Mike Smith was until July 2013, Assistant Secretary-General and Executive Director of the United Nations Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate, a position he held for more than 5 years. Prior to that he was Australia’s Ambassador for Counter-Terrorism. From 2002 to 2006, Mike Smith was Australia’s Permanent Representative to the UN and the Conference on Disarmament in Geneva. Amongst other responsibilities over this period, in 2004 he was elected Chair of the UN Commission on Human Rights, one of the most demanding chairing positions in the multilateral system. For most of the period 1998 to 2002, Mike Smith was Chief of Staff to the Australian Foreign Minister, Alexander Downer. Earlier he served as Australia’s Ambassador to Algeria and Tunisia, (1989 – 1991) and to Egypt, Sudan and Algeria (1995 – 1998).
On the 9 year anniversary of the Westgate attack, this Perspective takes stock of recent political developments and the evolution of the threat from al-Shabaab within both Somalia and Kenya.
This perspective analyses the recent ECtHR ruling and explains its impact on the policy of European countries to repatriate children that are still in the Northeast Syria camps.
This Perspective will assess five common predictions of the Taliban’s rule in Afghanistan when they took over a year ago and consider whether things turned out as badly as many believed.