Counterterrorism Centre Expert Advisory Board meeting

On 19 December State Security Service (VDD) held a meeting of Counterterrorism Centre Expert Advisory Board, where current developments in the field of counterterrorism were discussed.

At the meeting, VDD experts and representatives of the institutions involved in the implementation of counterterrorism measures discussed the current trends of terrorism threats in Europe. Special attention was paid to the ongoing armed conflict between Israel and the terrorist organization "Hamas" and its impact on the threat of terrorism in Europe.

VDD experts informed the participants of the meeting about the counterterrorism measures taken in the last six months. The service has carried out systematic work both to prevent the risks of terrorism and to check and strengthen the readiness of the responsible services to react in the event of a terrorist threat.

This year, with an informative seminar in Zemgale, VDD concluded the cycle of regional seminars, the purpose of which was to strengthen the abilities of representatives of responsible services working in different regions of Latvia to react in the event of a terrorist attack. In September of this year, VDD organized counterterrorism training "Mītava 2023" in Jelgava for operational services and other institutions involved in counterterrorism measures.

Similarly, VDD continued intensive work in strengthening the security of terrorism risk objects, evaluating the physical security measures of both critical infrastructure and places of mass gathering and providing recommendations for their improvement.

At the meeting, VDD counterterrorism experts also presented the performance in the second half of 2023 of the inter-institutional working groups established by the council - the radicalization prevention group "Prevent" and the Terrorism Financing Investigation Coordination Group.

At the meeting, the priorities in the field of counterterrorism for the next year were outlined.

The terrorism threat level in Latvia currently is low, and the information at the disposal of VDD does not indicate that the situation could change in the near future.

VDD Counterterrorism Centre Expert Advisory Board is the coordinating and consulting institution whose aim is to improve the cooperation among VDD, state and municipal institutions, as well as the private sector within the counterterrorism field in order to ensure the preparedness to effectively prevent terrorism threats and to remedy their consequences. The representatives of the following institutions take part in the Advisory Board: Constitution Protection Bureau, Defence Intelligence and Security Service, Ministry of Interior, Ministry of Defence, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Prosecutor General’s Office, Financial Intelligence Unit, National Armed Forces, Ministry of Transport, Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Environmental Protection and Regional Development, Ministry of Health, Ministry of Finance, Financial and Capital Market Commission and the Bank of Latvia.

Information prepared by: VDD