Dr. Makarim Wibisono, a former Indonesian Permanent Representative to the United Nations in New York and former Indonesian Ambassador to the United Nations Security Council, has been confirmed as the Chair of the APEC Task Force on Counter Terrorism.
Dr. Makarim, who is also the Indonesia Senior Official to APEC, said as Taskforce Chair he will strive to build synergy between APEC and other international organizations that are actively working to overcome the terrorist treat.
"The global fight against terrorism is being undertaken by many organizations and members of the international community," said Dr. Makarim.
"To overcome the risk of duplicating counter terrorism efforts, the Task Force will serve as a coordinating body for activities and programs undertaken by APEC fora to counter terrorism.
"It is my expectation that the APEC Counter Terrorism Task Force will act as a liaison body to generate synergy between APEC and other international organizations confronting terrorism.
"Along with the Vice Chair of the APEC Counter Terrorism Task Force, Mr. Keiji Ide of Japan, I will work to confront the threat that terrorism poses to our regional economy."
Dr. Makarim said part of the drive to protect APEC economies from terrorism is due to the region's experience of the destruction terrorism can cause.
"Several APEC member economies have experienced first-hand the pain and horror of terrorism, and all 21 APEC members are committed to confronting the terrorist threat.
"The APEC Counter Terrorism Taskforce will work to achieve the goals established by the APEC Leaders to counter terrorism.
"APEC leaders have given APEC forums and working groups a mandate to confront the terrorist threat while at the same time ensuring that APEC's free trade and investment goals remain on track.
"Specific areas of operation will include the priorities laid out in the APEC Counter Terrorism Action Plan. These priorities include protecting cargoes as well as ships and aircraft that are engaged in international voyages, protecting people in transit and halting the financing of terrorism."
The first meeting of the APEC Counter Terrorism Task Force will take place in Khon Kaen, Thailand this coming May.