Experts suggest tips to curb violent extremism, radicalisation among youths

3 months ago | 19

SOME experts have suggested tips on how parents could identify and tackle violent extremism and radicalization among youths.
The experts gave the suggestions in their presentations in Jos at 3-day parenting for peace train-the-trainer workshop organised by Mercy Corps, a Non-governmental Organisation under its project, Community Initiatives to Promote Peace (CIPP).
One of them, Mrs Mary Bature of Plateau State Ministry of Urban Development, said that the family was strategically placed with a huge responsibilities of responding and preventing violent extremism in communities and hence the need to know the tips.
Bature in a paper entitled ‘the role of family/community in preventing violent extremism’ said that knowing the tips would help greatly in tackling the menace.
She said that talking to children openly and regularly was the best way to help in keeping them safe.
“You might find it helpful to start with a family discussion to set boundaries and agree on what is appropriate, or you might need a more specific conversation about something you are worried about.
“Parents are encouraged to learn basic tips on how to access the internet and social media accounts managed by young people. Pay attention to your child/ward’s activities online.
“Constantly educate your child/ward about the negative and positive sides of the internet.
“They should be aware that people they come in contact with over the internet may be disguising and even deliberately providing misleading information that could expose them to danger.
“Caution young people against keeping secrets or listening to advice to keep secrets from their family members or close associates as this may expose them to danger and exploitation.
“Listen to your young people and show respect for their views while supporting them to visualise the implication of radical views,” she said.
The expert further advised parents to seek information and know their child/ward’s friends and their families.
According to her, parent/child relationship is the foundation to keeping children safe and building their resilience to resist tactics of violent extremist groups.
She stressed the need for open communication between parents and their children to address vulnerability to violent extremism.
Mrs Fatima Suleiman, Executive Director, Islamic Counselling Initiatives Nigeria (ICIN) Learning Centre, Jos, in her presentation, said raising awareness to settle disputes without resorting to violence was sacrosanct in curbing violent extremism.
Suleiman said that encouraging the celebration of diversity, peaceful co-existence and social transformation was another way to promote peace and check violent extremism.
She further said that terrorists and violent extremists were increasingly targeting women and women’s rights as an explicit tactic.
According to her, gender-mainstreaming approaches were needed in order to accurately identify root causes, potential recruits, targets, and victims of violent extremism.
Rev.Fr Blaise Agwom, Director, Dialogue, Reconciliation and Peace (DREP) Centre, Jos, categorised the drivers of violent extremism into two – push and pull factors.
Agwom said that the push factors were conditions conducive to violent extremism and the structural context from which it emerged.
“They include; lack of socio-economic opportunities, marginalization and discrimination, poor governance, violations of human rights and the rule of law, prolonged and unresolved conflicts, and radicalisation in prisons.
“The push factor are individual motivations and processes which play a role in transforming ideas and grievances into violent extremist action.
“These include; individual backgrounds and motivations, collective grievances and victimization stemming from domination, oppression, subjugation or foreign intervention, distortion and misuse of beliefs,” he explained.
 Mrs Amina Bello, CIPP Gender and Inclusion Lead, said that the train-the-trainer workshop was designed to equip parents and youth influencers with skills to aid prompt identification of early signs of radicalisation and build resilience of young women and men to resist violent ideologies.
Bello said that the training would help to address the risk factors for recruitment by violent extremist groups which would increase the use of positive parenting methods to build resilience to violent extremist ideologies.
The lead further said that the programme, funded by United State Agency for International Development (USAID), sought to promote peaceful coexistence and stability in Nigeria.
She called on participants to cascade the information and knowledge acquired in the training amongst their peers in the communities.(NAN)

– July 29, 2021 @ 14:13 GMT |

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