Throughout Europe we can observe an increased preparedness to prevent and counteract young people´s radicalisation towards violent and militant extremism. However, in previous efforts, there seems to be skepticism about the involvement of local communities and civil society resources in the activities. The CoCoRa project therefore aims to develop a prevention strategy in close collaboration with local communities that may be targeted by violent extremists.
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Harnessing the power of digital media tools to prevent the radicalisation of vulnerable youth
In Europe today there are a wide range of situations and circumstances where extremist narratives have emerged as powerful and destructive tools used by religious fanatics, terrorists and those espousing radical political views to radicalize vulnerable youth. Indeed, it is clear that the range of situations and circumstances where radicalization can occur increases with every economic downturn; every incident of racial hatred or homophobic abuse; every new migrant or refugee crisis.
The CONCORDIA Project consortium comprises 8 partners representing 8 Member States. It is led by Jugendförderverein Parchim/Lübz e.V. from Germany who are supported by Asociatia pentru Educatie si Dezvoltare Durabila from Romania; Die Kärntner Volkshochschulen from Austria; Centrum inspirace from the Czech Republic; Future In Perspective from Ireland; Etudes Et Chantiers Corsica from France; SYNTHESIS Centre for Research and Education from Cyprus and Innoventum Oy from Finland.
While it is widely accepted that teenage years can be a particularly hard time for some young people in the vast majority of cases issues that arise are of a transient nature and the young people in question with appropriate supports successfully negotiate the pitfalls. For a small minority these challenges persist and are often further exacerbated by a lack of positive role models and feelings of alienation from their peer group. For this cohort of vulnerable youth the path to an inclusive and rewarding life can be somewhat obscured. Educational under-achievement most often leads to social exclusion and multi-faceted disadvantage and in a small number of cases young adolescents on the margins of society and economy are being attracted to extremist groups enticed by the false promises of Neo-Nazi or “Islamic State” ideologies.
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Nine educational organisations across Europe have joined their experience against hate to develop tolerance and prevent violent radicalisations. We want to share ideas, strategies and tools for teachers, trainers and educators.
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The main objective of PREPARE is to help avoid radicalization through rehabilitation and disengagement programs in situations of freedom and conditional freedom.
The objectives are:
1) Implement a decoupling and rehabilitation program that in turn involves local authorities.
2) Identify needs in this field to develop interinstitutional initiatives.
3) Strengthen the capacities and abilities of the authorities in matters of prevention and detection of radicalization.
4) Bring together and congregate the competent European authorities, willing to address radicalization through the regime of freedom and coercive freedom.
After the law adopted by the French government at the end of 2017, which strengthens and reinforces national security in the fight against terrorism, this interdimensional project faces the threat of radicalization adding to the plans already implemented in the country, such as the PLAT (plan to fight terrorism) and the PART (Plan of Action against Radicalization and Terrorism).
The national project has been the responsibility of 20 ministerial departments and consists of 60 specific measures, enclosed in 5 axes:
1) Bring people to fight and resist radicalization
2) Complete the radicalization detection and prevention network
3) Understand and anticipate the evolution of radicalization
4) Professionalize local actors and evaluate practices
5) Counteract uprooting and disconnection.
Project designed to detect the radicalization factors of 14 selected inmates. 8 men and 6 women, ten of whom are awaiting trial.
The project is intended to accompany and forge a bond of trust between the professionals and the inmates. This is the responsibility of the EDGE team, members of the APCARS (Association of Applied Criminal Policy and Social Reintegration), which will detect factors that led to extremist violence, their motivation and the risks they have of resorting to it again. It also addresses areas such as social, family or religious, through individual interviews or home visits.
After a follow-up of deadly attacks perpetrated in French territory and claimed by ISIS, the government decided to take measures to forge a new counter-terrorism strategy. It was not until mid-2014 when the first official measures of the Government of the French Republic were introduced:
* Implantation of the “vert” number, which sought to make available to citizens a telephone number available for any event of a terrorist nature.
* Creation in January 2016 of special deradicalization pavilions in prisons. These pavilions were specifically designed to intervene in prisoners convicted of terrorism.
* Opening of specialized deradicalization centres throughout France. This proposal aimed to inculcate citizenship values to citizens from all over the country, taking a counternarrative from violent extremist ideology.
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