Joint strategy urged to counter violent extremism

Stakeholders call for support from govt agencies to strengthen partnership against menace in society.

ISLAMABAD: Speakers at a conference here stressed the importance of partnership among government agencies, civil society organizations and international stakeholders in crafting sustainable strategies to counter violent extremism.

The conference on “Countering violent extremism was organized by the Community Resilience Activity – North (CRA-North) in collaboration with the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Centre of Excellence on Countering Violent Extremism (CoECVE) and Paigham-e-Pakistan, concluded at a local hotel in Islamabad.

The conference provided a platform for engaging discussions and insightful sessions, bringing together various stakeholders, including government officials, law enforcement agencies (LEA), experts, academic researchers, and other stakeholders convened to chart a course towards effective counter-extremism efforts.

With a focus on fostering collaboration and seeking support from government institutions, the event highlighted strategies for future programming under the mandate of the government of KP.

The participants advocated for the indispensable role of educational institutions in instilling counter-extremism narratives among the younger generation.

Recognizing the pivotal influence of educational environments, stakeholders underscored the importance of integrating CVE messages into academic curricula and fostering critical thinking skills among students to inoculate them against extremist ideologies.

Key highlights of the conference included comprehensive discussions on community resilience, capacity-building initiatives, and the role of education and youth engagement in countering violent extremism.

The sessions delved into the importance of partnerships between government agencies, civil society organizations, and international stakeholders in developing sustainable CVE strategies by engaging through mass media and social media platforms and disseminating the message through educational institutions.

Dr. Ayaz Khan, Chief Coordination/Executive Officer of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Center of Excellence on Countering Violent Extremism (CoECVE), emphasized the significance of the collaborative efforts between CRA-North and CoECVE in combating violent extremism in the merged areas of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, particularly in North Waziristan, Khyber, Kurram, and Orakzai districts. He reiterated CoECVE’s commitment not only to counter but also to prevent violent extremism.

Dr. Qibla Ayaz, chairman of the Council of Islamic Ideology, expressed his appreciation for the active participation and valuable contributions of all attendees. He emphasized the significance of collective action in addressing the complex challenges posed by violent extremism and reaffirmed the commitment of CRA-North and its partners to continued collaboration in this critical endeavor.

Community Resilience Activity – North (CRA-North) aims to bolster community-level resilience and prevent conflicts in the Newly Merged Districts (NMDs) of Khyber, Kurram, North Waziristan, and Orakzai in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Province.

Implemented in close collaboration with the Government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (GoKP) at both regional and district levels, CRA-N seeks to foster civic engagement, enhance social cohesion, and provide assistance to former Temporary Displaced Person (TDP) communities.

It particularly focuses on communities with social, ethnic, or religious identities that have been exploited by Violent Extremist Organizations (VEOs).

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