Tuesday, 07 December 2021 04:19

Identifying Causes of Violent Extremism

A residential workshop for 42 Civil Society Organization (CSOs) members was held in Colombo under NPC’s project Prevention of Violent Extremism - Capacity Building in Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.

Fifteen virtual training sessions have been delivered to 172 CSO members in Mannar, Vavuniya, Ampara, Batticaloa, Kandy and Kurunegala. The plan was to deliver two days of physical training to 25 to 30 CSO members who were identified in each district. Because of the Covid-19 pandemic, the project team shifted the training to a virtual setting.

Prevention of Violent Extremism (PVE) team adviser and process facilitator for the training, NPC Programme Adviser Sumadhu Weerawarne, requested participants to pay attention to preventing violence, saying that it was a responsibility of CSOs. She pointed out that accusing Muslims globally as perpetrators of violent extremism was not accurate and must not be accepted. She concluded that exclusion of individuals and groups was the root cause of violence extremism so to prevent it, inclusion should be promoted through state and non-state actors.

Executive Director of NPC, Dr. Jehan Perera, outlined the push and pull factors, putting violent extremism in the context of post-independence politics, the JVP insurrections, Tamil minority alienation and the Easter attacks.

Other topics discussed included how violent extremists recruits followers, why people become extremists and the drivers of violence extremism.