EJC holds international conference on security and counterterrorism in Brussels

The European Jewish Congress together with SACC by EJC organised an international conference named “Security Challenges in Europe: A comprehensive approach” in cooperation with Brussels Capital IXL Police, CCOJB, and the SASCE Project at the Brussels Town Hall.

Security experts, law enforcement officials, European lawmakers, and religious and community leaders came together to discuss common challenges and share their knowledge in the field of security, counterterrorism and victim support.

Raya Kalenova, Executive Vice-President & CEO of EJC, expressed that “SACC’s close cooperation with local authorities and law enforcement officials has made a genuine difference for Jews throughout Europe and this conference is proof of what we can achieve when we work together for the common good.”

Ophir Revach, CEO of SACC, emphasized that we are living “in difficult times where peace and security of our European democracies are being challenged. Terrorism aims to impact the whole civil society and change the cohesion between the citizens by fueling polarization and hatred.”

Philip Close, Mayor of Brussels, thanked the European Jewish Congress for the organisation of the conference and emphasized that “everyone should feel safe and respected in Brussels. There is no place in this city for antisemitism, racism, and polarization. And in this regard, we will never forget the victims of terrorism.”

Michael Gooevaerts, Superintendent- Chief Commissioner of Brussels Capital IXL Police, said that the “Brussels Police Force remains available and vigilant to safeguard our communities. I encourage my Police Force to think globally and act locally to make our law enforcement agencies more resilient and flexible to face the contemporary challenges.”

Participants had the opportunity to hear the long-standing experience of a diverse array of speakers, including Shalom Ben Hanan, a Past Senior Officer at the Israel Security Agency, who shared his experience and knowledge about radical Islam, lone wolf terrorism, as well as cyberspace and terrorism.

At the same time, the SASCE (Safer and Stronger Communities in Europe) Project, funded by the European Commission, was presented to the general public. An initiative on which Buddhist, Christian, Jewish, and Muslim communities joined forces to improve security in places of worship across Europe, sharing best practices and know-how to comprehend the external and internal risks to faith institutions.