Counter Terrorism

The UK Government’s Counter Terrorism Strategy has been in place since 2003 and is known as CONTEST.

The aim of the Strategy is ‘to reduce the risk to the UK and its interests overseas from international terrorism, so that people can go about their lives freely and with confidence’.

CONTEST has four elements:

  1. Pursue: to stop terrorist attacks
  2. Prevent: to stop people becoming terrorists or supporting violent extremism
  3. Protect: to strengthen our protection against terrorist attack
  4. Prepare: where an attack cannot be stopped, to mitigate its impact

Prevent in Wales

The Prevent strand of CONTEST has perhaps the biggest impact on Local Authorities and Community Safety Partnerships. The Prevent Strategy has 3 main objectives:

  • to respond to the ideological challenge of terrorism and the threat faced from those who promote it;
  • to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism and ensure that they are given appropriate support; and
  • to work with a wide range of sectors and institutions (including education, faith, health and criminal justice) where there are risks of radicalisation which need to be addressed

Counter Terrorism and Security Act 2015 and the Prevent Duty

In 2015 the Prevent Duty placed a duty on local authorities, in the exercise of their functions, to have due regard to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism.

If you’ve seen or heard something that could potentially be related to terrorism, trust your instincts and report it. Your actions could save lives.

Terrorism Threat Levels

There are 5 levels of threat:

  • low - an attack is highly unlikely
  • moderate - an attack is possible but not likely
  • substantial - an attack is likely
  • severe - an attack is highly likely
  • critical - an attack is highly likely in the near future

The level is set by the Joint Terrorism Analysis Centre and the Security Service (MI5).

Threat levels do not have an expiry date. They can change at any time as different information becomes available.

Find out what the current threat level is here