Between 1992 and 1995, General Kulikov commanded the Combined Group of Russian Armed Forces in the Chechen Republic. He was later appointed Russian interior minister. He is currently the chairman of the Board of the World Anticriminal and Antiterrorist Forum.
In many countries, the task of combating international terrorism - one of the main challenges to humankind - has been mainly entrusted to the security services, which simultaneously conduct intelligence and counter-intelligence activities. In some states, the useful practice of creating joint anti-terrorist working groups has been established. They first emerged in the USA, and now co-operate with Russia, China, Japan, India and Pakistan. The special feature of these groups is that they are interdepartmental bodies, which means that security services exchange useful operative information.
Co-operation between the police forces of various countries is a most effective form of interaction at present. For example, T-Centre has been created under the Russian Interior Ministry to combat terrorism in Russia. This is a subdivision of the Main Department for Combating Organised Crime, which has on many occasions teamed up with the security services of Britain, Germany, France and other states. Last year, T-Centre solved 113 crimes committed by extremists, while it also freed 580 hostages held in Chechnya.
In the North Caucasus and some other regions of the world, national armed forces are involved in anti-terrorist operations. The military are convinced that it is time to create special units to do this. At the same time, when organising large-scale efforts to combat terrorism and trans-national crime, it would be expedient to draft international-legal documents on joint action specifying the priority role of UN Security Council sanctions to conduct anti-terrorist operations and control them. However, military-technological solutions are not a panacea in the fight against terrorism, either.
Experience shows that although an extremist regime can be toppled by force, as was the case in Afghanistan and Iraq, it is impossible to reduce the threat posed by international terrorist organisations, because they are clearly not the enemy indicated on staff maps and monitors. Terrorism is a criminal instrument in the hands of certain, thoroughly camouflaged criminal, political and financial structures. It has become obvious that one cannot combat terrorism and modern international crime by using double standards in appraising the actions of Chechen militants, and some or other events.
Crime and terrorism at the state and inter-state level can be counteracted effectively provided civil society, every section of the population, joins in the efforts to do so. An important step in this direction was the initiative, put forward by Russia, to create the World Anticriminal and Antiterrorist Forum (WAAF). The United Nations supported this idea. About 40 states have joined the Forum and it has been registered as a non-governmental public organisation. Its strategic task is to develop new technologies to combat trans-national crime and terrorism and create a training system for combating terrorism in Russia and other countries.
The formation of the World Anticriminal and Antiterrorist Forum is nearing completion. Russia should enhance its co-operation with the relevant structures in the United Nations, the OSCE, the Council of Europe and the European Union, in drafting a strategy to counteract new challenges and threats. Regional organisations, such as the Shanghai Co-operation Organisation, the Council of Baltic Sea States, the Inter-Parliamentary Assembly of CIS Member-States and the Collective Security Council of the States Parties to the Collective Security Treaty should also participate in this process. We can only achieve these aims through joint efforts.