By Roy Mabasa
Members of the Security Council of the United Nations on Tuesday condemned in the strongest terms what it called “heinous and cowardly terrorist attack” that occurred at Jolo Cathedral in Sulu on January 27.
In a statement, the members of the Security Council likewise expressed their deepest sympathy and condolences to the families of the victims and to the Philippines government and they wished a speedy and full recovery to those who were injured.
At least 21 people were killed and dozens of others were wounded when two separate explosions rocked the Our Lady of Carmel Cathedral in Jolo during a Sunday morning mass.
“The members of the Security Council reaffirmed that terrorism in all its forms and manifestations constitutes one of the most serious threats to international peace and security,” they said.
The Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL/Da’esh) has claimed responsibility on the Jolo cathedral attack.
Moreover, the members of the powerful Security Council underlined the need to hold perpetrators, organizers, financiers and sponsors of these reprehensible acts of terrorism accountable and bring them to justice, even as they urged all States, in accordance with their obligations under international law and relevant Security Council resolutions, “to cooperate actively with the Government of the Philippines and all other relevant authorities in this regard.”
“The members of the Security Council reiterated that any acts of terrorism are criminal and unjustifiable, regardless of their motivation, wherever, whenever and by whomsoever committed,” they added.
Similarly, the Security Council members reaffirmed the need for all States to “combat by all means, in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations and other obligations under international law, including international human rights law, international refugee law and international humanitarian law, threats to international peace and security caused by terrorist acts.”
The Security Council is one of the UN’s principal organs tasked with the maintenance of international peace and security as well as accepting new members to the United Nations and approving any changes to the international body’s Charter.