Seems al-Qaida isn't welcome in Samolia or Southeast Asia anymore.
Who's next?

Southeast Asian leaders sign landmark pact to fight terrorism

The Associated Press
Saturday, January 13, 2007
CEBU, Philippines

Southeast Asian leaders on Saturday signed a landmark pact making it easier to prosecute and extradite terror suspects in a region that has been hit by deadly attacks and has bred al-Qaida-linked militants.

The legally binding ASEAN Convention on Counterterrorism the first region-wide anti-terrorism edict was signed by the leaders of the 10-country Association of Southeast Asian Nations at an annual summit, held this time in the central Philippine city of Cebu.

Southeast Asia, a crucial front in the U.S.-led global campaign against terrorism, has seen some of the world's deadliest terror attacks by militants wanting to create a conservative Islamic enclave in the region.

The governments expressed their deep concern "over the grave danger posed by terrorism to innocent lives, infrastructure and the environment, regional and international peace," according to a copy of the convention.

The accord calls on the nations to improve regional cooperation to prevent attacks, and to rapidly share intelligence and relay terror warnings.

It also admonished the nations to curb terror financing and to undertake counterterrorism training, but stressed that no member country can wage anti-terrorist operations in another.

The region was urged to strengthen its capability to deal with possible chemical, biological and nuclear attacks by militants.

In a bid to prosecute terror suspects faster, the convention encouraged authorities to use video conferencing in court proceedings and provide grounds for suspects' extradition.

The accord guarantees fair treatment of suspects, and calls for efforts to rehabilitate those convicted in an attempt to prevent repeat attacks.

The pact is a culmination of ASEAN anti-terrorism discussions and agreements that began after the attacks on the U.S. of Sept. 11, 2001.

The proliferation of terror attacks across Southeast Asia and the rise of Islamic extremist groups like Jemaah Islamiyah and the Abu Sayyaf have added impetus to the effort.

The pact appears surprisingly ambitious, given ASEAN's principle of decision by consensus and its customary reluctance to be seen as interfering in member country's internal affairs.

For instance, the convention says it could be used as a legal basis to extradite terror suspects in the absence of a two-way extradition treaty. Regular extraditions sometimes take years to negotiate.

ASEAN officials met in Bali last November to ensure the pact would be in harmony with national laws and regulations, and to come up with language to fit member countries' different legal systems.

Indonesia plans to hold a meeting in March of six ASEAN countries and Australia, to discuss how the new convention could be best used.

Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines forged an anti-terrorism coalition a year after the Sept. 11 attacks. They were later joined by Cambodia and Thailand. The rest of ASEAN Brunei, Laos, Myanmar, Singapore and Vietnam had stayed out of the coalition.