The Chargé d’affaires of the Dutch Embassy in Algeria visits the ACSRT

The Chargé d’affaires of the Dutch Embassy in Algeria, Mr. Rene Spitz, who has been working in Algeria since September 2014, paid a working visit to the African Centre for the Study and Research on Terrorism (ACSRT) on 2 April 2015.

After a warm reception of the illustrious guest from the Dutch Embassy by Ambassador Madeira, the ACSRT Director, Mr. Rene Spitz took the floor to express gratitude for the warm welcome and the information the ACSRT provides daily on the website. He proceeded to explain the reason for his visit which is motivated by his colleagues at The Hague who asked him to inquire about institutions based in Algeria, especially international institutions working in the area of security and counter terrorism. It is in this connection that he informed them about the existence of the ACSRT and had come in person for further information about the activities of the ACSRT, its history, programme and needs.

The ACSRT Director then took the floor and immediately submitted to Mr. Rene Spitz a document that summarizes the work of the ACSRT. He explained to the Chargé d’Affaires that the ACSRT is a Regional Office of the African Union Commission and works hand in glove with its Focal Points present in all 54 member countries of the African Union. These Focal Points provide information on terrorist events as well as the interpretation and analysis of the government which the ACSRT proceeds to publish or send to the Headquarters in Addis Ababa in a case of sensitive information. In addition, the ACSRT derives information from the daily news briefs it produces, agencies to which it has subscribed and from websites. Experts from African Universities, especially, may also be employed to provide a specific activity or task.

Ambassador Madeira underscored that the main activity of the ACSRT is to collect information on terrorist activity and provide counter terrorism training.

The ACSRT Director also took time to explain to Mr. Spitz some of the challenges facing the institution such as its limited budget. The ACSRT undertakes projects in African countries by preparing States in tackling the scourge of terrorism. It organizes workshops to:
raise awareness on terrorism;
dissuade people from joining terrorist groups;
ensure protection of critical infrastructure and sensitive sites:
explore means of arresting and prosecuting terrorists;
find ways of providing immediate response;
assist victims of acts of terrorism.