UK 'grassroots' anti-extremism campaign produced by Home Office

"A high profile campaign encouraging Muslim women in the UK to “make a stand against terrorism” was covertly produced by the Home Office’s communications unit in order “to transmit counter-extremism messages into communities and hard to reach audiences”, Middle East Eye can exclusively reveal.

The #MakingAStand campaign was launched by Inspire, a women’s counter-extremism organisation, in September 2014, and described by Inspire founder Sara Khan as a “jihad against violence”.


Earlier this year, Khan and Inspire co-director Kalsoom Bashir said in evidence submitted to a parliamentary inquiry into the government’s counter-extremism policy: “All decisions in relation to Inspire’s remit and work are made solely by the directors; all projects and activities are led and carried out by the Inspire team.”

But an internal government document seen by MEE lists #MakingAStand as a “RICU Product”, referring to the Research, Information and Communications Unit (RICU), the Home Office’s strategic communications unit responsible since 2011 for disseminating counter-extremism narratives as part of the government’s Prevent strategy.

The March 2015 document, produced by the Home Office-based Office for Security and Counter Extremism, is titled “Prevent Strategy: Local delivery best practice catalogue” and marked “Not for public discourse”."

See: UK 'grassroots' anti-extremism campaign produced by Home Office (Middle East Eye, link). This follows earlier revelations that RICU was behind other campaigns supposedly organised and run by civil society organisations.

Also see: UK government 'running covert counter-extremism propaganda campaign' (Middle East Eye, link) and: Inside Ricu, the shadowy propaganda unit inspired by the cold war (Guardian, link)


Spotted an error? If you've spotted a problem with this page, just click once to let us know.

Report error