Despite the end of the war Sri Lanka remains vigilant of emerging security threats, Defence Secretary B M U D Basnayake said today.
He said this while speaking at ‘Defence Seminar – 2015’, themed as ‘National Security in the context of Emerging Global Threats’ at the Colombo Galadari Hotel.
The Defence Secretary said that in the 21st century national security challenges differ in form and combating such threats requires not only efforts but also cooperation, coordination and collaboration among countries with the ever increasing frequency of conflicts.
He also noted that in today’s context, threats are posed to national security not only from traditional nation states but from non state actors including terrorist networks and organized groups engaged in various criminal activities. A range of complex challenges emerging from rapid technological developments, sweeping demographic changes and accelerating environmental degradation also have an impact on national security, he said.
“Although the defeat of the terrorists in May 2009 paved the way for peace and for rapid post conflict development, our security forces and law enforcement agencies must remain vigilant about emerging threats including drug smuggling, human trafficking, and organized crime. Those engaged in transnational crime especially make increasing use of technological advances to stay ahead of the national security apparatus. Combating such groups not only requires effort on the part of individual Governments, but cooperation, coordination and collaboration amongst countries,” Basnayake noted.
The 21st century has been labelled as the Information Age, where the availability and accessibility of information has reached unprecedented levels. This has expanded the contexts from which national security challenges can emerge. Cyber warfare, cyber espionage and cyber exploitation are new threats to national and global security. The risk profile of Governments, organisations and individual citizens have all increased with the increase in electronic availability of sensitive data that is vulnerable to talented hackers. This is another area about which nations must now be vigilant, he went on to say.