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Wednesday 25 September 2019

CIS Warns against Fuel and Energy Facilities Terrorism

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YEREVAN (TASS) — Terrorists have been showing an increased interest in fuel and energy facilities, and the latest drone attack in Saudi Arabia confirms this, Head of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) Anti-Terrorism Centre Andrei Novikov said on Wednesday.

At the opening of the meeting of heads of anti-terrorism departments of the CIS security and intelligence services Ararat Anti-Terror 2019, Andrei Novikov told.

We are seeing a mounting interest of terrorist organizations in fuel and energy infrastructure facilities, which are an independent element of strategic security for any state. One of many proofs is the drone attack on oil refineries in Abqaiq and Khurais in Saudi Arabia overnight to September 14, as a result of which oil output was halved and international commitments on supplies were put in jeopardy.

According to Novikov, the overall energy potential of CIS countries is nearly 8% of global proved oil reserves and some 33% of global gas reserves. “The global nature of energy and its significant impact on other global economy areas require serious attention to addressing flaws in protecting critical infrastructure facilities in this sector”, the head of the CIS Anti-Terrorism Centre stressed.

For Novikov, in this regard, security agencies, intelligence services and law enforcement agencies need to develop a single mechanism for protecting fuel and energy facilities from terrorism and extremism-related threats. Therefore, the key task of this meeting and the exercises is how to uncover the signs of preparations for terrorist attacks at fuel and energy facilities and counter them amid the increased activity of international terrorist organizations.

Sleeper cells
The problem of forming a network of “sleeper cells” of terrorist organizations and searching for people suspected of terrorism and extremism may become a threat to almost all countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), Andrei Novikov told the meeting.

The head of the CIS Anti-Terrorism Centre noted the problem of the identification and search for people who committed terrorist and extremist crimes and who flee from justice, and the problem of the technologization of terrorism.

The meeting will sum up the results of the first stage of the joint anti-terrorism drills Ararat Anti-Terror 2019 of the CIS states’ relevant bodies and will see the second and third stages of the drills. Thus, units of Armenia’s National Security Service will carry out a counter-terrorism operation on the release of hostages and elimination of terrorists in Gazprom Armenia during the second stage. On Thursday, the Armed Forces, the police and the border forces will carry out a special operation to block and eliminate illegal armed gangs and terrorist groups as part of the third stage of the drills. The effects of the terror attack will also be removed involving the Armenian Emergencies Ministry.

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