The Soufan Center hosted a webinar on 13 September 2022 entitled: “National and Multilateral Approaches in Support of Hostages, Wrongful Detainees, and Victims of Terrorism.” This event highlighted the challenges facing hostages and wrongful detainees, many who have been victims and survivors of terrorist groups as well as state actors. Speakers reflected on policy responses, multilateral action, and ways to enhance support for those impacted. While the global phenomenon of hostage-taking by non-state actors frequently garners global attention, there is less awareness of the growing risks posed by state actors engaging in the wrongful or unlawful detention of foreign nationals. Following on President Biden’s recent Executive Order on Bolstering Efforts to Bring Hostages and Wrongfully Detained United States Nationals Home and the United Nations Global Congress of Victims of Terrorism in September, this webinar presented an overview of the trend, as well as policy shifts and priorities today from a U.S. perspective. The discussion featured opening remarks from Naureen Chowdhury Fink, Executive Director of The Soufan Center. Joshua Geltzer, Deputy Assistant to the President & Deputy Homeland Security Advisor, and Ambassador Roger D. Carstens, the Special Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs (SPEHA) at the U.S. Department of State, joined the discussion moderated by Ali Velshi, host and business correspondent for NBC News and MSNBC. The discussion and a full recording of the webinar can be found above.
September 13, 2022