State Department official details counterterrorism funding priorities during congressional hearing

Ambassador-at-Large and Coordinator for Counterterrorism for the U.S. Department of State Tina Kaidanow detailed counterterrorism budget priorities for 2015 on Tuesday at a House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Terrorism, Nonproliferation, and Trade hearing.

Kaidanow cited a shifting security landscape and President Barack Obama's May 28 West Point speech as factors in how the State Department will approach security challenges in the future.

Building the capacity of U.S. allies to interdict terrorist travel while denying access to money, resources and support to terrorist organizations is a key priority of the State Department's counterterrorism strategy, Kaidanow said.

"Increasing the ability of our partners to address terrorist threats within their borders and regions is crucial," Kaidanow said. "Building partner capacity in law enforcement, countering terrorism finance, and travel interdiction programs is at the heart of our civilian counterterrorism efforts."

Another funding priority for the State Department in 2015 is countering violent extremism through combating propaganda in social media, as well as supporting U.S. partners in developing their own strategies, Kaidanow said.

Other international efforts identified by Kaidanow as State Department funding priorities include building counterterrorism engagement in multilateral forums, such as the Global Counterterrorism Forum, and denying terrorist safe havens via the Regional Strategic Initiative.