Innovative strategies to combat extremism


Partly in response to the Rohingya crisis, which is widening existing political fractures in Bangladesh, liberalism is coming under threat even as extremism could find new fodder, The New York Times reports:

In particular, Bangladesh’s most influential Islamist movement, Hefazat-e-Islam, which runs about 25,000 madrasas throughout the country, has had more and more say over laws or policies regarding women’s rights, marriage, education — and even the placement of statues representing secular justice.

The radicalization processes of Islamist and far-right extremists show a surprising resemblance between two (supposedly) diametrically opposed worlds of extremism, analyst Julia Ebner, author of The Rage: The Vicious Circle of Islamist and Far-Right Extremism, writes for Prospect (UK):

The pull and push factors that drive individuals into the hands of Islamist and far-right extremists are similar, if not identical. In my conversations with Islamist and far-right extremists I found the same recurring grievance patterns: experiences of perceived discrimination, intimidation and humiliation. In both cases, political failures to respond to resulting socio-economic or physical threats united radicalized individuals from diverse geographic and cultural backgrounds.

Far right and Islamist extremists have succeeded in penetrating each other’s echo chambers as a result of their mutually useful messages, she contends.

A two-day conference organized by the Counter Extremism Project will bring together senior policymakers, academics, industry representatives, NGOs, and the private sector to share innovative ideas for tackling the spread of extremism and terrorist propaganda, countering terror financing, understanding extremist ideologies, and improving community and grassroots engagement.

Distinguished speakers include: EU Commissioner for the Security Union Sir Julian King; Executive Director at the International Institute for Strategic Studies Sir John Jenkins; Dartmouth College Computer Science Professor Dr. Hany Farid; former British Head of Counterterrorism in the FCO Sir Ivor Roberts; and former Polish Foreign Minister Radek Sikorski. The full program may be viewed here.


17-18 October 2017

Renaissance Brussels Hotel, Rue du Parnasse 19, 1050 Brussels

17th and 18th October: 9.00 to 18.00 on both days

Renaissance Brussels Hotel

Rue du Parnasse 19

1050 Brussels, Belgium


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