Department of State established Bureau of Counterterrorism

The U.S. Department of State recently announced the establishment of its Bureau of Counterterrorism, a recommendation made in the Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review completed in 2010.

The Bureau of Counterterrorism was created to head the department’s activities to counter terrorist activities abroad with the support of U.S. allies. The bureau will immediately assume the responsibilities of the Office of the Coordinator of Counterterrorism.

“To secure our future, we must continue to strengthen our international coalition against terrorism, build foreign partner capacity to mitigate terrorist threats, reinforce resilience against attacks, and counter the ideologies and ideas that fuel violent extremism around the world,” the Department of State said.

The new bureau will implement its mission through initiatives designed to strengthen existing diplomatic relationships with partner countries, regional organizations and the United Nations. It will lead the U.S. government’s support of the Global Counterterrorism Forum, a multilateral program that is focused on setting the international counterterrorism agenda.

The Department of State also plans to use the bureau as its center for the development of counterterrorism strategies designed to delegitimize the narratives of violent extremists, to develop positive alternatives for populations that are vulnerable to terrorist recruitment and to build the civil society capacity of partner governments so that they can fight extremism more effectively.

“Protecting the United States, the American people and our interests abroad will remain a challenge in the 21st century,” the Department of State said. “New terrorist threats will require innovative strategies, creative diplomacy, and stronger partnerships. By establishing the Bureau of Counterterrorism, the Department of State will strengthen its efforts to meet this challenge.”