Counter-terrorism, human rights and the rule of law in West Africa

A strong criminal justice system offers countries better protection against terrorist attacks.

International law and global policy place counter-terrorism firmly within a rule of law and human rights framework. By focusing on securitised responses to terrorism, countries in West Africa risk undermining the rule of law, compromising human rights protections and slowing progress towards their peace and development agendas. Shifting to a criminal justice approach to countering terrorism has various challenges, but will most effectively protect and promote peace and security, human rights and development in the long term.

About the author

Romi Sigsworth is a research consultant with the Transnational Threats and International Crimes division of the ISS. Prior to this she was the gender specialist at the ISS and a senior researcher at the Centre for the Study of Violence and Reconciliation. She has an MSt in Women’s Studies from Oxford University.

Picture: Bruce Strong/Flickr

Development partners
This report is funded by the government of Norway. The ISS is grateful for support from the members of the ISS Partnership Forum: the Hanns Seidel Foundation, the European Union and the governments of Canada, Denmark, Finland, Ireland, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and the USA.
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