Institute of Race Relations: Spooked! How not to prevent violent extremism


An excellent report and critique of the counter-terrorism PREVENT programme from the IRR (pdf):

"There is strong evidence that a significant part of the Prevent programme involves the embedding of counter-terrorism police officers within the delivery of local services, the purpose of which seems to be to gather intelligence on Muslim communities, to identify areas, groups and individuals that are ‘at risk’ and to then facilitate interventions, such as the Channel programme, as well as more general police engagement with the Muslim community, to manage perceptions of grievances."

"The atmosphere promoted by Prevent is one in which to make radical criticisms of the government is to risk losing funding and facing isolation as an ‘extremist’, while those organisations which support the government are rewarded.This in turn undermines the kind of radical discussions of political issues that would need to occur if young people are to be won over and support for illegitimate political violence diminished.The current emphasis of Prevent on depoliticising young people and restricting radical dissent is actually counter-productive because it strengthens the hands of those who say democracy is pointless."

 

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