ireland’s liberal immigration and
asylum policies, and that law enforcement efforts to root these individuals out are
constrained by Ireland’s historical legacy and political considerations.
Legal Responses and Cooperation Against Terrorism
Although Irish law does not yet define terrorism as a crime, Irish officials assert
that their long experience with domestic terrorist groups has resulted in a large body
of laws applicable to terrorist activities. For example, Irish criminal law covers
terrorist acts such as murder or hijacking; the Offenses Against the State Acts 1939-
1998 prohibits membership in and financing of unlawful organizations; and the
Criminal Justice Act of 1994 bans money laundering. Since September 11, Dublin
has sought to implement various U.N. and European Union (EU) initiatives to bolster
Ireland’s legal provisions against terrorism. In October 2001, Ireland signed the 1999
U.N. Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism; the government
is preparing legislation to give it and a number of other U.N. treaties against
terrorism effect in Irish law.118 Dublin also hopes to introduce legislation by the end
of this year to implement the EU’s Framework Decision on Combating
Terrorism–which calls for establishing a common definition of terrorism and
standardized penalties–and is considering how to comply with the EU’s enhanced
directive against money laundering.119 In addition, the government has pledged to
reform Irish laws relating to charities in order to protect against fraud and prevent
such organizations from being used to finance terrorism.
Irish police and intelligence services have been cooperating with U.S.
counterparts to track down and keep tabs on a number of individuals in Ireland who

118To date, Ireland has ratified five of the 12 U.N. conventions against terrorism.
119For a detailed account of EU initiatives to better combat terrorism, see CRS Report
RL31509, Europe and Counterterrorism: Strengthening Police and Judicial Cooperation,
July 23, 2002.
*Prepared by Kristin Archick, Consultant in European Affairs, Foreign Affairs, Defense,
and Trade Division, CRS. August 21, 2002.

may have connections to Al Qaeda, but no charges have yet been filed. Media
reports suggest that Irish authorities have known about the existence of a suspected
Al Qaeda cell in Dublin since at least early 2000 when the FBI discovered that an
Algerian-born naturalized Irish citizen, Hamid Aich, had ties to Ahmed Ressam,
convicted last year in the United States on charges of conspiring to blow up Los
Angeles Airport (LAX).120 The Dublin cell is believed to have numbered between
30 to 40 members at most; it allegedly provided false identification documents such
as passports and visas, and arranged small financial transactions to facilitate the
movement of Al Qaeda members.
Although Aich and several others were arrested during a raid in December 2000
in connection with the LAX bombing plot investigation, they were released shortly
thereafter because Irish authorities claimed sufficient evidence was lacking to hold
or extradite them on conspiracy charges. Section 30 of the Offenses Against the
State Acts permits detention without charges for a maximum of 72 hours. U.S.
investigators were reportedly concerned with Aich’s release, and surprised that the
seized documents, which included a diagram of an electrical switch identical to one
found in Ressam’s apartment, were not enough to bring charges. Irish officials
countered that the switch could be used to repair a tea kettle as well as trigger a
bomb. Aich disappeared from Dublin six weeks before September 11 and has not
been heard from since; the FBI continues to seek him for questioning.121 Some press
reports have also suggested that Aich may have been in contact with members of the
Real IRA, a hard-line splinter group that broke from the Irish Republican Army in


In October 2001, Irish police arrested three Libyans and one Algerian suspected
of having ties to Al Qaeda as part of the investigation into September 11, and seized
about $13,000 in cash as well as numerous documents and financial records. The
four were held for two days, but also released because of a lack of evidence. Irish
law enforcement authorities say all of these suspects remain under close police
surveillance, as do about 30 others in and around Dublin with potential Al Qaeda
connections. One of the Libyans originally arrested in October was briefly arrested
and released again this past July on credit card fraud suspicions. Several of these
individuals have been linked to the Dublin-registered branch of the charity Mercy
International Relief Agency (MIRA), which U.S. authorities believe is one of Bin
Laden’s money-laundering fronts. Two other Islamic charities in Ireland–Islamic
Relief and Blessed Relief–are also suspected Al Qaeda fronts.

120Jim Cusack, “FBI turns spotlight on Al Qaeda’s Dublin operations,” Irish Times, July 31,


121In July 2002, the FBI revealed that travel documents seized during the December 2000
raid on Aich’s office can be linked to Zacarias Moussaoui, accused by the United States ofth
being the “20” September 11 hijacker. Jim Cusack, “Documents found in Dublin are
linked to Al Qaeda,” Irish Times, July 30, 2002; Jim Cusack, “Charges are unlikely in
detention of Arab men,” Irish Times, October 10, 2001.
122Damien Lane and Deirdre Tynan, “Bin Laden gave terrorists bomb cash,” The Mirror,
October 17, 2002.

Irish officials say they are doing everything possible to support U.S.
investigations, but some observers contend that Dublin was slow to address the
dangers posed by Al Qaeda prior to September 11. Although the counter-terrorist
Special Branch of the Garda Síochána (national police) was aware of the Dublin Al
Qaeda cell for several years and had worked with U.S. law enforcement authorities
on the LAX bombing plot probe, the Special Branch remained primarily focused on
domestic Irish terrorist groups related to Northern Ireland. After September 11,
however, a Middle Eastern section was established within the Special Branch. U.S.
officials note that Irish authorities appear increasingly concerned that Ireland could
become a “soft target,” and are anxious to avoid Dublin being the site of an embassy
Some analysts also view Irish history and civil liberty concerns as factors that
may limit Dublin’s freedom of action in responding to terrorism. Extradition, for
example, has always been a sensitive political issue in Ireland. Many in the Irish
Republic viewed Northern Irish “terrorists” as “freedom fighters;” consequently,
those engaged in the conflict in Northern Ireland sometimes found safe haven with
sympathizers in the Republic. Irish judicial authorities have been traditionally
cautious in considering extradition requests–especially for those wanted on
conspiracy or terrorism-related charges–to ensure that individuals are not extradited
for political offenses, which Irish law prohibits. Others suggest that Ireland may also
be less enthusiastic than other EU member states about concluding a possible U.S.-
EU extradition accord, which Washington hopes would permit the extradition of EU
nationals. Ireland firmly supports the EU redline that individuals extradited to the
United States under an eventual agreement must not face the death penalty.
Immigration, Asylum, and Border Controls
The Irish government also claims it is stepping up efforts to stem illegal
immigration, keep better track of foreign nationals, and prevent asylum abuse. Many
illegal immigrants enter Ireland on tourist or student visas, or by claiming asylum,
but then remain after their visas have expired or disappear while their refugee
applications are being processed. The Irish Department of Justice estimates that 40
percent of asylum seekers do not show up for their interviews and about 2,600
rejected applicants are on the run.123 Irish officials note that many measures to
improve immigration controls pre-date September 11, and stem from rising concerns
about the growing number of illegal migrants–as well as criminal human
traffickers–attracted by Ireland’s booming economy over the last decade. Some
analysts also attribute Ireland’s recent popularity as a destination country to Irish
citizenship laws. Unlike other EU states, the Irish Constitution grants citizenship to
any child born in Ireland, and a 1990 Supreme Court judgement gave foreign national
parents and families of Irish-born children residency rights on humanitarian grounds.
About 2,500 asylum-seekers were allowed to remain in Ireland in 2001 on this basis,
up from 1,200 in 1999.124 The majority of asylum-seekers in Ireland are from Nigeria
and Romania.

123Elaine Edwards, “War on refugees,” Daily Mirror (London), July 17, 2002; Nuala
Haughey, “Crackdown fills illegal immigrants with fear,” Irish Times, July 20, 2002.
124Nuala Haughey, “Unique attitude to Irish citizens,” Irish Times, February 21, 2002.

To help enhance law enforcement capabilities to address problems arising from
immigration and asylum issues, Irish officials point out that the Garda National
Immigration Bureau (GNIB) was established within the Garda Síochána in May 2000
to help improve border controls, carry out deportation orders, and work as liaisons
with immigration counterparts in other states. In September 2001, the GNIB
introduced a new computer information system and electronically-generated cards
with digital photos for certain foreign nationals residing in Ireland in an attempt to
prevent counterfeiting of identification cards and promote more accurate record-
keeping.125 The system also contains information on deported foreign nationals. The
GNIB hopes to give immigration officials at all entry points and border crossings
access to the system within a year. In the last few years, Dublin has also sought to
reform its asylum procedures to reduce a backlog of about 13,000 cases–built up
since 1997–and speed processing times. In November 2000, the government began
finger-printing all asylum-seekers, as called for by the Refugee Act of 1996.
Some analysts assert that September 11 has reinforced Dublin’s commitment to
curb illegal immigration and tighten asylum controls to prevent terrorists from
abusing Irish laws. Media reports suggest that two of the Libyans and the Algerian
detained by Irish authorities last October were asylum-seekers.126 Aich and the other
Libyan arrested in October reportedly gained Irish citizenship through the birth of
their children in Ireland. The Irish government is thus increasingly keen to close this
legal loophole, and the Justice Department has begun challenging the precedent
established in the 1990 judgement granting residency to foreign national parents of
Irish-born children. In April 2002, Ireland’s High Court upheld the government’s
decision to order the deportations of several asylum-seekers–a Czech couple and a
Nigerian man–even though their children hold Irish citizenship.127 This past July,
about 40 individuals who had either overstayed their visas or were under deportation
orders were arrested in Operation Hyphen, a series of coordinated raids on more than
100 addresses in Dublin. Observers noted that this sting was the first of its kind in
Ireland to target illegal immigrants. New Justice Minister Michael McDowell has
pledged more such crackdowns in the future.
Although U.S. officials assess that Dublin’s political will to reform its
immigration and asylum policies is currently strong, they point out that border
crossing posts are still behind the technological curve. Many ports of entry in Ireland
lack computer systems, and hence the ability to keep track of the comings and goings
of foreign nationals efficiently. The Republic’s land border with Northern Ireland
also poses a monitoring problem for border control authorities; many asylum-seekers
rejected by the UK are taking domestic ferries to Northern Ireland, from where they
then head south. Others note that despite the GNIB’s mandate to carry out
deportation orders, enforcement difficulties remain. Almost 4,000 deportation orders

125All foreign nationals staying in Ireland over 90 days who are not citizens of the European
Economic Area (the 15 members of the EU, plus Iceland, Norway, and Liechtenstein) must
register with Garda authorities.
126Shawn Pogatchnik, “Police arrest three Libyans, one Algerian on suspicion of supporting
terrorist groups,” AP, October 9, 2001.
127The decision of the High Court will likely be appealed to Ireland’s Supreme Court. Paul
Cullen, “What’s to befall these Irish children?,” Irish Times, April 9, 2002.

of illegal immigrants or failed asylum-seekers have been issued since the GNIB was
formed, but only about 18 percent of these have been enforced. Some attribute this
poor record to insufficient personnel resources; media reports indicate that GNIB
may be beefed up from 120 to 130 officers to help ameliorate this problem.128
Refugee advocates and civil liberty groups may also inhibit the government’s
plans to crack down on illegal immigrants and deport those who have overstayed
their welcome. They strongly criticized the way Operation Hyphen was conducted,
and publicly appealed to the Irish populace for support, claiming that “Ireland’s
experience of emigration should make it a flagship for humanitarian treatment.”129
As for closing citizenship loopholes, the government hopes that its court challenges
will prove successful because it does not view reforming Ireland’s nationality laws
as a viable option. Doing so would entail changing the Constitution, whose
citizenship provisions were strengthened in 1998 as part of the Good Friday Peace
Agreement for Northern Ireland. Hence, Dublin is reluctant to reopen the issue.

128Andrew Bushe, “2,600 asylum seekers on the run in Ireland,” Sunday Mirror (London),
July 7, 2002.
129Frank McNally, “Support groups react angrily after arrests,” Irish Times, July 17, 2002.

The Italian government has a long history of combating domestic and
international terrorism. Over the past quarter century, Italy has developed a stronger
judicial mechanism for dealing with terrorism. For some months after September 11,
Italian officials seemed to believe that Al Qaeda posed a minimal threat to Italy, a
view that affected the government’s law enforcement efforts. Recognition in late
2001 and early 2002 that Al Qaeda had developed a strong logistics network in Italy
led to a more vigorous response to disrupting the terrorists’ network. Politics has
intruded into the anti-terror debate in Italy; the government has within it senior
officials who have strong anti-immigrant views, which are coloring the debate over
how to combat Al Qaeda. Broader international factors, such as the Israeli-Palestinian
conflict in the Middle East and consideration by the Bush Administration of a
military campaign to replace the Iraqi government, are also affecting the debate in
Italy over terrorism.
A History of Combating Terrorism
Italy has grappled with a terrorist threat for many years. The Red Brigades, a
far left group, carried out numerous acts of violence in the 1970s and early 1980s
against Italian political leaders, judges, and business leaders; most notable was the
kidnapping and murder of Aldo Moro, a former prime minister, in 1978. Foreign
terrorist groups have also been active. Abu Nidal’s extremist Palestinian faction
murdered U.S., European, and Israeli nationals in attacks on airliners and airports in
Italy in the 1970s and 1980s.
The Italian government responded to the terrorist attacks of the 1970s and 1980s
with new law enforcement measures. Special police and prosecutors, stiffer
sentences, prison isolation cells, authority for police for emergency searches without
warrants, and more secure public buildings were but some of these measures. By the
early 1980s, these measures contributed to a sharp decrease in terrorist crimes, and
many remain in force today.
The Berlusconi government did not initially make a strong response in law
enforcement to the events of September 11. When U.S. officials warned of possible
terrorist attacks in several Italian cities in late 2001, Italian officials said that the
threat was overstated, and worried about the effect on tourism. A terrorist attack on
a consultant to the current government of rightist Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi,
however, appears to have given energy to the government’s anti-terrorist efforts. In
March 2002, Marco Biagi, an economist advising the government on labor law, was
murdered by domestic, leftist extremists opposed to Berlusconi’s policy to weaken
some rights of Italian workers. In spring 2002, apparent threats (some likely by Al
Qaeda) against the Vatican and cultural monuments in Venice also raised public and

*Prepared by Paul Gallis, Specialist in European Affairs, Foreign Affairs, Defense, and
Trade Division, CRS. August 22, 2002.

political consciousness about terrorism. Since that time, Italian efforts to apprehend
terrorists have increased.
Legislative and Political Responses after September 11
Elements of Italy’s law enforcement response to the events of September 11
have been colored by internal political factors. Prime Minister Berlusconi has in the
past been charged with crimes, such as tax evasion and bribery; he has at times
responded with claims that Italy’s judiciary, which is independent of the executive,
is manipulated by political opponents.
In the wake of September 11, an element of Berlusconi’s fractious relationship
with the judicial system was evident in the EU debate over an arrest warrant able to
reach into every Union state. EU proponents of the arrest warrant sought to use it to
bring terrorists to justice, and to pursue a wide variety of other criminals.
Berlusconi’s government initially argued that the warrant proposal was an inefficient
catch-all, touching on too wide a variety of crimes to be effective. The government
particularly opposed having warrant authority include corruption and fraud, and
sought to have it concentrate more on such high-profile crimes as terrorism and
money-laundering. The prime minister’s critics responded that a Spanish tax
evasion case against Fininvest, the company at the core of his financial empire, was
the motivation for his wishing to eliminate certain crimes within the warrant’s reach.
In the end, his government relented, and accepted broader warrant authority.130
Prime Minister Berlusconi’s government includes a strongly anti-immigrant
party, the Northern League, led by Umberto Bossi. Bossi has made statements
against immigrants from Albania and the Middle East and is widely criticized in Italy
as racist. Berlusconi himself made remarks criticized as intemperate that have
affected the debate over terrorism, and served in some minds to link discussions over
terrorism to those over immigration. Shortly after the terrorist attacks of September

11, he said that “We have to be aware of the superiority of our civilization....

[Christian society is destined] to westernize and conquer” certain populations, such
as the Arab world and communist countries.131 He later apologized for the statement.
Bossi and Gianfranco Fini, leader of the National Alliance (formerly, the Fascist
Party), hold senior positions in the Berlusconi government. They have presented
legislation to curb and control immigration to Italy. Italy has long been seen as a
major point of entry for illegal immigrants in Europe; other EU governments have
complained that immigrants on tourist or student visas arrive in Italy, then move on
to other member states with expired papers. A study by an Italian official in fall 2001
examined the key issues in the debate over immigration in Italy. The study noted the
population decline in Italy and the country’s aging work force; it concluded that
immigration, targeted to encourage workers able to fill specific labor needs, was
necessary to strengthen Italy’s economic future. The author noted that Italy was on
a “migratory fault line,” given its location. As a means to control immigration, the

130“Italy accepts EU warrant,” Washington Post (henceforth WP), Dec. 12, 2001, p. A30.
131“Italian Premier attacked for Islam comments,” Financial Times, Sept. 27, 2001, p. 3.

government has negotiated “Readmission Agreements” with a range of developing
countries. The agreements set out the quota of immigrants from these countries; give
priority of admission to individuals trained to fill economic needs in Italy; and
establish a database of those trained for those needs in Italy’s job market. The study
proposes a similar system for the European Union.132
The Bossi-Fini bill captures some of the elements of this discussion by requiring
that an applicant for a work visa in Italy have a job before his visa could be approved.
Part of the purpose of the bill is to establish a system that would admit only those on
their way to a job. Critics of the bill, including many prospective employers, say that
it sets the bar too high, and that employers prefer having a job applicant sitting in
front of them for an interview before offering a job; some employers say that the
existing system of giving an immigrant a job, and then a visa, is preferable because
it gives employers a wider pool of qualified individuals from whom to choose. The
bill would also require that non-EU residents be fingerprinted (including U.S.
citizens), provide for more border patrols, and make easier the deportation of illegal
Italy’s broader political record on immigration and tolerance is mixed. A spring
2002 EU study found few acts of violence against Muslim immigrants since
September 11, but cited a poll in which 43% of those responding found Islam
“intolerant.” The study indicated that Italian media may in part be responsible for the
public’s critical view of Islam. The study found that Italian media are inflaming
public opinion towards Muslims by bringing before their audiences “a
disproportionately high presence... of radical Muslim leaders who cannot be
considered representative of the Muslim community at the national level.” Prime
Minister Berlusconi, a media magnate, owns several of the television stations that
have featured such clerics. At the same time, the study complimented the Catholic
Church for urging toleration of, and education about, Islam.133
The Italian government supported the range of EU measures taken since
September 11 that tighten control and monitoring of visa applicants intended to
prevent “visa-shopping” in different EU countries and the movement of illegal aliens
across the borders of EU states.134 In addition, Italy and France have established a
joint border patrol, also aimed at reducing illegal immigration and interdicting drugs
and counterfeit money and documents.

132Stefano Ronca, “From emigration to immigration: What lessons learned from Italy?”
Wilton Park paper, Nov. 20, 2001. The author is a highly respected Italian diplomat.
133“Italy,” Anti-Islamic reactions in the EU after the terrorist acts against the USA,
European Monitoring Center on Racism and Xenophobia (an EU body), May 23, 2002. p.


134Incorporated as part of this report, for detail, see Kristin Archick (CRS consultant),
Europe and Counterterrorism: Strengthening Police and Judicial Cooperation, CRS
RL31509, p. 4-5, 10-11, 24.

Al Qaeda and Italy
Al Qaeda is active in Italy, primarily through cells that make and supply false
documentation to members of the Al Qaeda network. A focal point of activity has
been the Islamic Cultural Institute in Milan, where false passports, drivers’ licenses,
and other identification papers were manufactured.
Italian authorities, sometimes acting on information reportedly supplied by the
United States, may have thwarted several planned attacks by Al Qaeda. In February
2002, in Rome, they disrupted an apparent plot to put cyanide in the U.S. embassy’s
water supply. In the spring and summer of 2002, Italian authorities took measures
to enhance the security of the Vatican, a church in Venice, and the Jewish quarter in
Rome after receipt of information concerning possible attacks.
Italian authorities have also expressed concern that the country’s prison
population, 27% of which is Muslim, may become a breeding ground for recruitment
by Al Qaeda.135
Active Steps of Policy Implementation
Investigations and Arrests. Italian authorities have made a number of
arrests of terrorists evidently part of the Al Qaeda network. Essid Sami Ben
Khemais, a Tunisian thought by some to be Bin Laden’s logistics chief in Europe,
was arrested in April 2001. Ben Khemais spent two years in Afghanistan and
became a recruiter for Al Qaeda. Italian officials believe that he was planning an
attack on the U.S. embassy in Rome in January 2001. His cell appears to have been
planning to use poison gas in some of their attacks. An Italian court, using a fast-
track trial system, convicted Ben Khemais in February 2002 of arms smuggling and
preparation of false documents, and sentenced him to eight years in prison; he may
be charged with other crimes. Ben Khemais is believed to have been head of Al
Qaeda operations in Italy, and he worked out of that city’s Islamic Cultural
In April 2001, police wiretaps led to the arrest of twelve Tunisians, part of the
Algerian “Salafist” wing of Al Qaeda; they were reportedly planning to bomb a
French target. In February 2002, Italian police arrested nine Moroccans and charged
them with plotting to poison the U.S. embassy’s water supply; the men reportedly
had approximately 100 false work permits in their possession. During the spring and
summer of 2002, the police made other arrests in Milan, Rome, Bologna, and
Palermo of suspected members of Al Qaeda; authorities charged most of them with
the manufacture of false documents, and some of them with the manufacture of
explosives. The trials of most of these individuals are also on a fast-track status, and
in some instances have already begun or will begin in autumn 2002. As of June

135“Italian magistrates in USA for terrorism probe,” Italian News Agency (ANSA), June 18,


136U.S. Dept. of State, Patterns of Global Terrorism, May 2002, p. 36-38.

2002, the Italian government said that it was investigating approximately 500 people
for possible links to Al Qaeda.137
Three thousand men from the armed forces and civilian law enforcement
agencies have been assigned to protect sensitive infrastructure in the country.
The Italian government has worked with other governments to weaken terrorist
networks since the September 11 attacks. U.S. State Department officials and the
FBI are reportedly working closely with Italian police and intelligence authorities.
Press reports indicate that the Italian government has given the United States access
to wiretap information on Al Qaeda operatives. In December 2001 the two countries
reactivated an existing committee that coordinates the sharing of information on
criminal investigations, used often in the past for cases involving organized crime.
The United States and Italy have reportedly exchanged information gained by each
country’s interrogators of the Al Qaeda detainees in Guantanamo. The record of
cooperation, however, is less than ideal. The prosecutor in Milan contends that the
United States often presses him for information from investigations, but that
Washington is at times reluctant to share useful information with him.138
Money Laundering and Illegal Assets. Part of Italian-French law
enforcement cooperation has been in weakening money-laundering. In June 2002,
160 Italian and French police arrested 50 men who were part of a Russian organized
crime money-laundering ring. Rome has also made efforts to disrupt Al Qaeda’s
financial network.139 Using the UN list of individuals and organizations named as
supporting terrorist networks, the Italian government had seized approximately $4.2
million in property as of March 2002.140
The Italian government estimates that criminals laundered $50 billion in Italy
in 2001, equivalent to 4.2% of the country’s GDP. According to the U.S. State
Department, much of this money is washed by organized crime, and consists of
profits from narcotics and the smuggling of illegal aliens. The money is often
laundered through banks, real estate, casinos, the gold market, and non-state financial
institutions. In common with many countries, an impediment to Italy’s efforts to
combat money-laundering is a requirement that financial institutions, often lacking

137“A l’intérieur d’Al-Qaida,” Nouvel Observateur, April 29-Dec. 5, 2001, p. 4-12. This
article is an extensive printing of telephone conversations wiretapped by Italian police.
“Italy expands its probe for links to terrorists,” WP, June 20, 2002, p. A14; “U.S. experts
join Italians in investigating possible plot against embassy,” New York Times (henceforth
NYT), Feb. 26, 2002, p. A10.
138“Italian magistrates in USA for terror probe,” op. cit.; “FBI monitored militants in Italy
before 9/11,” WP, May 31, 2002; “Italy probing source of false documents,” WP, July 13,

2002, p. A14; and “Milan prosecutor seeks more cooperation from US,” NYT, Dec. 14,

2001, p. B6.

139“Arrestations en France et en Italie...,” Le Monde (henceforth LM), June 12, 2002, p. 4;
“Four Tunisians convicted of terror charges,” WP, Feb. 23, 2002, p. A16.
140Ministry of Foreign Affairs, “Report by Italy to the Sanctions Committee of the United
Nations Security Council,” undated doc. (but probably late spring 2002), Rome, p. 1-6.

in investigative resources, are expected to uncover the source of suspicious financial
t ransact i ons. 141
Illegal Immigration. The Bossi-Fini bill that passed the Italian Parliament in
June 2002 aroused considerable controversy. Elements of the center-left vigorously
opposed aspects of the bill, especially the stipulation for fingerprinting, as signaling
to immigrants that they were unwanted. Bossi contended that a rising crime rate was
due to immigration (In fact, Italy’s crime rate has been declining.). After September
11, Bossi increased his attacks on immigrants and underscored what he viewed as
immigration’s link to crime and terrorism. Some see the system of linking visas to
job offers as excessively rigid, especially given the many small specialty industries
in Italy that require highly skilled workers.142 The bill passed the Chamber of
Deputies, 279-203, in June 2002, and the Senate, 146-89, in July.
During the spring 2002 EU debate over how to stem illegal immigration from
the developing world, the Berlusconi government was a principal proponent of
cutting aid to countries that failed to reduce the flow of such immigrants. Several
other EU states blocked this position, and contended that such a policy, far from
curbing illegal immigration, might actually increase it by further weakening the
economies of targeted countries, given that aid is intended to build economic
development and reduce the incentive of inhabitants to leave their native country.
Broad Factors Affecting Italian Policy
The Berlusconi government has voiced strong support for the U.S. effort in
Afghanistan that overthrew the Taliban government and that has weakened Al Qaeda.
Italy sent military forces to the Afghan theater in fall 2001, and has forces in the
international security force in Kabul. Broader issues, however, affect Italy’s overall
policy towards terrorism.
Many Italian officials are uneasy with the Bush Administration’s tendency to
describe Israeli Prime Minister Sharon’s policy towards the Palestinians as an effort
to subdue terrorism. Over the past several years, Italian governments have provided
substantial financial aid to the Palestinian Authority. Several important city
governments in Italy have programs that assist Palestinian hospitals and schools. The
center-left as well as elements of the center-right are quietly critical of U.S. support
for Israel, which they view as detrimental to the Middle East peace process. They
believe Sharon’s settlements policy on the West Bank and the use of heavy military

141U.S. Dept. of State, “International Narcotics Control Strategy Report,” March 2002, p.
142“L’Italie veut les empreintes digitales de tous ses étrangers,” LM, May 31, 2002, p. 6; “En
Italie, la nouvelle loi sur l’immigration inquiète les PME,” LM, June 22, 2002, p. 3.
Identification cards for citizens are not required, but are issued to those who want them; new
versions include fingerprints as well as a retinal scan.

force in Palestinian cities are excessive, and unlikely to bring peace. In their view,
these policies exacerbate tensions and may promote further terrorism.143
Italian governments have not shared general U.S. policy on state-sponsored
terrorism. For several years, Italy has attempted to improve bilateral relations with
Iran. In June 2002, Italy supported an EU initiative to open formal trade and
cooperation negotiations with Iran without reference to discussion of Tehran’s human
rights record or support for terrorism. The EU will seek separate discussion and
agreements on counterterrorism with Iran.
Beyond these considerations, the Italian government has been reticent to voice
its support for possible military action by the Bush Administration against Iraq.
Across the political spectrum, there is a clear preference to exhaust political
measures, above all through the UN, to curb or halt Iraq’s WMD programs. Some
Italian political figures believe that the United States is using the attacks of
September 1l to garner support for foreign policy initiatives not directly tied to
terrorism. Italian leaders are likely to continue to place the conflict against terrorism
in a broad context that emphasizes social and economic as well as political and
military measures to resolve the tensions that contribute to terrorist movements.

143Interviews; “Les dirigeants européens soulignent les limites de l’action militaire,” LM,
Nov.6, 2001, p. 4.

In the wake of the September 11 attacks, Latvian officials expressed their
support for the war against terrorism. While Latvia is generally not viewed as a
target for terrorists, it has been eager to cooperate with the United States and other
countries in fighting terrorism, in part because its key foreign policy goal is
integration into NATO and the European Union, and in part because Latvians view
terrorism as an attack on Western values that they espouse. Latvians understand that
their prospects for joining Western institutions are heavily influenced by their144
participation in the fight against terror.
The Latvian government outlined an anti-terrorist Action Plan on October 16,

2001. One important focus of Latvia’s efforts is the fight against money laundering.

The 2001 State Department International Narcotics Control Strategy Report Money
said that “money laundering is a major concern in Latvia in spite of compliance with
legislative norms.” Latvia’s money laundering laws require the reporting of large
cash transactions and suspicious transactions to its money laundering agency.145 In
February 2002, Latvia amended its money laundering law to permit the seizure of
property directly or indirectly controlled by a person on the terrorist watch list. The
government drafted regulations requiring financial institutions to report any
transactions by persons on the watch list. So far, however, Latvian authorities have
uncovered no financial transaction between persons on the watch list and Latvian
financial institutions.146 The government is drafting legislation that makes terrorism
and any support for terrorist organizations a predicate criminal offence.
Since September 11, Latvia has strengthened monitoring of its borders,
including the improvement of its visa information system, especially with regard to
citizens of countries considered supporters of terrorism. Latvia is also strengthening
its export, import and transit control regime, including by increasing penalties for
violations and tightening licensing procedures. Six of the 12 major international
conventions against terrorism are already in force in Latvia. The International
Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism was signed by Latvia
in December 2001, and the government has started the legislative process of the147
ratification of five remaining international conventions on combating terrorism.
Latvia has developed joint anti-terrorist measures with its Baltic neighbors Lithuania
and Estonia, as well as with other Central and Eastern European countries.

144Discussions with U.S. and Latvian officials.
145U.S. State Department, International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, March 2002, p.
146“Latvia’s Activities in Fighting International Terrorism,” Latvian government fact sheet,
July 2002.
147Report of the Republic of Latvia on the Implementation of Security Council Resolution

1373, U.N. Security Council Document S/2002/9, January 2002.

*Prepared by Steven Woehrel, Specialist in European Affairs, Foreign Affairs, Defense, and
Trade Division, CRS. August 27, 2002.

Since the September 11 attacks, Lithuania has expressed its strong support for
the war against terror. Lithuania has not been known to harbor terrorists. There is
broad political support in Lithuania for the war on terrorism. Most Lithuanians view
terrorism as an attack on Western values, with which they identify. In addition,
Lithuania’s effective participation in the struggle is perceived as a key condition for
NATO and EU membership, a goal which has widespread public support. As with
other candidates for European Union membership, Lithuania’s key domestic task is
to align its laws and administration with EU standards, including in the fight against
terrorism and the security of its borders.148 In most cases, Lithuanians do not
perceive the resources used in the war on terror as particularly burdensome, given
the fact that they would likely be needed anyway for other preparations for EU and
NATO membership. Lithuania adopted a detailed national anti-terrorism program
in January 2002. It addresses the measures requiring a medium or long- term
answer over the next two years covering a range of legal, criminal, financial, and
intelligence issues.
The 2001 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report noted that “illegal
activities such as smuggling, narcotics-trafficking, capital flight, profit concealment,
and tax evasion make Lithuania vulnerable to money laundering. Russian organized
crime groups reportedly have used financial institutions in the Baltics to launder
money.” A 1998 law on money laundering required the reporting of suspicious
transactions and the identification of customers whose transactions exceeded
approximately $12,500 to banks.149 Lithuania plans to amend its money laundering
law to prevent terrorist financing. The Lithuanian government is improving its
financial surveillance system to uncover and track possible terrorist funds, including
by requiring more detailed reporting on assets by depositors and financial institutions
and improving links with other countries.
Lithuania is also taking other measures to fight terrorism. Lithuania is planning
to amend its criminal law to expand the concept of a terrorist act to include
biological, radioactive or chemical weapons. In addition, the law will also be
changed to criminalize not only terrorist acts, but also the establishment and
financing of a terrorist group, in line with international anti-terrorist conventions.
The national anti-terrorism program calls for efforts to strengthening border controls
and to clarify rules for refugee asylum. Lithuania is signatory to 8 of the 12
international conventions related to counter-terrorist activities and has ratified 7
of the eight signed. Efforts are underway to accede to the remaining four.150

148Discussions with Lithuanian and U.S. officials.
149U.S. State Department, International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, March 2002, p.
150Report of the Republic of Lithuania on the Implementation of Security Council Resolution

1373, U.N. Security Council Document S/2002/2, January 2002.

*Prepared by Steven Woehrel, Specialist in European Affairs, Foreign Affairs, Defense, and
Trade Division, CRS. August 28, 2002.

One U.S. government official has stated that within its means,151 Luxembourg
has sought to cooperate with the United States, especially on the money-laundering
issue. He noted that the large number of immigrants, who now constitute more than
a third of Luxembourg’s population, and the large number of people who commute
from neighboring countries (about one-fourth of the work force), complicate
Luxembourg’s ability to detect the presence of terrorists or terrorist activity.152
A Gallup poll taken in September showed that 74% of Luxembourgers
supported the use of their nation’s troops in a NATO military operation against
terrorism. On September 19, Luxembourg authorities announced that they had
requested banks to scan their records for accounts with possible ties to terrorist
groups, focusing particularly on a list of 180 names that had been provided by the
United States. Shortly thereafter, authorities prohibited banks from conducting
transactions with 27 groups and individuals suspected by the United States of having
terrorist connections.
In March, prior to a meeting with President Bush, Luxembourg Prime Minister
Jean-Claude Junker reiterated his country’s commitment to cooperate with the United
States in the war on terrorism, stating that “the international community has no right
to weaken its resolve.”153
Banking Secrecy and Money Laundering
Luxembourg's banking secrecy and tax practices attract enormous deposits from
foreigners (Luxembourg hosts more than 200 banks, employing 21,000 people). But
this flow of funds has also aroused controversy outside Luxembourg’s borders;
Belgium and Germany have charged that Luxembourg has become a tax haven. In
April 2000, Luxembourg opposed an OECD recommendation that European
countries share information on bank accounts. In February 2001, however, as a
tradeoff for maintaining its influence within the EU, Luxembourg agreed “in
principle” to relinquish its bank secrecy by 2010 – provided that countries such as
Switzerland followed suit. Some observers have also alleged that Luxembourg
serves as an international money-laundering center. The government adopted anti-
money-laundering legislation in 1989, but critics argue that its laws remain far too
lax. A recently released French parliamentary report was scathingly critical of
Luxembourg. It described the Grand Duchy as a “financial fortress at the heart of

151Luxembourg has a population of 450,000.
152CRS interview of U.S. government official. July 17, 2002.
153Luxembourg Offers A Hand Where It Can. By Noura Boustany. Washington Post.
March 6, 2002. p. A15.
*Prepared by Carl Ek, Specialist in International Relations, Foreign Affairs, Defense, and
Trade Division, CRS. July 26, 2002.

Europe” which “is one of the principal obstacles in the fight against judicial
wrongdoing and money laundering.”154 Luxembourg strongly rejected the report’s
The U.S. government does not appear to be as critical of Luxembourg’s banking
practices as the French. According to the U.S. State Department’s International
Narcotics Control Strategy Report, Luxembourg has strict banking secrecy laws, but
it can waive the rules on confidentiality in the case of suspected money laundering,
which is a criminal offense. A Financial Intelligence Unit tracks suspicious
transactions and reports to the prosecutor. An independent agency created in 1999,
the Commission for the Surveillance of the Financial Sector, is charged with
implementing the money laundering laws and establishing guidelines for the banking
sector, and auditing. The State Department report, dated March 2002, notes that
“[t]here have been no arrests or prosecutions for money laundering since January
2001.”155 It concludes that “[t]he government of Luxembourg has enacted laws and
adopted practices that help to prevent the abuse of bank secrecy laws. The presence
of bearer shares [stock certificates that are the property of whoever happens to be in
possession of them; no record of ownership is maintained by the issuing company]
is an area of risk that should be addressed and the government should continue to
strengthen enforcement to prevent international criminals from abusing
Luxembourg’s financial sector.”156
After the terrorist attacks on the United States, Luxembourg agreed to cooperate
in international efforts to trace and freeze funds of organizations that support
terrorists. In October 2001, however, Prime Minister Juncker, who is also
Luxembourg’s finance minister, criticized ongoing EU efforts to modify bank secrecy
laws, arguing that “confidential banking does not protect the terrorists and
criminals.”157 He also noted that funds belonging to groups associated with Osama
bin Laden had been found in countries that did not have such banking secrecy laws.
Shortly thereafter, the Luxembourg public prosecutor’s office announced that 6 bank
accounts had been frozen. In December, Luxembourger police raided a half-dozen
financial institutions that were to be investigated for having links to Al-Baraka, an
Islamic investment company. In April, however, courts ordered that the frozen

154Secret No More. The Economist. April 15, 2000. Luxembourg: Political Outlook.
Economist Intelligence Unit. February 1, 2001. French Report Slams Luxembourg on
“Dirty Money.” By Mark John. Reuters. January 22, 2002.
155 On July 8, the Swiss ambassador to Luxembourg was arrested in Bern on money-
laundering charges. He is reported to have deposited $750,000 in a bank account in
Luxembourg, whose money-laundering authorities notified the Swiss police. Arrested Swiss
Ambassador Withdraws Cooperation in $750,000 Money Laundering Case. AP. July 24,


156U.S. Department of State Publication 10926. May, 2002. “Money Laundering and
Financial Crimes.” p. XII-186.
157Luxembourg PM opposed to Clamps on Bank Secrecy. AFP. October 7, 2001.
Luxembourg Won’t Give Up Bank Secrecy Alone – PM. Reuters. October 7, 2001.

accounts be released, citing insufficient evidence.158 January 2002, U.S. Treasury
Secretary O’Neill praised Luxembourg, among a handful of countries, for its
cooperation in seizing assets of groups suspected of supporting terrorists.159 In
March, Luxembourg’s Justice Minster Luc Frieden stated that the government had
frozen 18 suspect accounts.

158Luxembourg Court Orders Unfreezing Of Suspected Terrorist Funds. AFP. April 25,


159U.S. Blocks Assets of Two Additional Islamic Charities. By Christopher Cooper and
Michael Phillips. Wall Street Journal. January 10, 2002.

Some Macedonian leaders have sought to portray their struggles with an ethnic
minority rebellion as part of and consistent with the global campaign against
terrorism. Macedonia is a small, landlocked country that is in the process of
overcoming a prolonged armed conflict between governmental (mainly Slavic)
security forces and rebel forces claiming to represent the country’s large ethnic
Albanian (secular Muslim) minority. The primary rebel force, the National
Liberation Army (NLA) - which included members of the Kosovo Liberation Army
(KLA) - conducted armed attacks against Macedonian government forces in 2000
and 2001, but agreed to disarm and formally dissolve on the basis of an
internationally-negotiated accord (the Ohrid agreement) from August 2001. The
Macedonian government claimed that the rebels were terrorists who had infiltrated
the country from abroad, mainly Kosovo. The Ohrid agreement successfully
forestalled a full-scale civil war. The international community and Macedonia’s
parties have since focused mainly on implementing the terms of the agreement to
resolve inter-ethnic tensions, which continue to threaten to erupt.
After the September 11 terrorist attacks on the United States, the Macedonian
government expressed full support for U.S. - led efforts to counter global terrorism.
Prime Minister Georgievski, who is considered to be a hardliner, claimed that both
the United States and Macedonia were victims of terrorism. News reports from
Macedonia and neighboring states have repeatedly attempted to draw links between
ethnic Albanian rebels and Osama bin Laden, while former leaders of rebel group
vehemently deny such connections. U.S. officials reportedly dismiss these and other
allegations of a bin Laden presence in Macedonia. They have urged Skopje not to
exploit the terrorism issue but to focus instead on implementing the Ohrid accords.160
In early March 2002, Macedonian police ambushed and shot seven foreign men.
The Interior Ministry claimed that they were Islamic terrorists plotting attacks on
western embassies in Skopje, and carrying weapons and uniforms of the ethnic
Albanian guerrillas. However, U.S. and other international representatives publicly
rejected the official explanation of the killings and denied that there was any specific
threats to an embassy in Macedonia. Subsequent news stories have suggested that
the victims were merely illegal Muslim migrants in transit through Macedonia.
While many details of the incident remain unclear, some reports speculate that the
attack was part of an effort by the government to manufacture an extremist threat tied
to the ethnic Albanian minority in Macedonia, and thereby justify renewed hostilities
against ethnic Albanian rebel forces.161 Macedonian authorities also made the claim,
which they later retracted, that they had transferred to the U.S. embassy two
Jordanian and two Bosnian terrorist suspects.

160See “Bin Laden and the Balkans: the Politics of Anti-Terrorism,” International Crisis
Group Balkans Report No. 119, November 9, 2001.
161The Wall Street Journal, May 28, 2002; March 8, 2002.
*Prepared by Julie Kim, Specialist in International Relations, Foreign Affairs, Defense, and
Trade Division, CRS. July 25, 2002.

Macedonia remains an intensely poor country with extremely limited resources.
In its December 2001 report to the United Nations, the Macedonian government
stated that it has intensified controls over persons and organizations with links to
international terrorist organizations. It is preparing a special law against terrorism
as well as amendments to the penal code and other crime-related legislation. The
government is intensifying controls of border crossings and airports. As part of its
military reforms, the Ministry of Defense is working on the development of special
anti-terrorist units with technical assistance and training from the United States and
other NATO countries. Special paramilitary units, reporting to hardline political
party leaders rather than to government ministers, claim (without evidence) to be
working to combat terrorism but have also incited violent incidents leading to the
death of numerous civilians over the past year.

The Netherlands*
A U.S. government official commented that, although the Dutch government’s
political will to cooperate is “reasonably high,” Holland has been quite upset by the
U.S. rejection of the International Criminal Court, which will be headquartered in
The Hague, and by the U.S. Senate’s passage of the American Servicemembers’
Protection Act.162 The Dutch, according to the official, may be somewhat naive on
the terrorism issue – there have been no major terrorist incidents since 1977, when
Moluccans seized hostages on a train – and they may feel themselves to be safe from
such threats. He added that, because of the openness of Dutch society and because
nearly 10% of the population is foreign-born, the government did not monitor the
immigrant population to any great degree before September 11. The Economist
reported that Holland “dragged its feet over the invocation of NATO’s Article 5 after
September 11th. It is still suspicious of American military adventurism abroad.”163
In mid-April 2002, the government of Wim Kok, who had served for 8 years as
Prime Minister, stepped down. During the campaign for the May 15 parliamentary
elections, Holland was stunned when populist leader Pim Fortuyn was gunned down
by a left-wing extremist; Fortuyn gained a great deal of attention – and support – by
criticizing the country’s liberal immigration policies. A coalition of conservative
parties – including the eponymous Pim Fortuyn’s List party – will form the new
government. Spokespersons for the coalition recently announced that the new
government will introduce legislation that, among other things, will restrict
immigration.164 A U.S. government official suggested that the new, rightward-
leaning government may lead to even closer cooperation with the United States.
According to a Dutch government official, however, it is highly unlikely that the
Netherlands would extradite persons who might face the death penalty in another
Response to 9/11
Former Dutch Prime Minister Wim Kok reacted swiftly to the attacks of
September 11, calling for an international fight against terrorism, and declaring that
the United States could “count on the full support of the Dutch government ... there

162See also: Dutch Urge US To End International Court Boycott. By Paul Gallagher.
Reuters. December 19, 2001. And: U.S. Seeks To Ease Dutch Fears Over Court.
Washington Post. June 13, 2002.
163A Survey of the Netherlands. Economist. May 4, 2002. p. 17.
164Dutch Prepare Limits on Immigrants, Drugs. By Keith B. Richburg. Washington Post.
July 11, 2002. p. A15.
*Prepared by Carl Ek, Specialist in International Relations, Foreign Affairs, Defense, and
Trade Division, CRS. October 17, 2002.

should be no doubt about where the Netherlands stands.”165 Gerrit Zalm, Holland’s
Finance Minister, argued that a military response would not endanger the world
economy. On September 17, Dutch government authorities met with officials from
neighboring countries to discuss immediate counter-terrorism measures.
In the latter half of September, several Dutch Muslims were assaulted or
harassed, and there were numerous attacks on mosques in the Netherlands; Premier
Kok met with Islamic leaders and denounced the incidents. Some attributed the
vandalism to television footage of young Muslims in Holland celebrating the
destruction of the World Trade Center.166 On September 30, a crowd estimated at
6,000, organized by pacifist groups, demonstrated against the prospect of military
action against Afghanistan.
Dutch Counterterrorism Initiatives
On October 3, the government froze the assets of two people suspected of
terrorist links. By the end of September, the Netherlands, along with several other
countries, had detained nearly two dozen people suspected of belonging to terrorist
networks; Dutch police continued to arrest several more people in the ensuing
months.167 The Dutch Internal Security Agency reported in May 2002 that stepped-
up investigations had uncovered suspected terrorist cells in the Netherlands, along
with evidence that extremist groups had been actively recruiting within the country’s
large (5% of the population) Islamic community.168 In late June, Canada complied
with a Dutch extradition request for an Algerian man who was wanted in Holland for
plotting with others to bomb the U.S. embassy in Paris. In response to EU
guidelines, the Justice Ministry in June unveiled legislation to permit longer prison
sentences for terrorist crimes. The government also has announced plans to develop
a national register of bank accounts to combat schemes to finance terrorist
The government also increased spending on anti-terrorism measures by more
than $60 million; the funds were designated for a financial task force, and for
technology for immigration officials. In late October, Amsterdam’s Schiphol airport
launched a pilot program of using iris scanning devices to screen travelers. In
addition, Dutch flight schools passed on to the government suspicious inquiries that
they had received.

165Netherlands Vows Backing for U.S. Reuters. September 17, 2002.
166On September 28, 2001, Reuters reported that “polls suggest as many as 10 percent of
Muslims in the Netherlands sympathized with the attackers in the United States.”
167Intelligence Agencies Piece Together Terrorists’ European Connection. By Hugh
Scofield. AFP. September 27, 2002. Dutch Police Find bin Laden Tapes. By Marcel van
de Hoef. AP Online. December 17, 2001. Dutch Police Seize Suspected Algerian
Militants. Reuters. April 24, 2002. Dutch Detain Alleged Terrorist. AP Online. June 12,


168Militants Recruiting Young Dutch Muslims For Foreign War. By Marlise Simons. New
York Times. May 31, 2002.

In June 2002, the U.S. and Dutch governments initialed an agreement that will
permit U.S. Customs agents to be stationed in Rotterdam – the world’s largest
seaport – where they will work with Dutch officials to screen freight containers to be
loaded on vessels bound for the United States. The accord is part of the Bush
Administration’s Container Security Initiative, under which foreign ports will be
checked to prevent shipment to the United States of weapons of mass destruction.169
In response to a U.S. request, the Dutch government in August froze the assets
of (and cut off welfare payments to) Jose Maria Sison, founder of the Communist
Party of the Philippines, who had been living in exile in Utrecht. And in a five-city
sweep in September, Dutch police arrested 7 men suspected of assisting Al Qaeda.

169U.S. Tightens Scrutiny Of Sea Cargo, Will Station Inspectors In Rotterdam. By Gary
Fields. Wall Street Journal. June 25, 2002. Le Havre Joins U.S. Customs Anti-Terror
Security Initiative. Washington File. U.S. Department of State Information Programs. July

1, 2002.

Romania demonstrated enormous sympathy and solidarity with the United
States after the terrorist attacks; September 14 was declared a day of national
mourning. According to a U.S. government official, the political will of the
Romanian government is strong and genuine; he characterized its policy as “entirely
forward-leaning,” and added that the government is very serious about cooperation
in the war on terrorism and regards it as a long-term commitment. The vocal backing
of the United States was not confined to the government; the country’s media also
have been supportive.170 On September 24, the Bucharest daily Evenimentul Zilei
published an “Ode to America;” the editorial was translated and published in many
newspapers in the United States.
The keystone of Romania’s foreign policy is its steadfast pursuit of an invitation
to join NATO delivered at the alliance’s Prague Summit in November 2002. The
Romanians understand that the United States will play the key role in determining
which of the 9 aspirant countries will be asked to join. Some analysts believe that
Romania’s post-9/11 cooperation was likely undertaken with an eye toward
impressing the United States, thereby likely boosting its prospects at the Prague
summit. Government officials made no secret of their belief that cooperation in the
war on terrorism would improve chances of joining the alliance. President Ion Iliescu
declared that Romania would act as a de facto NATO ally. Romania has sought out
opportunities to cooperate with the United States in the war on terrorism, and has not
hesitated to publicize its role.171 Romania also has used the war on terrorism to argue
its case for NATO membership, maintaining that its location in southeastern Europe
is strategically important for the war on terrorism and that the more members NATO
has, the more effective it will be in fighting terrorism. Nevertheless, a good deal of
Romania’s cooperation may be ascribed to its genuine friendliness toward the United
With the exception of the extremist-nationalist opposition party, the appearance
of political will among elected leaders has been high. Politicians who have attempted
to thwart the efforts to cooperate in the conflict, or to sully the national image, have
been ostracized or rebuked. In September 2001, extremist-nationalist Senator
Corneliu Vadim Tudor, leader of the opposition Greater Romania Party, alleged that
members of Hamas had been trained in Romania. The Romanian senate voted to lift

170Romania Reasserts Support For U.S. and NATO In Fight Against Terrorism – Press.
Rompres. October 9, 2001.
171Romania's Prime Minister: Support Of War Against Terror Helps NATO Bid. AP. March

22, 2002. Romania To Act As De Facto NATO Member In Terrorism Fight. Dow Jones.

October 8, 2001. Since 9/11, Rompres, the official government news agency, has issued
scores of press releases detailing the country’s cooperation with the United States. Romania
has even issued a postage stamp honoring the victims of 9/11.
*Prepared by Carl Ek, Specialist in International Relations, Foreign Affairs, Defense, and
Trade Division, CRS. October 17, 2002.

Tudor’s parliamentary immunity. He is to be tried by the supreme court for
spreading untrue information.
Corruption, pervasive in both public and private sectors, is one of Romania’s
most serious problems, and some analysts argue that the country’s widespread graft
likely makes it a fertile ground for money-laundering. In November 2001, Agence
France Presse, quoting a leaked Romanian government report published the previous
March, wrote that “more than 800 million euros were money-laundered in Romania
last year. Some 650 people including 240 foreigners, mostly of Arabic or Turkish
origin, were implicated in the operations. Romanian prosecutors have launched
investigations into 140 out of 350 ‘shady’ bank transfers reported in 2000.”172 The
U.S. State Department’s International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, while red-
flagging several problem areas, concluded that “Romania should continue ... to
further improve its anti-money laundering regime and continue its progress on money
laundering investigations and prosecutions.”173 Critics have also argued that the
culture of corruption could also extend to border guards, thereby permitting illegal
entry and transit of the country. In June 2002, however, the U.S. State Department
commended Romania for its progress in preventing human trafficking.174
Some observers’ reservations about Romania’s contributions to the war on
terrorism are grounded in the country’s recent past. Romania was a virtual police
state under Nicolae CeauÕescu, the Stalinist dictator who ruled the country from 1965
until his death before a firing squad in 1989. During CeauÕescu’s reign, Romania
provided sanctuary for Ilich Ramirez Sanchez, also known as Carlos the Jackal, the
Venezuelan who carried out several deadly terrorist attacks in the 1970s. Romania
still has more than a half-dozen different intelligence services; observers point out
that these agencies are still staffed by former members of CeauÕescu’s infamous
Securitate. 175
Another, somewhat more indirect reservation about Romania, according to some
analysts, is that there frequently tends to be a disconnect between announced
intentions and actual deeds – that is, between what the government says that it is
planning to do, and what it actually accomplishes. To cite just one example: over
the past decade, Romania has struck six standby loan agreements with the
International Monetary Fund, but has failed in all cases to fulfill the conditions of the
accords. Notwithstanding these concerns, Romania’s military contributions to the
war on terrorism have been extensive and, for Romania, expensive, and have
matched its verbal commitments. According to a U.S. government official, the
Romanians regard this cooperation as their trump card for joining NATO.

172Terror Funds Transferred From Romania: Report. AFP. November 8, 2001.
173U.S. Department of State Publication 10926. May, 2002. p. XII-186.
174U.S. State Department Report Praises Romanian Efforts To Combat Human Trafficking.
RFE/RL Newsline. Vol. 6, No. 106, Part II. June 7, 2002.
175Among NATO Applicants, Romania Draws Particular Scrutiny–Its Communist Police
State Was Especially Ruthless; Can Bucharest Be Trusted? By Phillip Shiskin. Wall Street
Journal. May 3, 2002. p. A9.

The U.S. embassies in Romania and Bulgaria were closed on August 31, 2001
in response to reports of possible terrorist attacks. A U.S. government official said
the threats did not appear to be related to the Middle East or to Osama bin Laden.
Romanian intelligence agencies reportedly dispatched “dozens” of agents to the
embassy area.176 The U.S. mission in Sofia reopened the following day, but the
embassy in Bucharest remained closed a few days. A U.S. official said that the
Romanian government had increased the number of police and anti-terrorism
personnel around all U.S. posts.
Romanian Counterterrorism Initiatives
Following the attacks of 9/11, there was a flurry of government anti-terrorist
activity. For example, Bucharest launched an immediate investigation into whether
any elements of Al Qaeda might be present in Romania – in a 1996 interview for a
British newspaper, Osama bin Laden had identified Romania as one of 13 countries
in which his confederates were organized. Over the past 10 months, Romania
appears to have participated actively in the war on terrorism, and actions taken by the
government in support of the United States are almost too numerous to list. Some
highlights include:
!Four days after the attacks, the Romanian Supreme Defense Council,
at the request of NATO, opened the country’s air, land and sea
territory to the alliance, and said it also would permit aircraft basing
rights and the use of its seaports.
!On September 19, the government announced that it would step up
border security to avert the delivery of weapons or the illegal transit
of people. It also ordered that security agents accompany flights of
Tarom, the national airline, destined for selected locations in Europe
and the Middle East (there are many Romanian guest workers in
!In October, Romania requested the removal of a staff member of the
Iraqi embassy; according to a Romanian government spokesperson,
the diplomat was asked to leave based on information gathered
through the collaboration of Romanian and foreign intelligence
!In October, the government issued an emergency ordinance under
which convicted terrorists could face up to 30 years’ imprisonment.177

176U.S. Embassies in Bulgaria and Romania Close Amid Threats. By Norman Kempster.
Los Angeles Times. August 31, 2001. p. A-3.
177A U.S. government official noted that some of Romania’s legislative changes have
occurred through such emergency ordinances – essentially government decrees, which are
as legally binding as laws that have been voted by parliament. The government claims that
this method permits greater responsiveness and efficiency, but some observers are concerned
that it bypasses the normal legislative process.

!In November, the government announced that the Romanian
Intelligence Service and the Foreign Intelligence Service (SRI) would
be reorganized to permit them to focus more on terrorism and on
cooperation with foreign intelligence agencies. The SRI director
announced that 70 persons suspected of having links to terrorists had
been deported from Romania in 2002.
!Romania announced in late November that it would intensify cross-
border anti-terrorism cooperation with Bulgaria. Over the ensuing
months, the government also moved to conclude and ratify counter-
terrorism agreements with Austria, Albania, Slovakia, and Poland.
!The government has stressed the need to tackle organized crime,
which, Romanian Foreign Minister Mircea Geoana asserted in
December 2001, is a major source of funding for terrorists. Romania
has emphasized the importance of the work of the 11-nation
Southeast European Cooperative Initiative’s (SECI) Center for
Combating Trans-border Crime, which is headquartered in Bucharest.
After September 11, the Center added a terrorism task force.178
!In December, the government approved an emergency ordinance that
requires several government agencies to supply the Finance Ministry
with lists of persons suspected of having links to terrorism. In
addition, a U.S. government official noted that Romania’s Central
Bank is working to ensure that there are no linkages between
Romanian banks and terrorists.
!Over the past 10 months, Romanian officials participated in
numerous international fora on combating terrorism. In December,
for example, Romania hosted an OSCE Ministerial Council meeting
that adopted a counter-terrorism action plan. In May, a conference on
intelligence services in Southeast Europe was held in Bucharest.
!The government announced that it would increase security for nuclear
power plants, and has been developing plans to counter possible
sabotage at facilities that use radioactive materials.179

178Balkans Crime Unit Put To Test – Expands From Smugglers To Terrorists. Anthony M.
DeStefano. Newsday. October 11, 2001. p. A30.
179Romania To Boost Nuclear Plant Safety. AFP. September 26, 2001. Romania Takes
Measures To Thwart Nuclear Terrorism. Rompres. May 20, 2002.

The Slovak government has been eager to demonstrate its commitment to
contribute to the global anti-terrorist effort. Slovakia is currently a leading candidate
for entry into NATO and the European Union and awaits critical decisions by these
institutions on enlargement in the coming months. After September 11, the Slovak
government opened Slovak airspace for U.S. and NATO forces, supported NATO’s
invocation of Article V of the NATO treaty, and supported EU and regional
initiatives to counter terrorism. At the same time, a porous eastern border has
allowed the illegal transit of goods and persons into Slovakia and western Europe.
Internally, the Interior and Defense Ministries established counter-terrorism
units within their ministries to focus on the terrorist threat and preventive measures.
In April 2002, the government approved a draft amendment to the penal code.
Among other things, it adds terrorism and assistance to terrorist groups to the
categories of criminal offenses. The government also issued a decree to enable the
freezing of financial and other assets of individuals and groups identified by the U.N.
Security Council. In July, the government introduced amendments to the export
control act to improve controls over arms exports. Slovakia has signed all
international conventions on counter-terrorism, and is expected shortly to ratify the
international Convention for the Suppression of Terrorist Financing. Slovakia has
also signed other UN Conventions relating to transnational organized crime and
illegal trafficking.
In recent months, international media reports have cited growing concerns about
suspected Islamic terrorists infiltrating western Europe by posing as refugees and
taking advantage of lax border security and open refugee processing in eastern
European countries, including Slovakia. An estimated 1,250 undocumented persons
a month cross Slovakia’s eastern border with Ukraine en route to western Europe.
Slovak authorities have reportedly stopped around 8,000 refugees from Afghanistan
in the past year and a half. The large numbers of migrants, coupled with the small
number of poorly equipped and often corrupt border guards, impede the authorities’
ability to check for and detain possible terrorists among them.180 The Slovak
government has given priority to upgrading border controls with neighboring
Once inside Slovakia, migrants who request asylum are transferred to asylum
processing centers located in the western part of the country. However, asylum-
seekers are not guarded or forcibly detained, and are often able to disappear from
further controls. The Slovak government is considering new measures to detain
asylum-seekers in Slovakia until their identity is verified.181

180The Asian Wall Street Journal, July 8, 2002.
181Czech News Agency (CTK), July 26, 2002.
*Prepared by Julie Kim, Specialist in International Relations, Foreign Affairs, Defense, and
Trade Division, CRS. July 29, 2002

A recent case illustrates some of the challenges involved in responding to this
problem. In March, Slovak authorities received notice that a group of 30 suspected
Al Qaeda and Taliban members had crossed into the country from the east and
requested asylum. Information from Interpol reported that the group had paid large
sums of money to a human smuggling ring for entry into Slovakia. Slovak police
raided several refugee camps near the town of Adamov, but turned up only one
suspect, who was detained. Slovak authorities requested assistance from the FBI and
other international agencies, but received no evidence linking the Afghan migrant to
terrorism, and they eventually released him for lack of evidence.

Slovenia has strongly condemned terrorism in the wake of the September 11
attacks. There is broad consensus among political leaders and the general public in
Slovenia on supporting the war against terrorism. This is partly due to the fact that
they generally see the war on terrorism as an integral part of their widely-shared
foreign policy goal, membership in NATO and the European Union. Long before
the September 11 attacks, Slovene leaders accepted the need to adapt their domestic
laws and institutions to EU standards in all areas, including civil liberties and the
fight against terrorism. This sentiment has practical as well as political dimensions.
For example, in order to be ready for EU membership, Slovenia has been raising the
security at its borders to EU standards. It has also increased cooperation with
neighboring countries. These actions could of course also contribute to Slovenia’s
capacity to fight terrorism. Conversely, a minority of Slovene politicians have
raised questions about supporting the war on terrorism, suggesting that it really isn’t
Slovenia’s fight, and have been those most vociferously opposed to EU and NATO
However, it should be noted that support for the war on terrorism transcends the
issue of Slovenia’s membership in NATO and the EU. While public support for
NATO and EU membership has been somewhat tepid at times, Slovenes have shown
little dissent against the war on terrorism because many see terrorism as a threat to
Western values that their country espouses. Some Slovene journalists have
questioned alleged U.S. unilateralism on issues such as policy toward Israel and Iraq,
but U.S. officials say that this has not had an impact on Slovenia’s cooperation with182
the war on terror.
One focus of Slovenia’s national anti-terrorist action plan has been suppressing
the financing of terrorism. According to the State Department’s 2001 International
Narcotics Control Strategy Report, “Slovenia’s economic stability and location on
the Balkan drug route offer attractive opportunities for money laundering.” A 1994
law criminalized money laundering and required all financial institutions to report
suspicious transactions and currency transactions above $22,000. Slovenia’s
parliament passed a new Money Laundering Act in October 2001 which expanded
the sources of financial information available to Slovenia’s Office for Money
Laundering Prevention (OMLP) and extended its ability to halt suspect
transactions.183 Slovenia believes its legislation is in compliance with
recommendations of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) and the EU Council
directive on money laundering. The Slovenian government also plans to amend its
penal code to specifically criminalize the financing of terrorism. The Slovenian
government has so far uncovered no cases of the financing of terrorist activities in

182Discussions with U.S. and Slovenian officials.
183U.S. State Department, International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, March 2002, p.
*Prepared by Steven Woehrel, Specialist in European Affairs, Foreign Affairs, Defense, and
Trade Division, CRS. August 27, 2002.

Slovenia. The OMLP is starting a bilateral project of establishing a system for
money laundering prevention in Montenegro.
Slovenia’s police have applied stricter border controls and more stringent
verification of visa applicants from countries that have harbored terrorists, but have
uncovered no cases of terrorists among legal or illegal immigrants to Slovenia so far.
Slovenia has increased its cooperation with INTERPOL and EUROPOL, as well as
bilaterally with EU member states and the United States. Slovenia is a party to eight
out of twelve international anti-terrorist conventions. It has signed and plans to ratify
two others: the International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of
Terrorism and International Convention for the Suppression of Terrorist Bombings.
Slovenia plans to sign the remaining two the Convention for the Suppression of
Unlawful Acts against the Safety of Maritime Navigation, and Protocol for the
Suppression of Unlawful Acts against the Safety of Fixed Platforms Located on the
Continental Shelf.184

184Slovenian Action Plan in the Fight Against Terrorism, memorandum supplied by
Slovenian Embassy, August 2002, and Report of the Republic of Slovenia on the
Implementation of Security Council Resolution 1373, U.N. Security Council Document
S/2001/1277, January 2002.

Spain has been one of the strongest supporters in Europe of the fight against
terrorism. However, prior to the September 11 attacks, Spain’s emphasis on fighting
combating a domestic terror threat may have adversely affected its effort to fight Al
Qaeda, according to some Spanish observers.185 Since 1968, the ETA terrorist group
has killed over 800 people in its struggle to secure an independent Basque state in
northern Spain. Spanish Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar has taken a hard line with
ETA, flatly refusing to negotiate with them. The Spanish government has made use
of a new anti-terrorism law, passed in June 2002, to seek a ban on Batasuna, widely
believed to be the political wing of the ETA. The law provides for the Spanish
Supreme Court to ban the party, if the Spanish parliament makes the request. On
August 26, 2002, Batasuna was suspended for three years by order of Judge Baltazar
Garzon. Because of its decades-long battle against ETA, many Spaniards may be
more likely to give priority to security issues over possible civil liberties concerns.
However, there is not a consensus on the issue. Even the most moderate Basque186
parties have vigorously condemned the effort to ban Batasuna. Spain possesses
strong national police forces and the paramilitary Civil Guard, a legacy of the Franco
During its EU Presidency from January to June 2002, Spain succeeded in
forging agreement among EU members on new rules that would permit judges to
freeze the assets of suspected terrorists and other criminals across the EU. Madrid
made good progress on a proposal to give Europol–the EU’s fledgling joint police
body–a more assertive law enforcement role, and a plan to combat illegal
immigration and strengthen external border controls.187 Madrid sought to extend EU
efforts to improve coordination among member states’ intelligence services.
Spain, EU and Immigration
The battle to stem illegal immigration has been a long-standing priority of
Spanish policy, one which has implications for the battle against terror. Each year,
thousands of illegal immigrants attempt to reach Spanish shores, mainly from
Morocco. Spain’s Muslim population has surged from about 30,000 of a total
population of 40 million in the mid-1980s to over 500,000 today.188 Spanish officials
have pressed Morocco to stop the flow of migrants. Spain advocated a common EU
policy to restrict immigration. It pushed for EU sanctions against countries that refuse

185Sam Dillon and Emily Daily, “Spain Pursues Terrorists Among its Muslim Immigrants,”
New York Times, December 3, 2001.
186Leslie Crawford, “Divided by Violence,” Financial Times, August 25-26, 2002, pg. 4.
187Under this proposal, Europol would acquire the authority to request national police
authorities to launch specific criminal investigations and to participate in eventual joint
investigation teams.
188 “Spain Pursues Terrorists Among its Muslim Immigrants,” New York Times, December

3, 2001.

*Prepared by Steven Woehrel, Specialist in European Affairs, Foreign Affairs, Defense and
Trade Division, CRS. August 27, 2002.

to stop illegal immigration from their countries. However, the proposal was blocked
at the June 2002 EU summit by France and Sweden, which feared that the move
could destabilize target countries, making the problem worse rather than better.189
Spain is also seeking to improve its domestic response to illegal immigration.
Spain is erecting an electronic barrier on its southern coast, composed of radar, infra-
red detectors and video cameras to stem the tide of human and drug trafficking on its
shores. When the system is completed in 2004, it will be able detect small boats six
miles from its coasts.190 The Spanish government has moved to tighten an already
strict domestic immigration law that was adopted two years ago. The changes would
make it harder for those without proper documentation to legalize their status, limit
immigration to reunite families, and increase punishments for human traffickers and
those who employ illegal aliens. Efforts to restrict immigration have generally been
popular in Spain, but the Spanish Conference of Bishops criticized the proposed
changes as a “reduction of the rights of immigrants.”191
While Spain’s position on immigration pre-dates the September 11 attacks, it
also has consequences for the fight against terrorism. Many in Spain were disturbed
by the use of Spanish territory by those planning the September 11 attacks.
Increasing Spanish surveillance of its coasts and scrutiny of foreigners on its territory
could hinder the freedom of movement of suspected terrorists.
Spain and Al Qaeda
U.S. officials have praised Spain’s efforts to fight Al Qaeda since the
September 11 attacks. During Prime Minister Aznar’s November 2001 visit to the
United States, President Bush said Madrid has been “incredibly helpful” in the fight
against terror. Evidence uncovered by Spanish authorities has established that Spain
was one of Al Qaeda’s main bases for planning attacks and securing funds for them.
The leader of the September 11 attack, Mohammed Atta, held a “summit” in Spain
in early July 2001 with Ramzi Binalshibh, who Spanish authorities believe to be the
main coordinator of the September 11 attacks. Also attending the talks were
Marwan Al-Shehi, another September 11 pilot and Said Bahaji, a key Al Qaeda
operative. So far, Spanish authorities have traced about $200,000 in Al Qaeda
money transfers through a network of businesses that financed terrorist operations.
U.S. officials believe Al Qaeda may have viewed Spain as an “operational safe zone”
and held more than a dozen meetings in Spain in the five years before the attack.
Spain’s status as a favored base for Al Qaeda may be in part due to the cover
provided by its large population of Muslims from North Africa, and proximity to
France. The overwhelming majority of Al Qaeda cells in Europe were reportedly
formed in the early 1990s by extremists from North Africa, particularly from

189Irish Times, June 24, 2002, 7.
190DPA news dispatch, August 23, 2002.
191“Jose Maria Aznar veut ‘blinder’ la porte sud qu’est l’Espagne,” Le Monde, June 14,

2002, 5.

Algeria. These groups carried out attacks in France in the mid-1990s, and began to
use Spain as a logistical base at that time.192
Anti-Terror Policy: Implementation
Like its EU partners, Spain pledged its full coordination with the United States
in the struggle against terrorism. Spain views closer U.S.-EU cooperation in the law
enforcement and judicial sphere as essential to help prevent future terrorist acts. In
October 2001, Spain and France agreed on measures to ease the extradition of ETA
suspects between the two countries and to bolster anti-terrorist cooperation.193 The
Spanish Presidency was a driving force behind EU efforts to open negotiations with
the United States on a judicial cooperation agreement that would address extradition
and mutual legal assistance issues. Madrid is adamant, however, that any eventual
judicial cooperation accord with the United States respect the EU’s opposition to the
death penalty. Spanish officials have also expressed concerns about the U.S. plan to
possibly try some detainees by military tribunals and not civilian courts.
In its March 2002 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, the State
Department said that Spain “remains committed to combat drug trafficking,
terrorism and financial crimes.” Spain adopted an anti-money laundering law in

1993. It covers laundering linked to illegal drugs, terrorism, and organized crime.

The law requires banks and other financial institutions to identify customers, keep
records of transactions, and report suspicious financial transactions. The law also
created the Commission for the Prevention of Money Laundering and Monetary
Offenses to coordinate the government’s anti-money laundering efforts, as well as
regulate and train financial institutions.194
Since September 11, Spain has arrested and is holding 24 persons suspected of
having links to Al Qaeda. A report of about 700 pages recently provided to the FBI
by Spanish police reportedly provides a very detailed account of the September 11
conspirators activities on Spanish soil. Spanish and U.S. officials have worked
closely in Spain to develop leads in the investigation, and the FBI has increased its
presence in Spain in recent weeks.195 A protocol to the U.S.-Spain defense
cooperation agreement, signed in April 2002, calls for increased intelligence
cooperation between the two countries. In addition to the fight against Al Qaeda,
Spain has been interested in increased access to U.S. communications intercepts and
other intelligence on ETA. Public opinion in Spain has generally been skeptical of
U.S. support for Israel in the current conflict in the West Bank and Gaza, as well as

192Brian Whitmore, “Fighting Terror: The Investigation,” Boston Globe, August 4, 2002.
193U.S. State Department, Patterns of Global Terrorism 2001, May 2002, p.41.
194U.S. State Department, International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, March 2002, p.
195Jerome Socolovsky, “Clues of 9/11 Plans Found in Spain,” Associated Press, August 10,


on U.S. policy toward Iraq. However, U.S. officials have not noticed a decline in
Spain’s cooperation with United States as a result of these concerns.196

196Discussions with U.S. officials.

Response to 9/11
The September 11 attacks prompted an outpouring of sympathy and concern in
Sweden for the United States, and, according to a U.S. government official, there has
been no significant shift in public attitudes; perhaps most telling is the fact that the
largest anti-U.S. protest occurred the weekend before the military campaign in
Afghanistan began. In general, the official said, the silent majority of Swedes
understand the U.S. response, and approve of the deliberate manner in which it was
U.S. government officials indicate that Sweden’s political will to cooperate with
the United States is high. Sweden’s Social Democratic Prime Minister, Göran
Persson, was unexpectedly vocal on this issue; on September 12, he characterized the
actions of the hijackers as an attack on democratic values, and later emphasized the
appropriateness of the U.S. military actions. Foreign Minister Anna Lindh, regarded
as somewhat to the political left of Persson, has been on-message consistently on the
counter-terrorism issue, according to a U.S. government official. When questioned
about a possible U.S. military response, she replied that “[i]t goes without saying that
[the U.S. government] must have the right to protect the American people .. from a
repeat of this.”197 In April 2002, Lindh met with U.S. Treasury Secretary O’Neill to
discuss methods to thwart the fundraising activities of organizations linked to
terrorists. After 9/11, the Swedish parliament fast-tracked the ratification of the
International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism; it went
into effect on July 6, 2002.
In addition to political and diplomatic support, the Swedish government offered
to share intelligence with the United States, and is participating in the International
Security Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan.198 This cooperation is especially noteworthy
given the country’s traditional security posture. Sweden maintained a policy of
military neutrality from the time of the Napoleonic wars until nearly the end of the
20th century. Since the dissolution of the Soviet Union, however, Sweden has been
reevaluating and revising its defense posture. In 1992, a Conservative-led parliament
jettisoned the term "neutrality" and redefined the country's foreign policy posture as
one of alliansfrihet, or non-alignment, a formulation that reserved the right for
Sweden to remain neutral, but did not rule out possible engagement. The attacks on

197Sweden Seen Joining West At Last After U.S. Terror. By Peter Starck. Reuters.
September 13, 2001. Persson later clarified his government’s policy, saying it supported a
“proportionate” military response that avoided civilian casualties. Sweden Supports
“Proportional” US military Action. AFP. October 7, 2001.
198For more information on Sweden’s military contribution, see: Foreign Support Of the
U.S. War On Terrorism. Coordinated by Steven A. Hildreth. CRS Rpt.RL31152. Updated
July 11, 2002. p. 37. Military Missions In mind As Swedish Minister Visits. By Nora
Boustany. Washington Post. May 29, 2002. p. A12.
*Prepared by Carl Ek, Specialist in International Relations, Foreign Affairs, Defense, and
Trade Division, CRS. October 17, 2002.

the United States appear to have nudged the Swedes even further away from their
traditional policy. In November, Swedish Deputy Foreign Minister Hans Dahlgren
stated that “[j]ust because we have the option of neutrality doesn’t mean we have to
be neutral. We are certainly not neutral in the war against terrorism. We are
participating in this struggle like any other friend of the United States.”199 However,
during a February 2002 summit in Stockholm, the Network of Progressive
Governance–a group of center-left ruling parties, including those from Sweden,
France and the UK–issued a statement urging the United States to go beyond military
measures in combating terrorism: “Our response is clear: we must be resolute in
fighting terrorism and equally resolute in tackling its causes.”200
Despite its past non-committal defense policy, Sweden has long been quite
active in world affairs; as a smaller power, it has sought to leverage its influence by
acting through the United Nations and other international organizations. Sweden
believes strongly in gaining multinational approval prior to taking actions such as
economic and diplomatic sanctions and military intervention. The Swedes are keenly
interested in areas such as human rights, preventive diplomacy, and disarmament.
In the post-9/11 environment, a key point to emerge has been Sweden’s desire to
pursue terrorists while at the same time ensuring that the legal rights of groups and
individuals are respected.
It is not publicly known whether the United States has made specific requests
of the Swedish government for cooperation in the war against terrorism. However,
a U.S. government official noted that Sweden has proved to be “extremely helpful”
to the United States through its work within the European Union (EU). For example,
when Sweden held the revolving EU presidency in the first half of 2001, it helped
gain approval of a U.S.-EU legal assistance agreement. More recently, Sweden has
pushed for the development of an EU clearinghouse on terrorist organizations. It is
unlikely that the United States would be as far as it is without the Swedes’
cooperation, the official said. Also, Sweden announced on February 13, 2001 that
it would join with three other Nordic countries to evaluate the freezing of assets of
suspected terrorists – in the context of individual legal rights.
Key Legislation
With the exception of two major incidents in the 1970s, Sweden has had
comparatively little direct experience with terrorism. Its law on terrorism, which
dates from that period, gives the police broad powers of arrest, and allows for the
removal from Sweden of people who are considered undesirable; it “allows the
authorities to act even before there is full evidence of a crime being planned.”201 The

199Sweden Rethinking Neutrality In the Face of New Global Threats. By Carol J. Williams.
Los Angeles Times. November 4, 2001. p. A-3.
200Center-Left Leaders Urge U.S. To Look Beyond Military Means. By Kim Gamel. AP.
February 22, 2002.
201UN Security Council. Letter dated 20 December from the Permanent Representative of
Sweden to the United Nations addressed to the Chairman of the Committee established

Special Control of Foreigners law provides police a different set of ground rules
when suspects are not Swedish citizens, residents, or asylum seekers; the target group
is therefore limited to people who wind up in the country for a short time. There has
been some uncertainty over how the EU’s Shengen agreement affects the
implementation of this law. With the freedom of movement provided for under the
accord, some argue, the Swedish law presumably cannot apply to a German national,
but it could apply to an Iraqi or Iranian who arrived in the country. The law has not
been changed recently. The Swedes have a great deal of faith in its effectiveness, but
some American policymakers remain to be convinced, as it has yet to be tested.
On the other hand, Sweden has one of the most fully developed sets of laws on
the protection of civil liberties. Observers have noted that these statutes make it
difficult for the police to use surveillance and wiretapping – both activities are
severely circumscribed in the case of Swedish citizens.
Recent Actions
In the post-war period, Sweden has had a policy of welcoming refugees. This
open door policy has had its problems, however; observers believe that some
individuals who have received asylum may have had affiliations, active or past, with
major terrorist groups. For example, Algerians living in Sweden were linked to the
GIA extremists who were responsible for the 1995 Paris subway bombings, and the
1988 Lockerbie bombing may have had a Swedish connection.202 Also, in late
September 2001, it was reported that Sweden’s Security Police (SÄPO) had a list of
15-20 individuals who had received training in Afghanistan. SÄPO has been
monitoring their activities in Sweden, but, according to a U.S. official, if those
individuals are not breaking a law, the authorities cannot act against them. At the
end of September, a British television report quoted retired FBI and CIA officials
who alleged that Sweden had become a haven for terrorists. Swedish authorities
denied the charges.
In the 10 months since the attacks on the United States, Sweden has been
involved in five prominent incidents related to the war on terrorism. Three of these
illustrate the country’s traditional policy of emphasizing safeguards of individual
legal rights; the other two, however, suggest a greater willingness to take action
against people suspected of having ties to terrorists.
Extradition of Egyptians. In December 2001, Sweden repatriated two
Egyptian asylum seekers.203 One of the two had been convicted in absentia by an
Egyptian military court in 1999 of having planned and undertaken acts of terrorism.

pursuant to resolution 1373 (2001) concerning counter-terrorism. p. 5.
202Algerian Militant Accused By France Denies He's A Terrorist. AFP. November 11, 1995.
Defence Accuses Palestinian Group In Lockerbie Trial. By Kevin McElderry. AFP.
January 11, 2001.
203Swedish Government Repatriates Two Suspected Terrorists to Egypt. By Karl Ritter. AP.
December 20, 2002.

Sweden extradited the two in part because of a new UN resolution that urges
countries not to allow terrorists to shield themselves behind countries’ refugee status
claims. Although Stockholm had received assurances that the two would not face the
death penalty, Amnesty International criticized the Swedish government’s decision.
It was later reported that one of the two Egyptians who had been deported was
believed to have been plotting “security threatening activity.”204 Observers note that
the deportation was a first, not just for Sweden, but for Europe, and assert that it
represented a real change in attitude and policy.
Camp X-Ray. In January, 2001, Sweden criticized the living conditions of205
detainees being held in the U.S. Guantanamo Bay naval base in Cuba. Stockholm
also requested access to one of the detainees, who was believed to be a Swedish
citizen. Government representatives traveled to Cuba, interviewed the detainee, and
released a report saying he had not been mistreated (the situation was likened to the
John Walker Lindh case in the United States). Sweden has continued to press the
United States for a statement of its future intentions toward the detainees, and has
criticized America’s legal authority to hold the detainees, since they have not been
granted normal prisoner-of-war status. Some Swedish analysts maintain that the
Geneva Convention requires the use of an external tribunal in such cases.
Somali Swedes. In November, the Swedish government ordered banks to
freeze the accounts of three Somali-born Swedes whose names had been placed by
the United States on the UN Security Council’s sanctions committee’s list of people
and groups suspected of financing terrorism. The three admitted that they had
managed the Swedish branch of a Al-Barakaat, a Somali hawala (money-transfer
service), but denied that it had had any link to Al Qaeda, as the United States
claimed. Sweden did not maintain that the three were innocent, but objected on
procedural grounds, and argued that UN sanctions should be open to review and
appeal.206 In February 2002, Sweden sought to have the names dropped from the UN
list, but its efforts were blocked by the United States, joined by Russia and Great
Britain. Early on, Stockholm asked Washington for information about why the three
had appeared on the list; in February, Foreign Minister Lindh once more requested
evidence that the men had funneled money to al-Qaida. Sweden denied that the
information supplied by the United States was sufficient to implicate the Swedish
nationals.207 Although the Swedes tended to regard the assets freeze as punishment,
Americans view it as a commonly used legal tool, a preventative measure under
which assets may be temporarily blocked during ongoing legal investigations.208 The
issue strained U.S.-Swedish relations; Jan Eliasson, Sweden’s ambassador to the

204Sweden Declassifies Documents On Egyptian Terror Suspects. AP. April 11, 2002.
205Sweden Asks UN To Drop Three Nationals From Terror Funding List. AFP. January 22,


206US Stops Sweden Bid To Clear Three On Terror List. By Evelyn Leopold. Reuters.
January 31, 2002.
207Shunned In Sweden: How Drive To Block Funds For Terrorism Entangled Mr. Aden. By
Christopher Cooper. Wall Street Journal. May 6, 2002. p. A1.
208Freezing Their Assets In Sweden. By Robert Flint. Dow Jones Reports. February 20,


United States, held “intense and low-key talks” with U.S. officials on the situation.209
There was strong public support for the Somali-Swedes; a private drive for funds
raised $28,000 for the three, who had lost access to their bank accounts. The case
was further complicated by the fact that one of the men intended to run for political
office–possibly for parliament–in the fall.210 On July 15, it was reported that the
United States was close to making a decision to de-list the three men, and on July 18
the UN announced that it would revise its guidelines on freezing assets. On August

27, the United States dropped the names from the list.

Arrest of 2 Palestinians. On June 6, Swedish police in Malmö arrested two
Palestinians attempting to enter the country. The Justice Ministry refused to release
the two, who before coming to Sweden had reportedly met with individuals
connected to terrorism, had entered the country with false documentation, and were
connected to a terrorism investigation in another country. A SÄPO official three
weeks later stated that the two detainees had connections to Hamas. On July 11, the
Swedish Justice Ministry announced that the two would be deported.
Armed Airline Passenger. In late August, Kerim Sadok Chatty, a Swede
of Tunisian origin, was detained while boarding a London-bound flight at Västerås
airport when security personnel discovered a handgun in his luggage. Chatty, 29, a
former boxer with a criminal record, had received some flight training in South
Carolina in 1996. He denied that he was planning to commandeer the plane. At the
end of September, prosecutors released Chatty after concluding it was unlikely he had
planned to highjack the aircraft, although investigations continue.

209US Blocks Sweden Bid To Clear Trio on Terror List. By Evelyn Leopold. Reuters.
February 1, 2002.
210Abdirisak Adan did run for parliament, but failed to garner sufficient votes. I Årets
Valrörelse Fanns Det Några Som Stack Ut. Svenska Dagbladet. September 19, 2002.

U.S. officials say they are pleased with Swiss legal and judicial cooperation in
the fight against terrorism. U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft has praised the
“constructive conduct of the Swiss government and banking system” in stemming
terrorist financing following September 11, and Washington continues to encourage
Switzerland to remain vigilant to prevent abuse of its banking system by terrorists
and other criminals. Nevertheless, despite the government’s stated strong political
commitment to countering terrorism, critics contend that Switzerland still faces some
problems enforcing its anti-money laundering laws and Bern remains reluctant to
engage in more general international exchanges of financial information.
Combating Terrorist Financing
Despite the persistent stereotype of Switzerland as a haven for international
scoundrels and their ill-gotten gains, Switzerland has sought to clean up its financial
act over the past decade. Analysts attribute Swiss efforts to clamp down on money
laundering to a growing international campaign against financial crime and a series
of embarrassing disclosures that corrupt leaders such as the late Philippine President
Ferdinand Marcos–as well as drug traffickers and arms dealers–were using
Switzerland as a depository for their illegal assets. Swiss policymakers and bankers
in the 1990s were also stung by international criticism of their handling of Holocaust
victims’ bank accounts, and apparently came to recognize that Switzerland’s
reputation was in need of repair.
Swiss authorities assert that Switzerland now has some of the world’s toughest
anti-money laundering laws, and that Switzerland’s banking secrecy practices do not
protect terrorists. The Swiss Penal Code criminalizes money laundering, which
carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison if conducted by a member of a
criminal group. The Federal Money Laundering Act of 1997 requires all financial
intermediaries–both banks and other non-bank financial intermediaries such as fund
managers, insurers, currency exchange houses, and security brokers–to freeze
suspected assets immediately for up to five business days, and to inform the Money
Laundering Reporting Office (MLRO).211 The MLRO then investigates and
determines whether the suspicions are warranted and whether the assets should
remain blocked. Swiss law enforcement authorities may also freeze financial assets
and seize corresponding documents in the course of a criminal investigation, or in
response to judicial assistance requests from foreign prosecuting officials. In
addition, Swiss banks must abide by “know your customer” rules that require them
to verify identities before accepting funds for deposit.

211The 1997 Act took effect on April 1, 1998.
*Prepared by Kristin Archick, Consultant in European Affairs, Foreign Affairs, Defense,
and Trade Division, CRS. October 17, 2002.

Following September 11, Swiss authorities alerted Swiss banks and other
financial institutions to check their records and accounts against U.S. and U.N. lists
of persons and entities with suspected terrorist ties. To date, Swiss investigators have
not discovered any evidence indicating that Swiss financial institutions played a role
in transferring funds used by the September 11 hijackers. A total of about $23
million, however, remains frozen in 72 Swiss bank accounts of individuals or
companies suspected of having ties to Al Qaeda, the Taliban, or other international
terrorists.212 The Swiss say they continue to investigate the Al Taqwa/Nada
Management Organization–based in Lugano in southern Switzerland–which the
United States believes has been a key Al Qaeda funder. In November 2001, Swiss
authorities, acting in cooperation with counterparts in Italy and Liechtenstein,
searched the company’s headquarters and its owners’ private residences. No criminal
charges have been filed, but the firm’s assets and those of several of its board
members have been frozen. In response to a French request for judicial assistance
this past March, Swiss authorities raided 13 addresses associated with a half-brother
of Osama bin Laden who resides in Switzerland and manages the Saudi family’s
investments in Europe.
Swiss officials also highlight their efforts in international forums to combat
money-laundering and terrorist financing. Bern is seeking to introduce a new
provision in the Swiss criminal code against terrorist funding to allow it to ratify the
1999 U.N. Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism by the end
of the year.213 Switzerland also supports the international Financial Action Task
Force on Money Laundering’s recommendations for clamping down on terrorist
funding. Bilaterally, Bern has sought to promote closer cooperation between Swill
and U.S. law enforcement authorities investigating the September 11 attacks and
their financing. In September 2002, Bern and Washington concluded a working
agreement to this effect. Among other measures, it will permit an exchange of Swill
liaison officers with the U.S. Treasury Department and the FBI.
Other Counterterrorist Efforts
The Swiss Penal Code does not contain specific anti-terrorism provisions, but
Swiss officials argue that existing measures are sufficient because the law
criminalizes all potential terrorist actions such as murder, hostage-taking,
intentionally spreading illnesses, and supporting criminal organizations. All of these
offenses carry prison terms, and a newly proposed revision of the Penal Code would
enable crimes constituting terrorist attacks to be prosecuted more severely than at
present.214 Switzerland also hopes to accede this year to the 1997 U.N. Convention

212Embassy of Switzerland, Press Release, “Regulation on measures against persons or
organizations with ties to Osama Bin Laden, the Al Qaeda group, or the Taliban”,
September 13, 2002 (
213The Swiss Senate, however, may hinder this goal. In September 2002, the Senate rejected
ratifying the Convention until a more thorough review of its implications for Swiss law is
undertaken. BBC, “Swill stall on U.N. Conventions Against Terrorism”, September 24,


214Embassy of Switzerland, Press Release, “Switzerland adopts further barriers to terrorism,”

for the Suppression of Terrorist Bombings; the government claims that its provisions
are compatible with Swiss law already in force.
On September 15, 2001, the Swiss established a special unit–Task Force Terror
USA–within the Department of Justice and Police to coordinate all aspects of
Switzerland’s criminal investigation into the terrorist attacks and to cooperate with
U.S. and other foreign law enforcement authorities. The Task Force has examined
more than 900 leads, but uncovered no direct links between individuals or entities in
Switzerland and the attacks. Lead hijacker Mohammed Atta transited Zurich’s
airport in July 2001, as did suspected Al Qaeda “dirty bomber” José Padilla, who was
arrested by U.S. authorities in May 2002. U.S. officials have voiced public
appreciation for Swiss assistance in keeping Padilla under surveillance during his
stopover in Switzerland and while on board a flight to Chicago. Swiss officials
downplay these events, but some terrorist experts suggest that the transit of these
individuals through Switzerland could indicate a more significant presence of Al
Qaeda facilitators in the country.215
The Swiss government is concerned that other foreign extremists–especially
ethnic Albanian groups from the Balkans and the Tamil Tigers from Sri Lanka–are
using Switzerland as a base for financing and recruiting. In November 2002, Bern
banned Tamil representatives from collecting money or distributing propaganda.216
Swiss officials claim that they screen asylum-seekers to prevent suspected terrorists
or other criminals from gaining legal residency and that they can revoke refugee
status also. Switzerland is introducing a new computer-based visa issuance system
linking all Swiss diplomatic missions and border posts in order to enhance
communication and prevent visa fraud. Bern is also anxious to improve cooperation
with the European Union (EU) on asylum and migration issues, and hopes to join the
Schengen Convention, which permits freedom of movement among 13 EU member
states, plus Iceland, and Norway. Switzerland views its exclusion from the Schengen
Information System–a computer database of wanted persons and objects–as a serious
impediment to its ability to maintain effective border controls. Negotiations on
Schengen, however, have just begun and Swiss officials say other contentious Swiss-
EU disputes over banking secrecy and tax practices are impeding progress.217
Although most analysts assess the Swiss government’s political will to counter
terrorism and terrorist financing as strong, many also point out that enforcement

June 27, 2002 (
215AFP, “Al Qaeda network of sleeper agents still intact,” May 15, 2002.
216Immigrants account for about 20 percent of Switzerland’s population; most are from
elsewhere in Europe, especially the Balkans and Turkey. Sri Lankans form the largest group
of non-Europeans. Nicole Steck, “Switzerland faces extremist, organized crime threat more
than terror,” AP, July 10, 2002; “Post-war immigrants make up quarter of Swiss
population,” AFP, December 17, 2002.
217Interview of Swiss official, August 2002.

challenges remain. Swiss authorities admit they often lack the necessary police
intelligence information to locate laundered funds. They assert this is especially
problematic when trying to track down what they term “reverse money-
laundering”–in which businesses or charities may channel funds to terrorists, usually
in very small amounts–or if the hawala money transfer system is used. A number of
critics also claim that Swiss privacy laws may stymie police investigations because
strong proof of wrongdoing is necessary before judges will grant law enforcement
officials access to bank documents and financial records.
According to the U.S. Department of State, the Swiss banking community
generally cooperates with anti-money laundering laws. Lapses still occur, however.
This July, for example, Swiss banking regulators reprimanded Switzerland’s largest
bank–UBS–for its lack of due diligence in handling funds now allegedly linked to
former Nigerian dictator Sani Abacha. The State Department is more critical of
Switzerland’s non-bank financial intermediaries’ non-compliance with the 1997 Act
against money laundering.218 MLRO statistics available for 2000 indicate that out of
a total of 311 reports of suspicious transactions, only 75 came from non-bank
institutions.219 Observers attribute enforcement difficulties in the non-banking sector
to insufficient resources and remaining grey areas in Swiss anti-laundering
legislation. The Money Laundering Control Authority (MLCA), established in 1998
to monitor Switzerland’s non-bank financial intermediaries, remains less than fully
staffed despite recent reforms increasing its personnel allowance from 12 to 25
officials.220 As of late 2001, about 500 financial intermediaries’ registration
applications had not yet been processed by the MLCA. Swiss laws do not spell out
whether its financial reporting requirements and “know your customer” rules apply
to commodity traders–such as Marc Rich, accused by the United States of tax
evasion–or to offshore companies administered by Swiss lawyers on behalf of their
Critics also contend that as long as Switzerland clings to its long-held tradition
of banking secrecy, it will remain an attractive center for money-launderers and
criminal elements. Switzerland continues to resist EU entreaties to lift its bank
secrecy rules to permit a greater exchange of financial information in order to
increase transparency of international financial flows. The Swiss say that such
pressure to reform their banking practices pre-dates September 11 and stems more
from European desires to track down tax evaders rather than terrorists.221 They

218Prior to passage of the 1997 law, these non-bank financial institutions were unregulated,
but now must apply for a license and adhere to due diligence rules. They must also join one
of 12 Swiss self-regulating bodies or apply for direct government supervision. See “Money
Laundering and Financial Crimes” in the U.S. Department of State’s 2001 International
Narcotics Control Strategy Report (
219Fiona Fleck, “Non-bank sector the new focus of scrutiny,” FT, November 16, 2001.
220In June 2001, the head of the MCLA resigned, complaining that the office was cash-
starved, under-staffed, and increasingly at odds with the Finance Ministry. This followed
the resignations in August 2000 of the top two officials at the MLRO, who left citing similar
221In comparison to the United States and other European countries, tax evasion is

maintain that they have no intention of abandoning their confidential banking
system–recognized as a key reason why Switzerland controls around one-third of the
world’s off-shore private banking market–but this does not pose an obstacle to their
anti-terrorist or anti-laundering efforts. Nevertheless, some experts doubt this
commitment and suggest that Swiss authorities, eager to preserve Switzerland’s
status as an anonymous banking haven, were initially reluctant to go after Al Taqwa
and only did so after high-level U.S. intervention.222

considered in Switzerland to be an administrative rather than a criminal offense. Clare
Nullis, “Swiss block more bank accounts,” AP, May 3, 2002.
222Mark Hosenball, “Terror’s Cash Flow,” Newsweek, March 25, 2002.

Turkey conducted a war against an insurgency waged by the Kurdistan People’s
Party (PKK), primarily in southeast Turkey, from 1984-1999, during which over 30,
000 lives were lost. It views the PKK as a terrorist organization, not as a Kurdish
liberation movement. The United States agrees with Turkey’s assessment of the
PKK and has designated the PKK as a Foreign Terrorist Organization for many years.
Turkey greatly appreciates the determination and contrasts it with the European
Union’s much more belated assessment of the PKK as a terrorist organization. When
the PKK changed its name to the Kurdistan Freedom and Democracy Congress
(KADEK) and claimed to have adopted a political agenda, the U.S. Administration
said that the name change would not allow the group to elude the terrorist
designation.223 The EU, again in comparison, has not agreed that KADEK is a
terrorist organization. Since 9/11, Turkey has claimed commonality between its war
against the PKK and the U.S. war against terrorism and welcomed the opportunity
to reciprocate what it considered U.S. acts of principle and friendship.
As a result of the war with the PKK and other threats, Turkey has many laws on
the books that can be applied in the fight against terrorism. These include the Law
on the Fight against Terrorism, the Law on the Prevention of Money Laundering, and
the Law on the Prevention of Benefit-Oriented Criminal Organizations. The first
prohibits activities of organizations found to have supported terror movements. Such
support is considered a crime. The second law calls for harsher penalties for money
laundering if the money had been derived from terrorism than if it had resulted from
other activities. The Turkish Penal Code regulates punishment for terrorism. A
number of regulations issued by the Capital Market Board also bar the financing of
terrorist activity.224
It should be noted that the U.S. State Department and international human rights
organizations have long criticized Turkey for its sweeping definition of terrorism and
harsh application of many of its laws. They charge that the war against the PKK
resulted in human rights abuses against innocent civilians by both the PKK and the
government of Turkey. With respect to the government, this was particularly true in
11 southeast provinces placed under a state of emergency, where what many consider
authoritarian rule prevailed. (A state emergency now exists in only two provinces,
where it is scheduled to be lifted before December.) Moreover, terrorist offenses are
tried in State Security Courts where due process rights receive fewer protections.

223PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan was elected KADEK general chairman, although he has
been in prison in Turkey since 1999. A Kocgiri,, KADEK’s Goal is Democratic
Liberation, Ozgur Politika, April 17, 2002, translation entered into Foreign Broadcast
Information Service (FBIS) online, April 17, 2002.
224Measures taken by the Republic of Turkey against Terrorism, Report to the Security
Council Committee established pursuant to Resolution 1373 (2001), December 2001.
*Prepared by Carol Migdalovitz, Specialist in Middle Eastern Affairs, Foreign Affairs,
Defense, and Trade Division, CRS. August 15, 2002.

Counterterrorism Since 9/11
U.S. Ambassador to Turkey W. Robert Pearson and other U.S. officials have
said that Turkey has responded positively to every request that the United States has
made for assistance with regard to the war in Afghanistan and the wider international
campaign against Al Qaeda. Turkey blocked funding for Al Qaeda by freezing the
assets of people and companies linked by the United States to Osama bin Laden and
associated groups in Egypt, Libya, Uzbekistan, and Somalia.
Turkey increased security on the border with Iran to prevent Afghans from
entering Turkey illegally. In most cases, detained Afghans are deported; some apply
for asylum. Turkish border guards arrested Al Qaeda operatives allegedly en route
from Iran to perpetrate attacks in Israel.225 They also arrested Turkish Al Qaeda
suspects attempting to return from Afghanistan. In August 2002, police from the
Ankara Anti-Terrorism Division, acting on information from the FBI, captured a
Turkish citizen who later confessed to acting as an Al Qaeda courier and carrying
money for the group. The man was detained at Esenboga Airport in Ankara after
flying in from Germany.
Turkey refused to grant asylum to Muhammad Solikh, a former presidential
candidate in Uzbekistan and leader of a banned opposition party there. The Uzbek
government alleges that Solikh has ties to the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan
(IMU), a fundamentalist group whose members fought with the Taliban in
Afghanistan and which is on the U.S. list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations. (Some
observers, including Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, where Solikh has been a
commentator, doubt the Uzbek regime’s charges against Solikh. They believe that
the government is using the war against terrorism for its suppression of the domestic
political opposition.) Solikh eventually was granted asylum in Norway.
Turks sympathize with the Chechens in their fight against Russia and about
2,000 Chechens have found shelter with kin in Turkey. Others have received hospital
care in Turkey. However, several Chechens undertook actions in Turkey to gain
international attention for their cause that tested Turkey’s sympathy and led the
Turkish government to adopt a harder line toward them. In January 1996, Chechens
hijacked a ferry in the Black Sea en route from Sochi, Russia to Trabzon, Turkey.
In March 2001, Chechens hijacked a Russian aircraft shortly after it took off from
Turkey and forced it to land in the Muslim holy city of Medina, Saudi Arabia. A
Turkish passenger and stewardess died when Saudi troops stormed the plane. In May
2002, a Chechen took eight tourists hostage at a prominent Istanbul hotel; all were
freed unharmed. With the last incident, Turkey became concerned for its profitable
tourism industry. The Turkish government refused to allow the World Chechen
Congress to meet in Istanbul. Turkey also froze the bank accounts of some Chechen
organizations that might be linked to Al Qaeda, and banned Chechen fund-raising in
Turkey. Nonetheless, Russia has expressed dismay at Turkey’s policies toward the
Chechens. It complains that the Turkish judicial system has treated Chechen culprits
as common criminals, not terrorists. And, in November 2001, Russian President

225Douglas Frantz and James Risen, A Secret Iran-Arafat Connection is seen Fueling the
Mideast Fire, The New York Times, March 24, 2002.

Vladimir Putin charged that Turkey had allowed the transit of Chechen militants
going to Afghanistan. With regard to the last charge, Turkey replied that the entry
of all Russian citizens was governed by a visa agreement between Turkey and
Russia. 226
Immigration/Border Controls
Turkey is a transit country for individuals seeking to immigrate illegally from
the Middle East, Africa, and South Asia to Europe. Turkey has long, sometimes
porous, borders with its eastern neighbors. Most illegal immigrants appear to be
captured not at those borders but rather on the ones on the west, abutting Greece and
Bulgaria, before they enter Europe. In 2001, 86,104 people entered Turkey illegally;
some 5% of them requested asylum.227

226Turkey regrets Russian President’s Remarks on Transit of Russian Militants, Anatolia
News Agency, November 14, 2001, carried by BBC Monitoring European-Political,
November 14, 2001.
227Illegal Immigration in Turkey remains High in 2002, Anatolia News Agency, January 11,

2002, transmitted by BBC Monitoring European-Political, January 11, 2002.

United Kingdom*
UK officials assert that London is Washington’s leading ally in the fight against
terrorism. On September 12, Prime Minister Tony Blair stated that he considered the
terrorist attacks of the day before an attack on Britain. Blair offered any help
necessary, including British military assets and troops. Since September 11, the
United Kingdom has sought to act robustly in clamping down on terrorist activities
within its own borders by further strengthening its counter-terrorist legislation and
freezing about $10 million in suspected terrorist assets. British police and
intelligence agencies have also served as key investigative partners for U.S.
authorities. Like the United States, however, the UK has had to balance its efforts
to boost law enforcement capabilities and tighten its anti-terror laws against its well-
entrenched commitment to protecting civil liberties and democratic ideals. In some
cases, civil rights advocates have successfully checked the government’s anti-terror
efforts. Political considerations also constrain some elements of London’s counter-
terrorist policies, and could limit U.S.-UK cooperation in the future as Washington
contemplates expanding the war on terrorism beyond Al Qaeda and Afghanistan.
A History of Combating Terrorism
The United Kingdom has suffered dozens of terrorist attacks on its soil over the
last several decades from groups seeking to end British rule in Northern Ireland.
Since 1969, over 3,200 people have died as a result of political violence in Northern
Ireland, including about 100 individuals on the British mainland. In response, the
UK instituted a wide range of counter-terrorist legislative measures over the years.
In 1974, the government introduced an initially temporary Prevention of Terrorism
Act outlawing membership, support, and assistance for the Irish Republican Army
(IRA). Other controversial measures followed, such as internment, which allowed
suspected terrorists to be detained without charges or trial for a prolonged period of
time.228 During the 1980s and 1990s, British anti-terrorist legislation was reviewed
and modified periodically, but remained mostly focused on countering Northern
Ireland-related groups.
In 2000, however, the government introduced a new Terrorism Act to make its
counter-terrorist legislation both permanent and applicable to all forms of
terrorism–domestic and international. This decision followed on the heels of several
brutal terrorist incidents such as the massacre of a group of European tourists in
Luxor, Egypt, and the U.S. embassy bombings in Kenya and Tanzania. The
Terrorism Act 2000, which took effect in February 2001, banned 21 extremist
groups, including Al Qaeda and 15 other Islamic terrorist organizations, and

228This measure was eventually abandoned by the British government in response to
international criticism and allegations of human rights abuses.
*Prepared by Kristin Archick, Consultant in European Affairs, Foreign Affairs, Defense,
and Trade Division, CRS. October 17, 2002.

prohibited recruiting or fundraising activities in their support. The UK has also
ratified all 12 UN conventions related to combating terrorism.
Britain’s Muslim Community and Al Qaeda
The United Kingdom is home to approximately 1.5 million Muslims. The vast
majority are not involved in radical activities, but a vocal fringe community exists.
Experts say that over the last 20 years, the UK’s liberal asylum and immigration
laws, as well as its free speech and “watchful tolerance” traditions, have attracted
extremist Muslim clerics and Middle Eastern dissidents. These clerics have
reportedly found a fertile recruitment ground among British Muslim youth, many of
whom are the children of immigrant parents who arrived in the UK in the 1960s.
Critics claim that Britain’s Muslims are disproportionately unemployed and
imprisoned, and that the government has not done enough to encourage their
integration into mainstream British society.229 They note the popularity of UK-based
Al Muhajiroun, a fundamentalist Muslim youth movement that claims to have
between 6,500 and 7,000 members, promotes jihad against Israel, and supports
Osama Bin Laden. Radical mosques in London’s Finsbury Park and Brixton
neighborhoods apparently schooled Richard Reid, the alleged airplane “shoe
bomber,” and Zacharias Moussaoui, the French-Moroccan accused by the United
States of being the “20th” September 11 hijacker. UK authorities estimate that
hundreds of British Muslims recruited through such mosques and youth organizations
have received military training at terrorist camps in Afghanistan; at least seven UK
citizens fighting with Al Qaeda and the Taliban were captured and transported by
U.S. authorities to Guantánamo Bay, Cuba.
Even before September 11, other countries complained that Britain was a
breeding ground and haven for radical Islamic terrorist groups. France charged that
the Algerian Armed Islamic Group (GIA) used London as an operational base from
which to carry out bombings in Paris in the mid-1990s. Cairo has long argued that
British complacency allowed members of the Egyptian Islamic Jihad to operate on
its territory with impunity.230 U.S. intelligence believes that both of these groups are
closely linked to Al Qaeda. Critics say that like other European capitals, London
underestimated Al Qaeda’s threat to the UK for far too long. They point out that 11
of the 19 September 11 hijackers stayed in or transited Britain at some point during
the nine months prior to the attacks. London counters that its anti-terrorism
legislation of February 2001 was intended to address such growing concerns about
the presence of Al Qaeda and other radical Islamic groups in Britain, but admit that
clearly it did not have much time to show results.

229Danna Harman, “Radical Islam finds unlikely haven in liberal Britain,” Christian Science
Monitor, August 5, 2002; Jonathan Stevenson, “Safe harbors: Britain’s new terrorism
problem,” Wall Street Journal, November 15, 2001.
230Charles Sennott, “In Europe, concern for rights slows terror war,” Boston Globe, August

5, 2002.

Law Enforcement post-September 11
Since September 11, British authorities have questioned and arrested dozens of
individuals allegedly tied to Al Qaeda or other militant Islamic groups throughout the
UK. Although most charges brought are not specifically related to the September 11
attacks, several suspects have been accused of belonging to proscribed terrorist
organizations; others are being held for lesser offenses such as immigration
violations. Many in the UK suspected of supporting or recruiting for Al Qaeda
remain under police investigation and surveillance, including two radical Muslim
leaders–Syrian-born asylum-seeker Omar Baki Mohammed of Al Muhajiroun, and
Egyptian-born Abu Hamza Al Masri, who heads the Finsbury Park mosque. U.S. and
UK officials say cooperation between their respective police, security, and
intelligence services is close and continuing. Press reports indicate that UK law
enforcement authorities continue to search for Palestinian-born Islamic cleric Abu
Qatada–who was granted asylum in the UK but is suspected by U.S. and other
security services of being a close Bin Laden associate–as well as Omar al Bayoumi,
a post-graduate student residing in the UK who U.S. authorities believe may have231
helped fund some of the September 11 hijackers.
Nevertheless, some critics note that even though UK authorities have stepped
up their law enforcement efforts against Al Qaeda and members of other terrorist
groups, they have not yet been able to make any charges stick. They point, for
example, to the case of Yasser Al Sirri, who has been sentenced to death by Eygpt
for his alleged role in a failed assassination attempt of a former prime minister. Al
Sirri sought political asylum in the UK, where he has resided for about eight years.
In October 2001, Al Sirri was arrested and accused by UK authorities of involvement
in the Al Qaeda assassination of Afghan guerrilla leader Ahmed Shah Massoud, but
British courts dismissed these charges in May 2002, citing a lack of evidence. UK
Home Secretary, David Blunkett, gave the same reason for not pursuing a U.S.
extradition request in July 2002 for Al Sirri on charges that he had provided funding
to Al Qaeda. In April 2002, a British court also refused to extradite Algerian-born
pilot Lofti Raissi to the United States in connection with the September 11 attacks
on the grounds of insufficient evidence; U.S. officials believe Lofti helped train some
of the hijackers. A British former anti-terrorist officer admits that the evidentiary bar
in the UK is set high, which “means that you can’t get half the people you want.”232
Legislative and Political Responses to September 11
Most analysts feel that September 11 served to renew and further invigorate
London’s efforts to enhance its anti-terrorist legislation, improve UK law
enforcement capabilities to better combat global terrorism, and close loopholes in
British asylum and immigration policies that some believe terrorists have already
used to their advantage. Some of these new counter-terrorist proposals, however,
have encountered stiff resistance from British civil liberty and human rights groups

231“The UK Connection,” The Observer, January 20, 2002.
232Ib i d .

who worry that the new laws will compromise domestic legal protections and erode
privacy rights.
Improving Counterterrorism Legislation. Following September 11, the
Blair government committed itself to enhancing the UK’s anti-terror legislation. In
December 2001, the British Parliament passed the Anti-terrorism, Crime, and
Security Act 2001. It sought to strengthen the Terrorism Act 2000 by improving
information-sharing among UK law enforcement agencies, preventing terrorists from
abusing immigration and asylum laws, and tightening security in relation to aviation,
civil nuclear sites, and at laboratories holding stocks of potentially dangerous
biological and chemical substances. A key and controversial provision of the new
Act relates to foreign nationals residing in the UK with suspected terrorist links.
British law prohibits the deportation of individuals to countries where they may face
torture, execution, or other inhumane treatment; many Middle Eastern dissidents over
the years had been granted asylum by the UK precisely because they faced the death
penalty or other harsh sentences in their home countries. Post September 11,
however, the UK could no longer ignore that some of these individuals were showing
up on U.S., UN, and other terrorist lists. To square this circle, the 2001 Act allows
for the extended detention of suspected international terrorists who are deemed a
threat to national security and for whom no immediate prospect of removal exists.
Implementing this new procedure required London to derogate from Article 5 of the
European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR), which prohibits indefinite
detention without trial. British officials assert that Article 15 of the Convention
permits this derogation in times of “public emergency;” in order to retain the
derogation beyond 2006, new legislation will be required.
Since December 2001, eleven suspected Islamic extremists have been detained
under the new Act; nine remain in custody.233 Despite the government’s success in
pushing this measure through last fall, civil liberty advocates have already challenged
it in court on behalf of the nine suspects with some success. In July 2002, the Special
Immigration Appeals Court ruled that the new law breached anti-discrimination
protections (Article 14) in the ECHR because the ability to detain indefinitely only
applied to non-British citizens. The Court supported the government’s right to
derogate from Article 5, however, saying that it was justified and proportionate to
the national security threat faced by the UK. The detainees will remain in custody
pending a decision on the Home Office’s counter-appeal.
Civil liberty concerns also forced the Blair government to walk back or abandon
some key initiatives originally proposed in the 2001 Act in order to secure its swift
passage. Opposition came both from some members of Blair’s own Labour party,
as well as from Conservative and Liberal Democrat political opponents. Home
Secretary David Blunkett abandoned plans to make inciting religious hatred a
criminal offense because of concerns that it could conflict with freedom of speech
rights. Blunkett’s initial proposals granting British security services greater access
to electronic communications and personal data were also truncated, enabling
Internet service providers to retain such information for an extended period of time

233The two other originally detained suspects voluntarily left the United Kingdom, as
permitted by the Act.

only if there was good reason to believe it was related to terrorism.234 This
concession also responded to concerns from the business community that more wide-
ranging data retention measures could significantly increase their costs. In June
2002, Conservative and Liberal Democrat members of Parliament united again
against a proposal by Blunkett to permit personal information–such as private emails
and telephone records–to be shared among a greater number of governmental
departments without a person’s consent; Blunkett has since shelved the plan,
admitting that he had not anticipated the resulting public outcry.235
In addition to the Anti-terrorism, Crime, and Security Act 2001, the Blair
government recently introduced a draft proposal for a new extradition bill to curb
Britain’s exhaustive appeals process and speed its notoriously long processing times.
Algerian-born Rachid Ramda’s extradition to France on charges that he bankrolled
a series of 1995 Paris metro bombings has been held up for six years, for example,
and remains unresolved. Two suspected Al Qaeda members arrested before
September 11 in connection with the 1998 U.S. embassy bombings in Africa and the
1999 plot to blow up Los Angeles Airport remain in British jails fighting their
extradition to the United States. UK officials estimate that the average extradition
case in the UK takes about 18 months. Shortly after September 11, Prime Minister
Blair stated, “We cannot have a situation in which it takes years to extradite
people.”236 Some civil liberty groups have expressed concern that the provisions
outlined in the draft bill could weaken existing protections preventing suspects from
being extradited for politically motivated reasons, or without sufficient evidence;
they have also criticized the bill for omitting mention of an individual’s right to
freedom from torture or inhumane treatment. The government hopes to introduce the
final version of the bill for Parliamentary consideration this fall.
The draft extradition bill also includes provisions to implement the new
European Union (EU) arrest warrant, which will eliminate the extradition
proceedings among the EU’s 15 member states for 32 offenses, including terrorism,
by 2004. Terms agreed to by all EU member states mandate that the warrant be
executed and the individual surrendered within 90 days. UK officials note that
London has been a strong backer of EU initiatives post-September 11 that seek to

234Current UK data protection laws require companies to destroy logs of sent emails; the
government will develop a Code of Practice for Internet service providers to clarify the types
of data and length of time they may be retained for reasons of national security. The
decision to require renewal of this Code of Practice every two years is also viewed as a
concession made by the government to help assure the passage of the 2001 Act. Cathy
Newman and Andrew Parker, “Blunkett ditches key element of terror bill,” FT, December

14, 2001; BBC News, “Anti-terror laws raise net privacy fears,” November 11, 2001.

235The current Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act of 2000 grants only police,
intelligence, customs, and the Inland Revenue services the right to demand access to email
and telephone records; Blunkett’s failed legislation sought to give this power to seven
additional governmental departments, local authorities, and public bodies such as the Food
Standards Agency. BBC News, “Snoop climbdown by Blunkett,” June 18, 2002; BBC
News, “Snoop plans raise privacy fears,” June 12, 2002.
236Michael Dobbs, “Britain a refuge for Mideast dissidents,” Washington Post, October 7,


boost police and judicial cooperation both among member states, and with U.S. law
enforcement authorities.237 Washington and London are engaged in bilateral talks to
conclude a new extradition treaty to modernize the existing one–an effort begun
before the terrorist attacks. Like its EU partners, however, London opposes the
extradition to the United States of any suspect wanted for a capital crime unless U.S.
authorities waive the right to impose the death penalty.
Stemming Terrorist Financing. The Anti-terrorism, Crime, and Security
Act 2001 attempts to bolster existing legislation related to terrorist financing. The
Terrorism Act 2000 proscribed money-laundering, fundraising, and using or
supplying money for terrorist actions. The 2001 Act strengthens financial reporting
obligations of banks and non-banks by making failure to disclose financial
transactions where there are “reasonable grounds to suspect” terrorist funding a
criminal offense; previous language required reporting on the basis of “knowledge.”
The 2001 Act also allows police to freeze assets at the start of an investigation, and
permits UK authorities to freeze assets of suspected terrorists even in the absence of
a UN or an EU directive. UK officials claim they have seized about $10 million in
suspected terrorist assets since September 11; accounts frozen include those
belonging to any individual or group listed by the United Nations and the United
States.238 London also secured passage of the Proceeds of Crime Act in June 2002,
which aims to make the forfeiture process more efficient and increase the pressure
on lawyers and accountants to report suspicious transactions irrespective of the size
of the funds involved.
U.S. authorities appear pleased with UK efforts to clamp down on terrorist
financing, and claim that Britain is a key partner in the global fight against money
laundering. Nevertheless, some say that Britain remains attractive to money
launderers because of the size and reputation of its strong financial markets. They
note that London, like New York, is a magnet for dirty money–especially from the
Middle East–and enforcement of anti-money laundering laws has sometimes been
lackluster in the past. Others point out that the tax havens of the Channel Islands and
the Isle of Man–Britain’s Crown Dependencies–remain vulnerable to exploitation by
money launderers and other international criminals. Critics also contend that the
UK’s financial intelligence unit–the Economic Crime Unit of the National Criminal
Intelligence Service (NCIS)–has been overwhelmed with reports of suspicious
transactions following the passage of the wider-ranging disclosure requirements in
the 2001 anti-terrorism legislation and other regulatory changes. Officials estimate
that by the end of 2002, reporting will be up by 60 percent over the previous year.
Some observers worry that the NCIS is falling behind in its investigations given the
large increase in volume. NCIS authorities have announced that they will soon

237For more information on EU efforts to better counter terrorism, see CRS Report RL31509,
Europe and Counterterrorism: Strengthening Police and Judicial Cooperation, July 23,


238In April 2002, London announced it would return $85 million of seized Taliban
assets–frozen since February 2001 pursuant to UN Security Council resolutions–to the new
Afghan government. About $5 million in suspected Al Qaeda assets in the UK were also
seized before September 11, and remain frozen. Ed Crooks, “Fraction of terrorist funds
tracked down,” FT, April 13, 2002.

institute a new secure, web-based reporting system to help standardize reports and
accelerate their processing time.239
Tightening Immigration, Asylum, and Border Controls. As noted
above, the UK has sought to clamp down on asylum-seekers and dissidents suspected
of having links to international terrorist organizations. In April 2002, the British
government also unveiled a more comprehensive plan–the Nationality, Immigration
and Asylum Bill–to help prevent possible terrorists and other criminals from gaining
footholds in the UK and counter the perception that Britain is a “soft touch” for
asylum-seekers. The UK attracts more asylum-seekers than any other country in
Europe–about 92,000 people applied last year–and has a huge backlog of applicants.
In 2001, slightly more than 9,000 were deported after their refugee appeals failed.240
Thousands of asylum-seekers disappear into the population each year, as do other
migrants who enter the country legally on tourist or student visas. The new Bill aims
to reform asylum processing procedures, curtail illegal immigration, tighten border
controls, and introduce new citizenship requirements to improve the integration of
foreign nationals into British society. Key among its many measures, the Bill calls
for establishing accommodation centers to house and service asylum-seekers and
links the provision of financial support to reporting requirements in an attempt to
stop claimants from absconding. It also streamlines the appeals process, and
introduces a new “right to carry” scheme requiring carriers to check a database to
confirm that passengers pose no known immigration or security risk.
Government officials hope the Nationality, Immigration, and Asylum Bill will
become law sometime in fall 2002, especially because its passage has been made a
condition for the closure of the Sangatte refugee camp near the French end of the
Channel Tunnel by the end of March 2003 at the latest. After much wrangling, Paris
agreed in July 2002 to London’s demand to shut down the camp, from where
hundreds of asylum-seekers try to reach Britain aboard trains through the Tunnel.
The French blamed Britain’s lax laws for the Sangatte problem, but UK officials
argue that the new Bill will be a solid deterrent. The British government also
announced that it would end some asylum-seekers right to work in Britain while their
claims were being processed, which France and other EU countries maintain was a
major “pull factor” attracting refugees and migrants to the UK.
The British government’s raft of immigration and asylum proposals have met
mixed reactions. Refugee advocates appear pleased with London’s decision to phase
out the voucher support system begun two years ago, which they viewed as degrading
and stigmatizing for asylum-seekers. They are less enthusiastic, however, about
plans to establish accommodation centers, and worried in particular about their
effects on dependent children; original plans called for children of asylum-seekers
to be educated at the centers rather than in mainstream British schools. Refugee
groups vigorously oppose abolishing the right of asylum-seekers in the UK to work

239Jimmy Burns and James Mackintosh, “Police to speed up money laundering
investigations,” FT, July 18, 2002; Jean Eaglesham, “Tougher controls on dirty cash,” FT,
January 14, 2002.
240Ben Leapman, “Record 42,000 asylum seekers win right to stay,” Evening Standard,
August 1, 2002.

if they are not given an initial decision on their application within six months,
asserting that they will face destitution given that most asylum claims take much
longer to process. Many also worry that the truncated appeals process does not
provide adequate protections or sufficient opportunities for redress. In light of such
concerns, the Bill has not had a smooth passage through Parliament. The House of
Lords, the UK’s upper parliamentary body, has voted down or changed key aspects
of the Bill, such as reducing the size of the accommodation centers.
In October 2001, London announced that it would begin issuing identity cards
with photographs and encoded fingerprint data to asylum-seekers, in keeping with
new EU-wide requirements. In the wake of September 11, this sparked a debate in
Britain over whether the government should introduce a national identity card for all
citizens. In July 2002, Home Secretary Blunkett outlined plans for a possible
“entitlement card”–a voluntary ID that could allow individuals to prove their identity
more easily and access a range of public services while reducing fraud. Critics argue
the card would violate privacy rights and data protection laws, and that the costs of
such a scheme would be prohibitive. Moreover, they claim a national ID card would
not stop terrorists from infiltrating Britain, noting that the September 11 hijackers
had all been issued various U.S. ID cards.
Enhancing Intelligence and Police Resources. Critics contend that
Britain’s intelligence agencies have been focused traditionally on combating
terrorism related to the conflict in Northern Ireland. As a result, they have failed to
devote sufficient resources or personnel to countering the threat posed by
organizations like Al Qaeda. A British terrorism expert told the House of
Commons–Britain’s elected chamber–this past June that the UK’s domestic
intelligence service, MI5, had written off many of Britain’s fiery Islamic extremists
as self-promoters who did not pose a serious threat. Others note that a decade of
budget cuts to MI6, Britain’s foreign intelligence service, following the end of the
Cold War has seriously impeded its ability to conduct effective anti-terrorism
operations. Press reports indicate that prior to September 11, only 30 of MI6’s 1,600
officers were assigned to counter-terrorist duties, as opposed to approximately 600
at the CIA. In July 2002, the British government proposed a 7 percent real increase
to the combined budget of the UK’s intelligence agencies between now and 2006 to
improve their counter-terrorist capabilities. Specifically, the new cash infusion is
aimed at enhancing training and boosting recruitment, especially of individuals with
Arabic and Asian language skills; a portion of the budgetary increase will also be
invested in new surveillance equipment and information technology.
Following September 11, the government also provided $46 million in
supplemental emergency funding for the 2001-2002 fiscal year to British police
services to cover the increased costs associated with September 11 investigations and
heightened security measures. Some analysts warn, however, that the real 2.5 percent
budget increase for the police services unveiled in the government’s spending review
this year falls short, especially in comparison to that proposed for the intelligence
services. Others worry that the recent increase in the violence in Northern Ireland

will once again preoccupy and overstretch Britain’s security and intelligence
servi ces. 241
Political Considerations and the War on Terrorism
Although the United Kingdom has sought to stand “shoulder to shoulder” with
the United States in combating international terrorism since the attacks last
September, some policy differences remain. The UK’s own experience with
Northern Ireland colors its perceptions. Many in the UK believe that London’s
attempts in the 1970s and 1980s to curb the threat posed by groups like the IRA with
harsh and repressive law enforcement measures were both counterproductive and
costly in lives, resources, and basic freedoms. Rather than ending terrorist activities,
they argue, UK actions exacerbated the problem–generating international sympathy
and financial support for those engaged in the violence. Similarly, London worries
that Washington may be losing the public opinion battle both in the Arab world and
even among its European allies as a result of its decision to keep Al Qaeda prisoners
at Guantánamo Bay. They also criticize the proposed use of military tribunals on
grounds that they lack transparency and curtail civil rights protections unnecessarily.
As the focus of the U.S. war on terrorism moves beyond Al Qaeda and
Afghanistan, some analysts predict that Prime Minister Blair will face difficulties
agreeing to U.S. policies with regard to Iraq. Of all the European allies, only Britain
has voiced support for possible military action against Iraq in order to remove the
threat posed by Saddam Hussein and his quest to acquire weapons of mass
destruction. However, Blair faces opposition at home–in particular within his own
Labor party–to the use of military force in Iraq. Several members of Blair’s cabinet
have threatened to resign if the UK joins with U.S. forces to oust Saddam in an attack
not sanctioned by the United Nations. Foreign Secretary Jack Straw maintains that
reinstating U.N. weapons inspectors is the main goal of the UK’s Iraq policy, not
regime change. London has also reportedly stressed to U.S. interlocutors that any
plan for a confrontation with Iraq must address what comes after Saddam, and be
accompanied by increased U.S. engagement in the Middle East peace process.242
Some observers suggest that the growing divide within Blair’s Labor party could also
negatively affect the ability of his government to sustain its robust law enforcement
efforts against terrorism.

241Sennott, Op cit.; Jimmy Burns, “MI5 and MI6 in ambitious recruitment drive,” FT, July
20, 2002; Peter Beaumont and David Rose, “MI6: We now need twice as many spies,” The
Guardian, March 9, 2002; Neil Connor, “Police will get millions for terror measures,”
Birmingham Post, November 28, 2001.
242James Blitz, “Blair urging U.S. to work on peace in Middle East,” FT, August 3, 2002.

The Council of Europe*
The 44-member Council of Europe (CoE) is an intergovernmental organization
which aims to uphold and promote human rights, pluralist democracy, and the rule
of law in Europe. It is separate from and unaffiliated with the European Union,
although all 15 EU members are members of the Council of Europe. Among other
things, the Council of Europe develops conventions and agreements for member
states (and sometimes non-member states, including the United States) to sign and
ratify as treaties. States amend their laws to comply with the European conventions,
but the CoE has no supranational authority to enforce these obligations.
The Council of Europe has already concluded several conventions aimed at
combating terrorism and suppressing terrorist activities. These include:
The European Convention on the Suppression of Terrorism
The European Convention on Extradition, and Additional Protocols
The Convention on Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters and Additional
The European Convention on the Transfer of Proceedings in Criminal
The European Convention on Compensation of Victims of Violent Crimes
The Convention on Laundering, Search, Seizure, and Confiscation of the
Proceeds from Crime243
The Convention on Cybercrime
Additional anti-terrorism and anti-crime conventions or protocols may be unveiled
at the next Council of Europe ministerial meeting in Luxembourg in November 2002.
Council of Europe member states share a commitment to observe the rights and
freedoms outlined in the European Convention on Human Rights. CoE members see
the campaign to fight terrorism as essential to the preservation of democracy and
human rights in Europe. However, they also believe that governments’ commitment
to uphold the rule of law and respect for human rights is equally important and that
policies to counter terrorism should not, under any circumstance, go beyond these
Out of concerns about the need to protect human rights while fighting terrorism,
the Council of Europe recently became engaged in developing human rights
standards for counter-terrorism measures. In July, the CoE’s Committee of Ministers
adopted “Guidelines on Human Rights and the Fight Against Terrorism.” The
guidelines establish a code of conduct for governments to protect fundamental rights
in the war on terrorism. The code calls on governments to observe laws and

243More information on these conventions and other Council of Europe activities may be
found at [].
*Prepared by Julie Kim, Specialist in International Relations, Foreign Affairs, Defense, and
Trade Division, CRS. July 30, 2002.

international standards, and establishes a framework for governments providing
guidelines on investigations, arrest and detention, and legal proceedings.
CoE members may not share all U.S. views on appropriate measures to counter
terrorism. For example, CoE members (including all EU member states) do not
sanction use of the death penalty under any circumstance and must renounce the
practice before becoming members. In contrast, neither U.S. courts nor U.S. military
tribunals exclude the death penalty as a possible sentence against a terrorist suspect.
CoE members criticized the U.S. presidential decree establishing military tribunals
for suspected terrorists. The CoE’s guidelines on the fight against terrorism
absolutely prohibit the use of torture and the sentence of the death penalty.
Moreover, it calls for states to deny extradition in cases where the accused could face
the death penalty.
At the same time, the United States supports many other aspects and objectives
of Council of Europe conventions related to counter-terrorism. For example, the
United States participated in the negotiations and signed the Convention on
Cybercrime in November 2001.244

244For more information, see CRS Report RS21208, Cybercrime: The Council of Europe
Convention,April 26, 2002.

European Union*
The September 11 terrorist attacks have given new momentum to European
Union (EU) initiatives to enhance cooperation in the police and judicial fields, both
among its 15 member states and with the United States to better combat terrorism.
For many years, EU initiatives to harmonize national laws and bring down traditional
barriers among police, intelligence, and judicial authorities were hampered by
national sovereignty issues, insufficient resources, and a lack of trust. Since
September 11, the EU has overcome some of these hurdles and reached political
agreement on several initiatives such as the EU arrest warrant, establishing a
common EU definition of terrorism and list of terrorist organizations, and an EU
asset-freezing order. Member states have also sought to strengthen EU police and
judicial institutions to increase coordination and communication in cross-border
Despite these strides, the Union still faces significant challenges ahead.
Implementing many of the agreed measures will take time and could bog down in the
legislative process of individual member states. Weak EU enforcement capabilities,
continued police and intelligence services’ reluctance to share information, ongoing
national sovereignty concerns, domestic preoccupations, and civil liberty
considerations may also hinder EU efforts. Contentious issues such as the use of the
death penalty in the United States and different data protection regimes could also
slow progress on more robust U.S.-EU cooperation. EU leaders contend they are not
blind to the hurdles ahead, but believe they can be overcome. EU member states
view greater cooperation in the law enforcement and judicial fields as a crucial step
on the road to further European integration. Consequently, the EU appears
committed for the long haul.
The Bush Administration, backed by Congress, hopes that EU efforts will
augment European counter-terrorist capabilities, promote better information-sharing,
and ultimately lead to rooting out terrorist cells in Europe that could be planning
other attacks against U.S. interests. Washington views Europe as a key U.S. partner
in international law enforcement efforts and wants to keep a dialogue with the Union
on police and judicial issues open. At the same time, U.S. officials are proceeding
cautiously in order to avoid actions that could damage currently good bilateral police
and judicial relations, or impede ongoing criminal investigations.
For a fuller description of EU efforts to combat terrorism, and an analysis of
their implications for U.S. policy, see CRS Report RL31509, Europe and
Counterterrorism: Strengthening Police and Judicial Cooperation.

*Prepared by Kristin Archick, Consultant in European Affairs, Foreign Affairs, Defense, and
Trade Division, CRS. October 17, 2002.