UNITED NATIONS – The U.N. Security Council has approved a resolution calling on all countries not to pay ransom to kidnappers who use the money to finance terrorist groups.
British Ambassador Mark Lyall Grant says hostage-taking has become the major source of financing for terrorist organizations. He says that in the last 3 ½ years, al-Qaida-affiliated groups and other terrorist organizations have collected at least $105 million in ransom payments.
He says the resolution sends a firm message that the international community stands united to ensure that hostage-taking is "no longer perceived as a lucrative" activity by terrorists.
The Britain-circulated resolution is binding for the 193 U.N. member states, but it includes no penalties for non-compliance. The 15-member Security Council approved it Monday.